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Coming Soon to a River Near You

Mar 16, 2012 | Mike Lawson


Spring Blossoms Baetis


By Mike Lawson

It won’t be long before the first Baeits mayflies of the season begin to emerge on the Henry’s Fork and surrounding waters. In fact, there have already been some good hatches on the upper Henry's Fork at Last Chance. Commonly called Blue Winged Olives, this Latin name is more widely accepted by the angling public. Many species of these widespread genera are multi-brooded and may have two or three generations a year. The most important of these occur in the spring and the fall. These little mayflies are perfectly adapted to the harsh weather conditions often encountered at these times of the year. Some species actually crawl under the water to oviposit their eggs.

The best emergences normally take place in late March and early April. Look for the duns about mid-day. The heaviest concentrations occur during cloudy, cool weather. There is plenty of good water throughout the sections of the Henry’s Fork that are open on a year round basis. In the past this included the water from the Vernon Bridge down to the Chester Dam and further downstream below Saint Anthony. Last year more of the river was opened to year-round fishing including Box Canyon, Last Chance and upstream from the Island Park Reservoir. The Warm River to Ashton section can also produce some great Baetis action.

The best dry flies are Gray/Olive No Hackle, Thorax, and Sparkle Duns in size 16 or 18. Emerger patterns can also be very productive. A size 16 Pheasant Tail is a good match for the nymph. In most cases presentation is much more important than fly pattern. A good drag-free presentation with a Parachute Adams and nymph dropper is a superb combination. Drop the nymph about 24” below the dry.

Our shop is open year round. We stand ready to help in any way we can with flies, tackle or anything else you need. We are also happy to provide directions to the fishing areas, recommendations for places to eat or stay, or anything else you need. Remember, we live here and we know every inch of this river. This river has been a major part of our lives for at least four generations. Hope to see you on the water soon!