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South Fork of the Snake River Fishing Report 4/19/18

Shayde Stotts with Brown Trout | South Fork of the Snake River

Thanks for checking in on this week’s fishing report.  You can pretty much read last week’s report and add to critical things to the equation, weather & flow.  We’ll discuss each below.

Flows: The discharge out of Palisades Reservoir was increased this week from 18,000 cfs to 20,000 cfs.  This change was made to make more room in the reservoir based on the fact that the Tetons and surrounding mountains received quite a bit of snow the first two weeks of April.  The skiing has been excellent! The goal is to bring Palisades down to 45% – 50% full in order to have storage capacity for run off.  We’re excited to see the Bureau of Reclamation taking very proactive steps and things are shaping up for some excellent fishing this season.

Weather: Wow, has winter lingered around here, we’ve had snow on the ground here at the lodge more than once this week. The forecast this weekend looks amazing with highs nearing the 60 degree mark.  While the high flows will make fishing more difficult than usual it will also drive most anglers away so you’re sure to have lots of privacy on the river this weekend.  We’re sure to be out enjoying the sun, solitude and some fish this weekend.

weather photo

Fishing: If you’ve been keeping up with our fishing report lately then there’s really no changes to the flies, tactics, and techniques. I’m literally going to copy paste from last week’s report with the added reminder to nymph and throw streamers in the slowest water you can find. Even water that isn’t moving can produce fish when flows are this high.

I think it’s pretty safe to say that most anglers are not fans of flows that are this high.  It makes wade fishing access pretty much impossible and fishing from a boat difficult as well.  Dry flies?  You can pretty much forget about it.  But the funny thing is, our guides LOVE this time of year.  Why? Well there’s next to nobody on the river AND the fish are EATING!

It might not be pretty, strike indicators, split shot, and flies that are certainly not traditional. Tie on that big, bright, ugly thing that you’re almost afraid to use and and put it in the right spot and well, they work!  The key here is “right spot”.  Our guides focus on “soft water” areas where the flows are slowed by islands, logs, willows, etc. In the summer our guides might fish 90% of the river this time of year they might only hit 2 or 3 spots all day and really focus on these areas where the fish are sitting (to get out of the heavy flows) and eating.

This Week’s Top Flies

  • Egg patterns
  • San Juan Worms (the biggest ugliest ones!)
  • Stonefly Nymphs (same as above, pick a big one)
  • Bead Head Prince

If you’re interested in learning more, need some flies, or want to book a guide come by our shop or give us a call.  208.483.2222

Have fun out there.