BWOs and rising trout

The past couple days here in Jackson have been a blast.
Fishing and weather have conspired to offer up some of the
best fishing of the year around the valley. After a summer of
higher than normal flows (thank you Idaho), the Snake River is
down at winter flow levels. The result is that trout are podded-
up and side channels are easily wadeable. The Blue Wing
Olives have been popping in the afternoons and the trout
aren’t too shy about eating them.

a view of the river-bottom…

fall in the river-bottom

With guiding trips drying up, Jamie and I have been able to
get out on the water together lately. Sunday, our neighbor and
friend, Taylor, joined us for a walk-in trip on the Snake. The
sun was out, enhancing the yellow and orange river-bottom
colors. We fished a stretch of the Snake in Grand Teton
National Park; open again after the childish Washington
bullshit. On the hike in we saw a healthy momma moose who
let us pass without incident.

mama moose in the willows

Too many fish to count were caught and at the end of the
afternoon we walked out with big grins, realizing we
experienced some awesome dry fly fishing; the kind the
Snake is known for.

fall fine spotted cutthroat

Yesterday I walked out on the Elk Refuge with my friend
Matt. Trout Unlimited is doing some great work out there;
improving habitat and flow on the upper part of the stream. As
some of you may know, water above the hatchery tends to
meander extremely slowly and while the upper end holds a
good number trout, it pales in comparison to its lower stretch.
The habitat enhancement looked good, with added bank
structure and some selectively placed rock that will no doubt
make Flat Creek even better than it already is. In addition to
checking out the stream work, we caught some fish
on…..streamers…..yes, dry fly purists, we cast streamers and
were reward. Definitely fun to get out! Over the next few
weeks, I’m hoping to swing streamers for colorful Brown trout.
Should be fun and at some point I’ll be sure to post a report.
In the meantime, hope folks are getting out and enjoying this
great weather!

tracks in the sand; lots of gizzly prints..

griz print


When October arrives, with it comes the transition to
winter. Lately here in Jackson Hole, the weather has varied
considerably, with snow and fast-moving early season storms
making frequent appearances. Animals are doing their best to
put on the pounds for the upcoming winter. Trout do this too,
sipping Blue Winged Olives and the odd grasshopper that
stumbles into the cold current.

Jamie with a nice cutthroat

Jamie showing off one of the nice trout from the

We’ve been trying to make the most of things around here,
fishing as much as possible and tying any necessary flies that
aren’t already in the fly boxes. Jamie and I got out this past
weekend, spending one day scouting for fall-run brown trout
and another day on a beautiful Dubois trout river. We failed to
locate staging browns in the lake. The wind added considerable
challenges and it’s probably still a little early, but it never hurts
to check…. Nymphing proved successful on the moving water.
Jamie ended up landing several really nice cutthroat trout
during the hours we spent out. Besides the trout, we saw mule
deer, pronghorn, a fox and two Grizzly bears.

crossing paths

One of the two Grizzlies we saw on our drive home.
These guys walked right by our car

The Gov’t shutdown has affected things around here.
GTNP, Yellowstone and the National Elk Refuge are all closed
at the moment, denying access to the anglers and guides who
hoped to fish, not to mention all the folks who were planning
to enjoy the parks in arguably the best month of the year to
sightsee. I’m doubtful that things will reopen before the
season ends and we’ll probably have to wait until next year to
fish the miles of great water in our parks. In the meantime
there are still plenty of fishy waters to explore that remain
open and unaffected from the idiots in Washington. Tributaries
in the forest are still fishing well and bigger rivers the like
Snake are in their prime.