The “back-to-school” lull is in full swing, and it’s pretty quiet in Craiglandia these days. Which is nice. The guides are recovering from weeks of sun stroke, and our shop staff is fishing more and harder than they usually do. Speaking of staff, we will be losing a few this week. Peter Longoria will be heading back to Missoula to continue his education, and Jared Eckhardt will be heading into the Bob Marshall to guide hunting for the fall. Stellar job by both, and we will miss your hard work during the fall season.
Fishing remains good to great, but somewhat inconsistent. If you don’t like “inconsistent”, stick to the Dam-Craig. Trico’s are reliable if the weather is right, and nymphing is very good. The typical Trico rotation of Para-Spinner, Buzzball, Q’s Cluster Midge, Hanging midge should be all you need. Sunken spinner patterns behind a Caddis is also a good call. Heathens hang 2 under a pinch-on.
Nymphs consist of typical late summer fair. Zebra Midge, Tailwater Sowbug, Lightning Bug, and glass-Bead mayfly nymphs like the Military May and Red-headed Stepchild are excellent choices. Keep them small, especially from the Dam to Wolf Creek.
Craig to Stickney is good and should be on your radar. But as you move into the Canyon it becomes a total crap-shoot. Some days it’s good with hoppers, others not so much. Morning spinner falls should not be counted on, nor should afternoon hatches. If You hear it was good yesterday, DON’T GO! The Canyon and Cascade have definitely been on an every-other-day schedule. Or every third day.
Streamer fishing should be good, but you’ll have to battle the drifting weeds and algae (DWAA). When the weeds are bad you can usually find plenty of open water, but are the fish in it? Our standard rig right now is an intermediate line or tip, and a small to medium sizes flashy Bug. The Stinger Sculpin, Kreelex, Skiddish Smolt, Foxee Clouser and the like should work.
Today was cloudy with some showers in the region. The above shot is at Russell Gates on the Blackfoot this morning. That’s some tasty weather. The Mo’ looked the same. Would have been an excellent day to toss a streamer around. The weather looks fantastic and even “delightful” for the weekend and beyond!