If the forecast holds true, we may have a string of stable, warmish days ahead which could bode well for some final forays into the park with terrestrials for the season.
Recent rains have once again brought flows and turbidity up on the Lamar River in the Cutthroat Corner of the Park. Give it another day or two, consult the USGS Streamflows, or check in with the shop before heading that way. If it remains dry, we could see some good terrestrial fishing by the weekend on the Lamar. Additionally, you should keep an eye out for Fall Drake Mackerel (Timpanogos hecuba) mayflies, and consider adding a large (size #12) drake pattern to your batting order along with ants and hoppers.
Some of the finest sight-fishing opportunities for large, selective Cutthroat trout still exists on Slough Creek, and the upper-Yellowstone River (between Chittenden Bridge and Yellowstone Lake). Bring your A-Game, long leaders, and a good selection of small, technical dry flies to fool these wary trophies. We have a great selection of tricky patterns for these situations. Swing by the shop, and stock up before you head in.
The park section of the Gallatin River remains the best option for clear water in that system as recent rains continue to send chalky-colored water down the Taylor’s Fork making the Gallatin off-color from roughly mile marker 34 downstream. Ants, Hoppers, and Baetis mayflies are the dry flies of choice these days, and as always, small, techy beachhead nymphs will produce.
Small streams in YNP remain a delight this time of year. Get creative, dig into those top maps, and discover some squiggly blue lines of your own.
It won’t be long before some of our perennial fall favorite fisheries, the Firehole and Madison Rivers, start to shape up again, but for the time being, water temps are still a bit too high for these to be a viable option. Over the next few weeks, as the days get shorter, and the night cooler, you can expect these great fall fisheries to come into prime shape. If you are heading into the Madison in the park for some of the early opportunities at migrating fish, or to shake the rust off of that Spey Cast, consider limiting your sessions to the early am hours, or scuzzy days when temps are cooler.
Have fun out there!