The Bighole is back on the rise with the recent rains. Its creeping up toward 7,100 CFS again. The cold weather has shut down the salmon fly hatch for the time being. Its hard to say if the hatch will continue as things warm back up. The fish will still eat a big dry fly but downsizing slightly or Running a dry/dropper rig worked tight to the bank is a great way to find fish this time of year. The water is clear on the bighole right now and things are really coming into shape. This is the best time of year to get out on this river. The streamer bite has been great on cloudy rainy days and the dry dropper bite has been good all the time. Yellow is a color that shows up well in this water. Tan and gold has also been producing well. A good cast is the key to streamer fishing right now. Many of the fish are tucked into structure or tight to the banks and undercuts. You have to be willing to lose a few flies if you head this direction. With the water on the drop, the fish will start moving back into normal holding lies in the next few days. Nymphing with stonefly patterns and a worm pattern can sometimes be the set-up that will fish all day. If the fish will not commit to the big stuff, caddis larva and blue winged olive nymphs have been producing. Find some soft water and bust out the dry fly stick! As with the usuall salmon fly hatch, mornings and evenings are fishing well. There may not be as many bugs around but the fish are more willing to eat the flies! Be extremely careful out this way. This river is notoriously difficult to wade and even more so at such a high flow. Additionally, if you plan to float the river make sure you know the stretch. There are a few diversion dams and nasty hydraulics and wave trains in the canyon stretchs. Stop by the shop for information on stretches that may be safer options.
Dries| Elk Hair Caddis: 12-16, PMD patterns: 14-18, Renegade: 16-18-20 Water Walkers: 4-6, Chubby Chernobyls: 8-16
Nymphs| Bubble Back BWO: 16-18, BH Pheasant Tail: 14-16-18, Green Machine: 18-20, CDC Pheasant Tail: 12-14-16-18, Rubberlegs Olive, Olive/Brown: 6-8-10, Ugly Bug: 4-6-8, Red Belly Yuk Bug: 2-4 Coppertone Delektable: 6-8 Lightning Bug Pearl, Gold, Purple: 14-16 IED Worm: 10 Copper Johnson Yellow, Red, Blue: 12-14-16-18
Streamers| JJ Special: 4- 6 Sculpzilla's Tan, Olive, Black: size 4-6 Haymaker Sculpin Olive, Brown: 4 Bellyache Minnow Tan, Olive: 1/0-1 Micro Zonker Tan, Olive, Black: 8 Fatheads Yellow: 2 Sex Dungeon Yellow, Rust, Natural: 2 Home Invader Yellow, Olive Space Invader: 2 Flash Fry Brown & Yellow: 2 Space Invader Brown Yellow, Tan: 2-4-6; Brown/Copper Sparkle Minnow 4-6
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