The rumor mill is running overtime in the valley. Salmon flies have been reported from sportsmans to glen. I am sure that bugs have been spotted, but not by myself. I floated from silver bridge to melrose on Friday and did not lay eyes on any big bugs, however, I have still been getting a few eats on the big bug here and there. I for one am very happy that the bugs are holding tough through this next cold spell, I will be looking forward to the larger push of bugs to begin in the middle of next week.
The streamers have been great. With the clear water and warming temps the fish have been much easier to pull out of their hiding spots. We have been using a wide variety of bugs including black buggers, gold and silver Kreelex, JJ’s special, and cream sex dungeons. I expect that the fish will be fired up as this low front sits on us for a couple of days, so don’t let the rain wash the determination off your face!
As an overall picture, the best combos have been turds and worms in the morning, moving to a big dry dropper rig in the afternoon, something salmon fly size with a black rubber legs underneath. As the day warms up the caddis have been getting a few fish up in the slow, foamy pockets. If the dries are not getting it done go with the big hole dredge while bumping the streamer under the willows and down the deep seams. Timing will vary depending on the section of river that you are fishing but as far as I can tell, the Big Hole is fishing well from top to bottom if you are willing to switch rigs and optimize your chances.