Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Fly fishing for Bass in Southern Idaho

Small-mouth  Bass taken from the Boise near Parma, ID
I am far from an expert on catching the frisky bass, small or large-mouth on a fly rod. However, I did do my fair share of it before I fancied myself a fly fisherman and perhaps the best thing about targeting bass on the fly is that you don't have to go very far in Southern Idaho to find them. I can tell you where I've been, where to look and even what to use and if you can't catch a bass, well then it's January and too cold. I hope that for anyone new to area or the sport that this fly fishing  blog will contain something of value.

A Ben Ross, Large-Mouth
Water temperature is the defining factor when searching for recreational waters that hold bass. Bass thrive in warm water and Southern Idaho, being a high desert environment, has hundreds of man made reservoirs used to collect our scarce water resource and they just happen to be perfect habitat for bass.  For example,  doing a quick https://maps.google.com/ search and one might start to notice that nearly every agricultural valley and region in Southern Idaho, Oregon, and Nevada is paired with a reservoir. It's a safe bet to assume that most major reservoirs in our area hold bass. In fact, I can't think of one large public reservoir that doesn't hold at least one species of bass.  If you live in Boise or the surrounding area you also don't have to go far to find bass. I can easily rattle off a quick list of ponds, lakes and rivers that hold bass within about one hour of Boise: Veterans Pond, Quinns Pond, Horseshoe Bend Pond, Lake Lowell, Lucky Peak, Swan Falls Res., Snake River, Lower Payette River, Black Canyon Res., Indian Creek Res., and the Boise River south of Star, ID. For the adventurous soul looking for a drive and someplace off the beaten path, I recommend Ben Ross, Crane Creek and Paddock Reservoirs which are located northeast of Weiser, ID. I highly recommend Swan Falls reservoir, below the dam on the Snake river, for anyone fly fishing for the first time bass. In late summer this stretch of the Snake river holds awesome numbers of hungry bass with frequent mega hatches making for fast and easy fishing. Take a friend there that you want to get into fly fishing and let the bass do the rest.
Catching bass of a fly rod can be easy if the conditions are right and the fish are aggressive. At these times big, ugly, colorful streams work great and allow you to break out the 2X leader in your pack. Early mornings and late evenings try a popper pattern on top or a mouse pattern and hold on the big one that might blast the surface.

 For all you bass fishermen  Cabelas is tempting this trout guy to become at least a part time bass enthusiast. Here's more info:

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