Fishing on Rapid Creek and Spearfish Creek has been good over the past several weeks, and many of the smaller streams will start fishing well with the longer days and warmer weather. Nymph fishing has been the best bet most days, but there has been some good dry fly fishing on Rapid Creek in town.
Rapid Creek below Pactola is low and cold, and the fishing has been spotty. Nymph fishing will be your best option for most of the day, but there has been a decent midge hatch that has been getting some fish up to the surface midday. Good nymphs to try include Green Weenies, Black Beauties, Split Back BWOs, Two Bit Hookers, Flashback Pheasant Tails, and various midge larvae patterns. The water is low, so most of the fish are stacked up in the slower, deeper runs. If you run into rising fish, try a Morgan's Midge, Eric's Midge, F Fly, Griffith's Gnat, or small parachute in size 18-22. There should be a few BWO's starting soon, but we haven't seen a lot of them yet.
Rapid Creek in town has been fishing great. There is a really good BWO hatch from 11-2 or so, and there are lots of fish up on them. CDC Thorax Duns, F Flies, Students, Trigger Point Mayflies, and Sparkle Duns are good dries in size 16-18. There are lots of fish that are rising in shallower runs, so make sure and fish some of the in-between water that you might normally walk past. If you are out before or after the BWO hatch, nymph fishing has been really good as well. We've mostly been fishing dry-droppers, but you can fish an indicator rig in the deeper spots. Use a Klinkhamer, User Friendly, Stimulator, or small Hippie Stomper as the dry. For the dropper, try an olive, purple, or peacock Perdigon, Skinny Jig, Flying Zebra, or Split Back BWO in size 16-20.
Spearfish Creek has been fishing great both in the canyon and in town. The Canyon is fishing well, particularly in spots that see more sun and stay warmer. Nymph fishing is your best bet, mostly with smaller patterns. Perdigons, olive or brown Skinny Jigs, Zebra Midges, Split Back BWOs, and French Dips are good bets in size 14-18. Most of the fish are in the deeper runs that have a decent amount of current, but we found a few fish in the faster pocket water as well last week. There are a few BWOs hatching in the canyon as well - the same flies as Rapid Creek will work well. Spearfish Creek in town is fishing well also, with slightly larger flies than the canyon. Jig Yellow Spots, Soft Spots, Skinny Jigs, Mop Flies, and various small dropper patterns will work well in town.
Sand Creek and Crow Creek have some of the best BWO hatches in the area right now. CDC Thorax Duns, F Flies, Students, Hackle Stackers, Comparaduns, and Brook's Sprout Emergers are good flies in size 16-18. Stealth is the key on both of these streams, particularly since the water is pretty low right now. The best hatch is typically from 10-2 or so.
Castle Creek below Deerfield is starting to fish well with the warmer weather. As with most other area streams, there are BWOs hatching, particularly on cloudy or overcast days. The same flies as other places will work well on Castle. Nymph fishing is good with small midge and BWO nymphs.
Lake fishing should start to get good for rainbows on Black Hills lakes as they thaw out over the next couple of weeks. Leeches or jig nymphs fished under an indicator will work well.
Fishing has been good and will continue to be good for the foreseeable future. With the drier weather pattern we have been having, the fishing this spring may be some of the best fishing we have all year. Give us a call or swing by the shop for the latest intel or if you'd like to book a day with one of our guides!