Black Hills Fishing Report - 3/15/2016

The weather is finally looking a bit more seasonable outside today, with some moisture in the forecast over the next few days. The fishing has been pretty darn good over the past week. We've had a number of guided trips out, and they've all come back with stories of success! After a short hiatus in the nice weather over the next couple days, the warm weather will return this weekend. It's going to be a great weekend to be out on the water! Rapid Creek has been one of the most consistent options as of late. Fishing in town has been fantastic, with some great dry fly fishing to boot. There's midges, Blue Winged Olives, and even a few Skwala stoneflies. The fish have been taking notice of the BWO's especially, and the dry fly fishing has been outright fantastic some days! The emergers are an especially important stage of the hatch most days, especially when it's cloudy and cooler. Nymphing has been great in town as well. We did really well on a guided trip Sunday fishing 'mini-rigs' in really skinny water. Tungsten Psychos, Two Bit Hookers, and Tungsten Split Case BWO's a foot under a pinch-on indicator was the ticket. If you're nymphing the deeper water, standard jigs and larger tungsten nymphs will do the trick. Tungsten Rainbow Czechs, Jig PT's, Jig Assassins, Jig Soft Spots, and Tung Teasers in size 12-16 will do the trick. Below Pactola has been fishing pretty good as well, but the fish have been a little more tricky. Nymphing has been the most consistent option. Try Boat Anchor Scuds, Hunchback Scuds, Tungsten Rainbow Czechs, and San Juan Worms for a lead pattern. Trail with a Two Bit Hooker, Split Back BWO, your favorite flavor of midge, or a Three Dollar Dip for best results. There were a good number of midges on the water a couple of days ago, but most of the bigger fish weren't taking much notice of the bugs. I'd give it a couple more days and they'll probably be more responsive to them. Streamer fishing is another option, with some big fish being taken lately on some pretty hefty flies. Lil' Kims, Home Invaders, Peanut Envys, and Sex Dungeons are a few of my favorite patterns. Fish 'em on a light sink tip for best results! I'd look for Silver City to be a viable option in the next couple weeks, as long as we don't get any crazy moisture.
Solid In-Town fish!
Spearfish Creek has been fishing great as well, both in the canyon and in town. Nymphing has been the method of choice for most folks. Jigs are some of our favorites here as always, with Jig Assassins and Jig Pheasant Tails being a couple solid producers that we always have with us. Dave guided up here several days last week, and said that Barr's Tung Teasers in smaller sizes were good patterns as well. In the canyon, I'd definitely be fishing with some sort of midge or BWO dropper right now. Green Weenies, Tungsten Split Back BWO's, Bubble Backs, and my favorite, Three Dollar Dips are all good bets. There's been some limited dry fly action in the canyon as well, mostly in the really slow sections and in Savoy and Maurice. Midges are most predominant, so have a couple F-Flies or Morgan's Midges just in case. The BWO's should start soon as well!
Beautiful Canyon Rainbow! Beautiful Canyon Rainbow!
There's been some great reports coming out of Castle Creek lately, with word of a fantastic BWO hatch below the dam and some really nice brookies! These fish aren't going to be particularly selective most days, so a number of different flies will work. CDC Thorax Duns, F-Flies, Students, and Comparaduns will all work great in a 16-22 depending on the day and the fish's mood. Nymphing with the same patterns as Rapid Creek will fish just fine as well. Above the lake is good fishing as well, with a lot of smaller wild brookies being caught. It's a great place to take someone that's new to fly fishing, or if you're just feeling like catching some easier fish! Crow and Sand Creeks are fishing great. Dry fly fishing has been the method of choice here for the last several weeks, and that continues to be the case. The hatch is a combination of midges and BWO's, so have a good selection of both. CDC Thorax Duns, F-Flies, Students, Sparkle Duns, and even Parachute Adams in sizes 16-22 have all been successful patterns lately, but don't be afraid to try something new as well. The fish on these two creeks generally aren't super selective as to fly patterns, but they are pretty darn spooky. Walk slowly and keep your eyes peeled for fish in unlikely places and you'll find a bit more success! Spring Creek both above and below Sheridan Lake has been fishing well. Standard nymph fare will work great either place, but maybe drop a small midge like a Green Weenie below if the fish get a bit pickier. Another great option is to fish a small dark streamer on a slow strip or even dead drift. There's been a bit of a midge hatch below the dam also, but the fish have been incredibly picky. Take some small dries and 6-7x tippet, and monkey with them if you feel so inclined and aren't afraid to get a bit frustrated! Streamer fishing has been great as well, with Kreelexes and Lil' Kims being good bets. Overall, the fishing has been fantastic and we've been able to start going a few different places. There's been some great warmwater fishing on the prairie already, and there's even been a few pike caught on Pactola already. All of the small streams are starting to fish very well and have opened up completely for the most part. Give us a call or stop by for an up to date fishing report, to book one of our expert Black Hills Fly Fishing guides, or to just pick up a few flies and tippet before you head out! Ryan