Black Hills streams continue to fish quite well. Not as much rain as the week prior, but enough showers and storms to keep flows mostly the same as the last report. We are expecting hot weather through the weekend. With fewer storms in the pipeline, we should see flows drop over the coming days. Monday will see the daily high temp return to near normal. For the weekend, fish up higher in the hills to find cooler weather and cooler water. It's probably time to start carrying stream thermometers again. Flows should be high enough and nights cool enough for lower elevation fisheries to stay cool. However, it’s always worth double-checking. Remember, to protect the fishery, if water temps reach the high 60s, it’s time to find a new place to fish.
Hatches are picking up. We saw Trico hatches begin on Rapid Creek in town this week. The hatch starts around 7 and lasts to around 10 am. That could shift earlier during the warmer part of the weekend. Caddis and PMD hatches are picking up around the Hills. Still a few BWOs on the tailwaters. Seeing a few Little Yellow Stoneflies as well. Don’t forget about terrestrials too- beetles, ants, and small hopper patterns.
Flow Changes- Last Report to Now June 9th to June 16th 2022
- Rapid Creek above Pactola near Silver City- 105 CFS to 103 cfs
- Rapid Creek below Pactola Reservoir- 108 to 106 cfs
- Rapid Creek in Town- 130 cfs to 124 cfs
- Castle Creek above Deerfield- 18 to 17.4 cfs
- Castle Creek below Deerfield- 25 CFS to 24.6 cfs
- Spearfish Creek at Spearfish- 107 CFS to 85.1 cfs
- Dries– Micro Chubby Chernobyls, Elk Hair Caddis, Sparkle Dun BWO, Sparkle Dun PMD, Foam Beetle
- Nymphs– Tungsten Jig Halo, Tungsten Blue Diamond Perdigon, Zebra midges, RS2s, Bubble Back Midges, Frenchies
- Streamers– Lil Kim, Kreelex
Rapid Creek above Pactola reservoir is fishing well. Water level is about the same as last week. This will change with the dryer weather coming in the next few days. Stick with larger nymphs and streamers for the time being. Large prince nymphs, pats rubber legs, and streamers are great options.
Below Pactola the fishing has been typical of this tailwater. Nice fish that can be picky. Great option for anglers seeking a bit of a challenge. Fishing will typically be better in the afternoon as bug activity picks up. Caddis, PMDs, and some Baetis are hatching, creating good dry fly fishing opportunities. Nymph fishing has picked up as well. Try a tungsten split case PMD or Baetis Nymph with a small RS2 dropper.
Rapid Creek in town continues to be quite good. Check the water temps later in the day Friday-Sunday. Water temps could jump with the high temps. Try slightly larger tungsten jig nymphs (12-14s) with smaller droppers. RS2s and other emergers are working well. Dry dropper fishing with a chubby Chernobyl continues to work as well. Some of the larger fish have pushed into fast shallow riffles, so don’t overlook shallower runs and riffles.
Castle Creek is a great option for the warmer weather days this weekend. The higher elevation moderates the temperature nicely. The stream is in great shape above and below Deerfield Reservoir. Flies for Castle Creek are similar to those below Pactola. Dry Dropper Rigs are an option as well. Smaller Chubby Chernobyls or Hippie Stompers (12-16s) are a good choice for the lead fly in the dry dropper rig.
Spearfish Creek is in good shape in the Canyon and in town. Flows have dropped over the week, making the stream more accessible and fishing better. Nymphing is quite good right now. We like TNT Baetis Jigs, jig assasins, perdigons, and mic drop jigs. Dry fly fishing was good this past week and should continue to be. Blue Winged Olives, caddis, little yellow stones, and a mix of yellow mayflies are hatching throughout the day.
The recent rains have perked up Box Elder and Spring Creeks. Keep an eye on the stream temperatures this weekend. Especially on Spring Creek. The stream will warm up considerably below Sheridan Lake. Caddis are hatching on both Spring and Box Elder. Dry dropper rigs are a great option for both. Nymph fishing the deeper runs and pools is always productive.
For more updates swing by the shop. See you soon!