Copyright 2013 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Guide to the Henry's Fork of the Snake River
It is impossible to outline everything you would need to know or do to fish the
Henry's Fork successfully day in and day out. The biggest problem with doing that is
the diversity of the water itself. We have already said it could be described as a
spring creek or a tailwater and it also has many freestone stream characteristics.
What we will try to do here is to describe the types of fishing and water in its different
sections of water.
The best way to approach the Henry's Fork is to think of it as either smooth or rough
water sections. The area pictured above on your left is smooth water. Its surface
stays fairly smooth without riffles and runs or pools. Some describe it by comparing it
to a flooded parking lot. That really isn't true because the bottom does go up and
down. There are deeper areas and shallow areas and sometimes only inches apart.
You can wade across it just about anywhere, so there is little water that is very deep.
The bottom has a solid mass of aquatic vegetation that is part of the cause of its
tricky currents. Getting a drag free drift isn't easy. In fact, you have to fish
downstream to many fish in order to fool them. I am fishing upstream in the above
image but most of the time, I am fishing downstream. In this section the usual best
method is to find a feeding trout and fish to it. Blind casting is usually unproductive.
In the image to your right, I am fishing in an upstream direction. Although you can't
see them very well, this section of the river has runs and riffles. This particular place
is downstream of Ashton Dam. There are islands in the water just below me. Here
you would fish upstream and you can catch trout blind casting in the current seams.
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Henry's Fork of the Snake