Blind Casting

Sean Visintainer - 06/02/17


Prospecting with dries

Sometimes I notice trends with the angling public that perk my ears occasionally and get me thinking that perhaps more folks might be doing / thinking the same thing so maybe I should do a post about it. This happens to be one of those times. This spring I picked up on various conversations around the shop that anglers are not fishing dries unless they see rising fish. Interesting I thought to myself. To me being in cutthroat country means throwing dries more often than not because cutthroat seem so willing to rise to the surface more than any other fish. Not saying that is the only tactic, nor that is the case everyday, nor that cutthroat are dumb they just tend to be more user-friendly towards the surface. Certainly not complaining!

On our rivers, and by that I mean the Spokane, Coeur d'Alene, and St. Joe, you don't necessarily see tons of rising fish. Or you see sporadic risers. Perhaps that is because our hatches tend to be less intense than other destinations such as the Missouri and similar bug factory fisheries. Not sure why really. But what I do know is that from March through early November the dry fly fishing is pretty consistent on a daily basis. There may be times of the day that it is more optimum, or insect activity is at it's peaked, but overall fishing dries is pretty damn good in this neck of the woods. I feel we have some of the best, most consistent dry fly fisheries anywhere in the country.

Especially this time of the year around Memorial Day Weekend one could fish dries virtually the entire day and find fish to some degree. Covering the water with some good prospecting patterns that can either represent current insects hatching, or attractors can pay off, even when no fish are visibly present on the surface. No love on the dry, cycle through some patterns. If you are dialed on what "should" be hatching then odds are high you can bring some fish to the surface blind casting along our wonderful dry fly rivers like the St. Joe or NF Coeur d'Alene.

Don't know where to start? These are some good dry fly patterns to prospect with on the NF Coeur d'Alene and St. Joe during the month June...

June Fly Patterns for the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene and St Joe Rivers

First Column Second Column Third Column
BJ's Salmonfly Trigger Belly Giant Para Drake
Gypsy King Golden Chubby Chernobyl Para Drake Brown
CDC Stone Golden Willy's Ant Gold Last Chance Cripple Drake
Larimer Stone Designated Hitter CDC Thorax Drake
Large Para Adams