Fishing Windows

Sean Visintainer - 05/18/18

Idaho Cutthroat

When the windows are open, go for it!

Fishing windows are those small, short lived opportunities during runoff where the rivers drop enough just enough to allow you a couple days of fun. These windows are tricky to navigate... sometimes they happen on weekends, sometimes they happen during the week. Sometimes they are a few days, sometimes they are a week or two.

Flexibility is the name of the game. Yes, I know not everyone has a flexible schedule. That is certainly a downside to this conversation. IF you have a flexible schedule you should play the window game. We do. I know others that do. Retired? Even better, you can go as you please. I myself like to maintain a flexible schedule during this time of the year as best as I can. I love high water fishing. The best bug hatches of the year are right now.

Just because someone says the words "runoff", "highwater", or "spring" don't just assume the rivers are blown out for the next couple months. We are fortunate to have the NF Coeur d'Alene and St. Joe Rivers which often don't stay too high for very long. Especially the NF Coeur d'Alene. It often drops the fastest, has the least amount of runoff, and plenty of braids, side channels, etc for water to disperse and slow down.

There are windows of opportunity to fish during spring runoff just about every year. Take advantage of them while you can. Some days may be excellent and sometimes it may be just so-so fishing, what I will guarantee is that going fishing on a spring day along the the NF Coeur d'Alene (or St. Joe when it drops a bit) will do wonders for your mental health. The hillsides are getting green, the bugs are are out, wildlife abound, sunshine is frequent, the smells of flowers and pine trees are rich, and perhaps you may just find a fish or two.