Rapid Creek continues to fish very well through Rapid City. Flows have been increased below Pactola Reservoir which has made for much better fishing in the tailwater. Hatches of midges and Baetis continue to offer superb dry fly fishing nearly every day. The surface activity starts as early as 8:00 am and can last until mid afternoon. Typically the hatches start earlier on warmer mornings. Fishing with size 18-20 midge adult patterns and size 16-18 Baetis dries is the ticket. We have had good luck with Griffith’s Gnats, Sipper Midges, Students, CDC Thorax Duns, and CDC baetis.
Little Black Stoneflies continue to hatch from Johnson Siding up to the Pactola dam. The little black stonefly hatch is one of the best early season hatches, and can bring even the largest fish up to the surface. F-Fly patterns continue to be the best imitation during the hatch. If the hatch isn’t happening, the fish are plenty willing to hit a nymph.
Throughout Rapid Creek try an attractor dry indicator with a jig nymph dropper- this is one of our go to setups lately. Try a Hippie Stomper with any size 16 tungsten jig- Pheasant Tail, Hare’s Ear, or Brush Hog. It’s been deadly, and you get the occasional fish that hits the attractor.
Streamer fishing is good throughout the stream – try little kims, orange blossom specials, and sculpzillas.
Spearfish Creek has been fishing very well through town and in the Canyon. Little Black stoneflies are hatching throughout the canyon. You will find more midge and Baetis activity once you get down into town. Use the same flies for these hatches as those on Rapid Creek. For nymphing, be sure to try Czech nymphing- it’s been incredibly effective this spring on Spearfish Creek. Rainbow Czech nymphs and Quill Jigs are working extremely well throughout the creek. – Not much change here- so this is the same paragraph from last weeks report!
Castle Creek- Good fishing at the mouth of Deerfield lake up to the confluence of Ditch and Castle Creeks. Mostly nymphing at this point above the lake- try red copper john’s above the lake. Below the lake, little black stones are starting to hatch. Excellent opportunity to find big brookies on dries. Baetis will be hatching in the afternoons- especially if there is cloud cover.
Crow Creek will have good fishing, and increasingly good dry fly fishing. Baetis and midge hatches are happing most mornings.
Warmwater fishing is picking up- Pike fishing has been more consistent on prairie lakes. The larger reservoirs in the Hills- Pactola and Sheridan- have been improving by the day. So far black flies have been the best producer on Pactola. Keep at it, we have been sighting some huge fish. Bass fishing will start to improve over the next few weeks, start with smaller streamer and a slower retrieve. As the water warms, the fishing will pick up and you can expect to find more fish near the shore lines.