There’s only one way to describe Black Hills fly fishing right now – great. All of our streams are very fishable, and most are fishing very well.
Rapid Creek below Pactola has been fishing well, with a mixed bag of streamers, nymphs, and dries working. There’s a variety of PMDs, BWOs, and midges hatching so come prepared with a few different patterns. If you’re into streamer fishing, throwing a Lil’ Kim on a sink tip has been really good also! Streamer fishing at the current flows is exciting, and you can see most all of the fish come out and take a swipe at it. In town has been fishing exceptionally well over the past week – I went out for a few hours yesterday and caught a dozen or so nymphing with a Yellow Spot PT. The Caddis hatch in the evening in town is really good as well – Karl went out and skittered up quite a few during the late evening. We’ve got a fresh batch of caddis patterns in at the shop – swing by and check them out!
Spearfish Creek has been fishing very well, both in the canyon and in town. Hoppers have been fishing well in town, and there’s talk of them being good bets in the canyon as well. Nymphing has been my moneymaker in Spearfish lately, with jigs in size 12-16 with a smaller midge or BWO dropper being a good idea behind it.
Spring Creek has been fishing well, but it’s getting a bit hot. Get out in the early mornings and leave them be in the afternoons when the water gets hot – the fish will thank you. There’s a fair number of rainbows being caught, as well as some larger browns. Nymphing has been the preferred technique, but there’s caddis hatching most of the day. Streamers are also a good bet for the larger fish! This is a great option for beginners and people just learning to fly fish.
Crow Creek and Sand Creek are the hopper and terrestrial fishing meccas of the Hills right now – the fish will move quite a ways to crush a hopper pattern. Chubbies and Morrish Hoppers have been solid bets. On these two creeks, make sure you fish everything – most of the big fish I’ve caught have been in a foot of water or less. As always, be cautious of snakes if you’re headed that direction.
All of the smaller streams are fishing great! If you like smaller wild trout on dry flies, now is the time to get your 3 weight and some attractor dries out. Upper Spring, Castle, Ditch, Elk, Little Elk, and Box Elder Creeks are all fishing well. The fish aren’t terribly selective as a rule, and a handful of terrestrial attractor patterns will keep you into the fish all day.
That’s a wrap on current conditions! If you have any questions about other waters, feel free to give us a call or swing by the shop. The fishing this fall is going to be spectacular, and we’re looking forward to prime water conditions in September and October – both months that we would typically have low water conditions. We’re starting to book up fairly quickly for the early fall, so if you want to hire one of our expert guides, give us a shout and we can get you penciled in for some great Black Hills fly fishing!