Bighorn River Fishing Report
Water is low and clear. Water flows are at 2,500 cfs (on the low side) and snowpack is close to normal. Nymph fishing has been good on scud, sowbug, Baetis nymph, and midge pupa patterns. #16 Jelly Bean Sowbugs, #18 Flashback Quill Nymphs, and #18 Zebra Midge have been among the top producers for nymphs. #20 CDC Baetis Sparkle Duns and #20 Sipper Midges work well for dry flies. Fishing is best in the middle of the day and early afternoon. We’ve had some good Baetis hatches (starting around 1:00) and we’re catching some big trout, but the fish are selective. You’ll have to make good presentations multiple times to fool some of the bigger fish. There is some midge surface action early and late in the day. You can encounter small pods or single fish working the surface but be patient. A few fish are being taken on streamers. The float sections below Bighorn Access (down to Mallards and Two Leggins) have generally been unfishable due to muddy tributary streams.
Baetis & Midges
USGS Current Conditions
Hot Fly Patterns
#18 Red Midge Larva; #16,#18 Orange Scud; #14, #16 Soft Hackle Sowbug, #14,#16 Ray Charles (grey or tan), #16,#18 Carpet Sowbug, #18 Zebra Midge; #18 Flashback Quill Nymph; #18 Wonder Nymph
#20, 22 Sipper Midge; #20 CDC Midge; #20, 22 CDC Trude Midge; #18 Griffith's Gnat; #18,20 CDC Sparkle Dun; #20 Smoke Jumper
#6 Grinch, #6 Black Leech; #6 Thin Mint Wooley Bugger (Hale's favorite); #4 Dirty Hippie (cream), #10 Squirrel Leech (black)