Small Creek Fishing

Fly Fishing Small Creeks

When Fly Fishing Idaho my preference has always been to go after big trout.  I love fishing the big rivers and hunting the larger trout that cruise the edges or hide around structure with big, nasty streamers.  Don’t get me wrong, I do love throwing dries, but I prefer to throw them to big fish on the Snake river during the epic stonefly or drake hatches.  However, I’ve always appreciate those that seek smaller, harder to get to trout in the small streams.

I’ve got a good fishing buddy, Lucas that loves small creeks.  He is the small creek ninja.  He knows them better than most and knows some that I didn’t even know existed.  Well, we decided to take the younger kids out in a small creek here in Southeast Idaho.  It was a blast and it got the juices flowing.  I can see why the small creekers get the itch!  The kids had a great time, we caught a bunch of small rainbows on top, and experienced an untouched area that is totally pristine.  I immediately went home that night and circled about 8 small creeks that I am jonesing to fish soon.

So my question to the Frenzy Nation is simple:  Do you prefer small creeks or big rivers?  what gets you more excited?

We’d love to hear from you!

kids-N-Streams from Windriver on Vimeo.


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9 Responses to “Small Creek Fishing”

  1. Dave BOETTCHER Says:

    After being introduced to fly fishing on creeks that mostly flowed among granit boulder in the west cenral Sierra, I never felt the need for anything more grand or challenging.

    Hiking into the unknown,seeing no one else that day, talking to the old guys and convincing them to tell where that special little water is located, catching the big Bow of these waters at 10 to a max of 12 inch is simple spectacular.

    If one uses light weight gear and that special cast you have developed to avoid the low branches and to get around car size rock and have your Humpy land softly enough in the plung pool with a 5-10 ft dia, without spooking the trout, the challenge has been meet. But, not until a Rainbow comes out of the water taking the fly and you have landed it around everything you cast through and around, have over come the challenge.

    Then, as you leave, you know there is no bigger water or more difficult fish to land.


    Chubbs Reply:

    Dave, thanks for the comments. Like i said, it sparked something in me fishing those tight spots with my 3 wt that hadn’t been there in a while. i’ve got the bug to go find more. :) If you would ever want to be a guest writer for the frenzy, we would love to post any of your articles. What part of the country do you hail from?


  2. Leigh Says:

    Always fun to get the kids out on the water. Just remember, they have short attention spans and will find the rocks and bugs equally interesting.


    Chubbs Reply:

    So true Leigh. It was funny, my boys loved tunneling threw the brush on the banks. it was sure fun to take them.


  3. Tim Says:

    Big Water, Big Fish. The pinnacle is when you can throw the big dry fly patterns on the Big Western Freestones at just the right time to catch an epic hatch of salmonfly or golden stones. I was lucky enough to hit two perfect days on the Henry’s Fork and South Fork of the Snake this year.

    I think as kids, most of us all started on those small streams. That’s where you catch the fishing bug as a 10 year old. Small streams have their place, especially for us dads that need to take our kids out and pass on that passion of the outdoors and fishing.

    The bottom line, any day on the water is better than work (for us non-guide types). Too bad our significant others don’t always agree. Stay fishing my friends.

    SE Idaho


    Chubbs Reply:

    Well said Tim. There are few things more excited than hitting a big bug hatch perfectly. I’ve had a few days like that on the Henry’s fork. Last year i hit the grey drake hatch perfectly and roped multiple 20 inch plus trout on dries. Awesome stuff.
    And I agree that the kiddos find more attraction to those smaller creeks.
    As far as the significant other help I’m afraid I can’t so much cuz I’m in the same boat. :)
    Fish on my friend.


  4. Jim Says:

    You hit the nail on the head. Spending time on the small water here in south easten Idaho is the entire reason I live here. When the complexities of the cast, the drift, and the swirl all come together and produce fish, that 8 or 9 inch cutt might as well be 23 inches as far as I’m concerned anymore.



  5. Brent Says:

    Small streams and creeks are one of life’s great pleasures, however easily missed. Kids love them and learn to love fishing there. Like Dave I grew up in Northern California – fishing the Middle Fork of the Feather River and it’s many tributaries in Plumas County- mostly small streams. Moving to Utah I spent many an afternoon with my kids on Hobble Creek and up Diamond Fork Canyon. Now that I’m in SE Idaho I’m trying to orient myself with some streams that will be my new favorites.



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