View from Mackay reservoir
The shacks are out near the boat ramp, however as of Saturday the upper end of the reservoir only had 1 1/2′” of ice near shore. The fishing has been slow, but this writer discovered some fish on Saturday after moving down to the dam end. There are some kokanee being caught, and some pretty good sized rainbows. Jigging Swedish Pimples is very effective, and a pink ratfinkee tipped with bait is great for kokanee.
Jimmy Smith Lake
This lake has been fishing well with the usual jigs tipped with bait, or small jigging spoons. There is a 25 fish limit, and fishermen are reporting bigger trout this year.
Big Lost River
The river is low and clear right now, so stealth fishing is essential. In the colder weather, the best time to catch the midge hatch is from about 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. If the temperatures reach the high 30’s, you may see a Baetis hatch. Zebra Midges, Brassies and red Copper Johns in size 16-22 will work great right now. Just make sure the fish don’t see you first!
The cold weather after Christmas shut down the steelhead fishing for the most part. There is quite a bit of ice through Challis, however the warmer weather this weekend should allow for fishing again down below the Pahsimeroi. There have been fishermen going down below Salmon, jigging in the slush ice and catching a few steelhead. Don’t forget that if the steelhead fishing is slow, winter whitefish fishing can be productive and really fun. Drifting a weighted nymph or small piece of night crawler through deeper holes and the tailouts works well.
Salmon River north of Challis