Blue Stream Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Report for:

Payette River - Middle Fork - Idaho

Hatch Chart - Best Access/Spots - Local Fish - About

Water Flow Chart

Using Water Flow Charts & Weather Reports: Begin with our water flow charts to grasp stream velocity and volume – look for stable or rising trends to pinpoint ideal fishing times. Learn to interpret sudden spikes or drops, which can indicate potential challenges. Next, consult our weather reports to understand ambient conditions. Pairing the two, you can anticipate fish behavior, choose the right gear, and select the best fishing spots. Use these tools together for a holistic approach to your next fishing adventure.

In-Depth Weather

Directions To Location

Hatch Chart

Month Hatch Time of Day Recommended Fly Sizes Popular Fly Patterns
January Midges Afternoon #18-24 Zebra Midge
February Midges Afternoon #18-24 Griffith's Gnat
March Midges Afternoon #18-24 Zebra Midge
Blue Winged Olives Noon-4pm #16-20 Pheasant Tail Nymph
April Blue Winged Olives Noon-4pm #16-20 Comparadun Blue Winged Olive
Skwala Stoneflies Morning and evening #8-10 Bullet Head Skwala
May Blue Winged Olives Noon-4pm #16-20 Pheasant Tail Nymph
Skwala Stoneflies Morning and evening #8-10 Pats Rubber Legs
Green Drakes Afternoon #10-14 Green Drake Cripple
June Green Drakes Afternoon #10-14 Sparkle Dun
Caddis Evening #14-16 Elk Hair Caddis
Salmonflies All day #4-6 Pats Rubber Legs
July Caddis Evening #14-16 X Caddis
Golden Stoneflies Afternoon #8-10 Stimulator
August Tricos Early morning #18-22 Trico Spinner
Hoppers All day #6-10 Dave's Hopper
September Hoppers All day #6-10 Chubby Chernobyl
October Blue Winged Olives Noon-4pm #16-20 RS2
October Caddis Evening #8-12 October Caddis Pupa
November Midges Afternoon #18-24 Zebra Midge
December Midges Afternoon #18-24 Griffith's Gnat

While we strive to ensure the precision of our hatch charts, some reflect broader river region insights. Through ongoing partnerships with local guides and fly shops, we’re committed to refining our data. Should you notice any inconsistencies or have feedback, we welcome you to reach out. 

Best Fishing Spots

The Middle Fork of the Payette River offers fantastic fly fishing opportunities. Here are some of its best spots:

  • Warm Lake: Near Landmark, this lake feeds the South Fork and is ideal for fishing using dry flies, damsel nymphs, and streamers.
  • Big Eddy: Located downstream from Crouch, this pool-type river bend is perfect for casting large streamers and nymphs.
  • Trail Creek Bridge: A popular public-access spot, it’s excellent for fishing using small nymphs and dry flies.
  • Jackson Creek: Anglers here can expect to catch trout using a variety of flies including stoneflies, mayflies, and caddisflies.

Please remember to follow all state and local fishing regulations while enjoying your fly fishing adventure on the Middle Fork of the Payette River.

Best Access Points

The Middle Fork of the Payette River offers some fantastic spots for fly fishing. A few of the best access points include:
  • Pine Flats Campground: Located towards the upper end of the river, this campground provides direct access to the river and features a diverse fish population.
  • Crouch Access Point: Positioned in the town of Crouch, at the junction of Highway 17 and Middle Fork Road. Features a great fishing spot below the bridge.
  • Boise National Forest: Provides numerous access points along Middle Fork Road. Look for signage indicating public river access.
  • Danksin Bridge Access Point: Sited near the junction of Middle Fork and South Fork. An excellent spot for rainbow trout.
  • Scotch Creek Access Point: Situated in the lower part of the river, a renowned area for both river and creek fishing.
Always ensure to verify the current fishing regulations and necessary permissions before fishing at any location.

Local Fish

  • Westslope Cutthroat Trout: This trout species is a popular target for fly fishers due to its frequent surface feeding habits.
  • Rainbow Trout: Known for their vibrant colours and the sportiness, Rainbow Trout are a sought-after species on the Payette River – Middle Fork.
  • Brown Trout: Brown Trout are elusive but highly desirable due to their size and the fight they put up when hooked.
  • Mountain Whitefish: Although primarily bottom feeders, Mountain Whitefish eagerly take fly and can provide for steady action.
  • Bull Trout: Known for their aggressiveness, Bull Trout frequently seek out larger prey making them an exciting catch.
  • Brook Trout: Although small in size, Brook Trout are plentiful and relatively easy to catch, perfect for beginners.
  • Salmon (Chinook): While not as frequently found, the Chinook Salmon is a prized catch on the Payette River – Middle Fork.
  • Steelhead: Steelheads are heavily sought after due to their size and the challenge they present during the battle.

About The River

The Payette River – Middle Fork boasts a certain charm that is rooted in its rich history. This free-flowing river, known for its sizzling whitewater rapids and beautiful sapphire-blue color, cascades through the wonderfully rugged landscape of Idaho in the United States.

It might surprise you that this mesmerizing river has been influenced by both glacial activity and volcanic activity in the past. These geological phenomena have gifted the river with unique rock formations and a captivatingly complex ecosystem.

Traditionally, the Native American Shoshone Tribe relied on this river for both transportation and sustenance. In later years, the river played a key role during the gold rush, providing a vital lifeline for miners hoping to strike it rich.

  • The river is home to a variety of wildlife, including trout, elk, and numerous bird species.
  • The Middle Fork of the Payette River offers world-class whitewater rafting with rapids ranging from class 2 to 5.
  • It’s also revered for its breathtaking natural beauty and stunning vistas of the surrounding wilderness.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a thrill-seeker, or a nature lover, the Payette River’s Middle Fork surely has something to captivate you.


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