Bow River Report - End of May 2023

Bow River Report - End of May 2023

The Bow is shaping up nicely after an early and minimal runoff. There's very little snow left in the mountains.This early runoff means we are in for some good early season conditions on the Bow and the Eastern Slopes (once they open next month.) BUT we are really hoping for cooler, wet weather to help maintain flows and water temperatures for the upcoming season. Time will tell!

During Thursday's "birthday float" (Terry and Nancy have the same May birth date - just a few years apart) we had success using every method we tried. Hopper/dropper, nymphing, streamer fishing, AND one on the dry (the only consistent riser we saw.) 


We were pleased to see decent numbers of caddis and skwala adults throughout the day Thursday. We also saw a few Sallies and have heard reports of golden stonefly schucks on the city stretch (although we didn't see any evidence of goldens further downstream.) Water temperature mid-day Thursday was about 15 degrees celsius.

Flies to try: 

Dries: Golden stonefly imitations like the skid bitch, willie's ant, chernobyl as your top fly in a hopper/dropper setup or caddis fly imitations if you see consistent risers. Some of our favorite caddis patterns include Bloom's parachute caddis, peacock caddis, Swisher's dancing caddis. 

Nymphs: You can never go to far wrong if you choose one or two from the Bow river trifecta of san juan worm (SJW), stonefly nymph, leech. Favorite leech patterns of the shop are tied by local tiers and include the peacock leech in traditional or jig style, and Aaron's black BT leech. Fruit rollups and simi-seal leeches are also good bets. SJW options include the heavier wire worm or chenille style like a Reese's Pieces. Stonefly nymph options are plentiful including chenille stones, rubber leg squirrels, TJ hookers. Other nymphs to try include Will's Chai T, prince nymphs, copper johns. 

Streamers: You don't need to go too big with your streamer choices which keeps them easier to cast with your 5 or 6 weight rod. Skiddish smolts in black, black and white clousers, Bow river buggers are all good options. 

Launch updates: 

All Bow river access points are open for the season. 

Note to boat owners/anglers - since it's early in the season double check your boat supplies to ensure you have all the necessary safety items (life jackets, baling bucket, whistle, flashlight, tow rope.) We were checked by Conservation Officers last week who asked to see all of the above. 
Happy Fishing! 






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