Provo River Fishing Report
July 16, 2017

brown trout in netBoth the Middle and Lower sections of the Provo River are still higher than normal, but are headed back towards more normal summertime flows.

The snow melt from the high country is basically over, yet the water managers continue to release more water than normal.

As of this morning, the Middle Provo was running at 502 cfs below the Jordanelle dam and the Lower Provo was being released at 619 cfs below the Deer Creek Dam.

There have been reports of a sporadic Green Drake hatch on the Middle Provo and a friend reported catching fish on top with green drake patterns below the dam. We were more curious this week to see what we could find on the Lower Section of the Provo.

We had good success bouncing sow bugs and very small (size 22) nymphs.

The section we fished is best fished when the water is running at 400 cfs or less, but was still running about 690 cfs. We found fish in new lanes closer to the bank than usual.

We dodged lots of rafters that were trying to beat the heat, but unless you hook one, they don’t affect the fishing much and we saw few other anglers the entire day.

We found an 18 inch dead brown trout that was hooked to the bottom by fishing line it was trailing. The fish had been caught on a night crawler, which is definitely illegal in that section. We hope this was a mistake and not a deliberate violation, but it is everyone’s responsibility to explain the rules to those that don’t know and to call “the Man” if they refuse to listen.

I can not count the times I’ve re-directed people that were fishing with night crawlers or power bait to areas on the river where those baits are legal. We’ve also had to remind folks that those 20 inch rainbows have to be released in certain sections of the river. The 15 inch rule is the only reason big fish are still there to be caught.

Report wildlife and fishing violations by calling 1-800-662-3337. Many cell phones can simply dial *DEER.

Back to fishing…

Normally, we use 4x tippet with 4X – 6X tags for our bounce rig, but since Jim had fish break off earlier in the week, we were using 3X tippet. Even then, Jim had another fish break off before he could set the hook. That fish had to be a very large rainbow.

We fished near another fisherman that was bouncing “store-bought” silver/gray sow bugs and prince nymphs. He was also able to catch fish on that sow bug.

But we found the big fish were actually hitting the small nymph faster than the sow bug. We landed both rainbows and browns (16-18 inches) on the tiny nymph.

We lost several nice fish, but the best way to play large fish on tiny hooks is with constant side pressure.

It was fun for me to catch small mouth back east last week, but I was glad to get back into the groove and catch fish in our home waters.

Want to go fly fishing with us or would you like to get some instruction on fishing fishing? Schedule a guided fly fishing trip or a fly fishing lesson – Learn More.

Hope to see everyone at the Heber Valley Fly Fishing Festival August 11 -12 at Hamlet Park in Midway (just uphill from the Legacy Bridge).

Our local Fly Fishing Festival has become the largest free festival in the country. Everyone should check it out.

Fishing Report provided by Jim O’Neal & BackcountryChronicles.com

Watch our fly fishing videos here at Jim’s You Tube site.

Our video – Catching Big Trout on Little Flies

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