YOU ARE GOING TO LOVE THE TETON RIVER
The Teton River has so many different types of water. If you wanted you could only fish the Teton River on your stay with us. You wouldn’t see the same kind of water each day, whether it was the flat spring creek water right in our backyard, or the winding stretches below the lodge or the deep canyon of the narrows.
The Teton is more than just a river to us, it is part of everything we are. This is where everything started. Three generations ago, our great-grandfather started guiding anglers on the Teton River. Fly fishermen from all over the world have visited this one of a kind spring creek. They come for the dry fly fishing.
Mayflies really get going the end of June and continue through October. Sure we get the occasional stonefly or grasshopper, but the mayfly hatches are by far the main source of food for the trout. Both cutthroat and rainbow trout live in the Teton River. Trout populations are way up over years past. If you want to try your hand at the purest form of dry fly fishing, you want to try the Teton River.
Teton River Narrows
Catch What You’ve Been Missing.
STRAIGHT UP, THE TETON RIVER NARROWS WILL GET YOUR BLOOD PUMPING
There are rapids, snakes, and difficult put-ins. The guides handle the put-ins, and the snakes normally don’t bother anyone. The rapids in the canyon are right where the fish are and that is where you want to be.
Our guides are well trained and know how to take you through this type of water with no need for concern. Some of these rapids are big enough that it may be necessary, for safety, to get out of the boat and walk around them while your guide takes the boat through. There are four main floats in the narrows.
Only the upper and middle sections have heavy rapids. All of the floats have huge trout and lots of them. These fish are Rainbows, Rainbow/Cutthroat hybrid, and Cutthroat.
The secluded conditions, along with the fish species, create the prime environment for the fisherman who loves the dry fly. At times it may be necessary to fish a nymph dropper but most of the time a single attractor fly is all that is needed to bring fish after fish to the surface.
The flies you will be using here include stoneflies, hoppers, attractors of every kind, and streamers in some rare instances. Most of our anglers like to spend at least one day in the narrows while at the Lodge each trip.
Teton Valley Lodge was the first to guide this canyon. We broke the trails
These boats are very safe and easy for the guides to handle. Very few people gain or attempt access to the narrows because of the heavy rapids. It is a great feeling to fish all day and usually not see another fisherman.
To access the upper portion of the river, the guide needs to lower the boat down the thousand foot canyon before you even reach the water.
The hike down to the water is steep and the footing is precarious. This is a very good reason why only guests in top physical condition, equal to the hike, go on this float.
THE WATER IS BEAUTIFUL
The lower and lower-lower narrows are best fished from a drift boat. They are somewhat mild compared to the middle and upper floats in terms of white water, but this is a very special part of the river. Teton Valley Lodge has a private access to launch on the lower narrows, which guarantees low fly fishing pressure and fresh fish.
Teton River Valley Sections
The Teton River is home to three types of trout. The native cutthroat, the rainbow and brook trout.
The cutthroat is the most prevalent, in fact, the Teton has one of the strongest holds of native cutthroats found in the West. These native fish are among the most beautiful fish in the world. Their vibrant colors and size make them truly magnificent. The cutthroat on the Teton average 16 inches but are regularly caught at well over 20 inches. This season the largest landed was a 23.5” and last season a 26” cutthroat was caught and released. Rainbows constitute a little less than half of the population of the river. These fish can truly grow to gigantic proportions. The largest in recent memory was a monster of 29 inches in length by 19 inches in girth. As a rule, the fish found in the Teton are big. An average day on the Teton would find its fisherman landing no less than one fish over 20 inches. Every day on this stream gives its fisherman a chance at a fish of a lifetime. Because of these large fish, and the excitement they provoke, the lodge has a special contest just for the Upper Teton. The largest fish caught in this section will win a free 3 day trip for whoever catches it.
Dry fly fishing the Teton River.
The hatches begin as soon as the water clears from run-off, generally near the end of June, and will continue through the month of October. The season begins with the most prolific hatch of the season, the Pale Morning Duns. PMD’s are a beautiful mayfly that will range in color from light yellow to pink, orange, and green. There are times when these insects are so thick upon the water it is nearly impossible to locate your own fly. Fish will feed vigorously upon these mayflies for about a month. Along with the PMD’s, there are a plethora of stoneflies on the Teton. These stones range from a few giant Salmon flies that travel upstream from the Narrows to the droves of small yellow sallys or red tags that hatch. These small goldens range in size from 16 to 8, and are among the trout’s most desired foods. There are times when blankets of PMD’s are drifting downstream with never a look from a fish only to have a golden stone be devoured the second it enters the view of the selective trout.
During the same time period, Green Drakes will be hatching. These monsters of mayflies range from size 14 all the way to an 8.
It is quite an experience to watch these insects emerge from the water, seemingly appearing from nowhere, then drift down the surface of the glassy water to be eaten by the patient trout below. This is the kind of quiet beauty that can make an angler’s heart race. As the season progresses into August, terrestrial insects become very important. There are still mayfly hatches to interest the fish, however small hoppers and flying ants are often the bait of choice. On most streams, August marks the time of year when waters subside. The snow from the mountains has all run-off and fish usually go to deep holes as waters warm. This is not true for the Teton. When the water from the hills decreases in the river, the grass from the bottom of the river grows up. As this happens, it is as if a natural dam has been placed in the river.
The grass displaces the water and the level actually increases in August above that of peak run-off. It is truly unique.
Incredibly, this natural occurrence creates a tremendous habitat to produce great fly fishing in this, the hottest month of the season. While August rolls on, the river reveals one of the most exciting times to be had on a stream, the Grey Drake hatch. It only takes a few days of limited insects for the fish to really key in on the Grey Drakes. Some days there are hundreds of drakes, and others there are few, but the fish will always eat them due to their extreme attraction to them. There are several guests of the lodge that plan their last trip of the year with this river and hatch in mind. Along with the Grey Drakes, Mahogany Duns also provide good action. These smaller mayflies are very prevalent throughout the end of the season.
With all of these insects and large trout, it’s easy to see why the Teton River should be on the list of the finest dry fly streams in the West.
Some anglers find the slow water and rising fish to be intimidating, but it does not take long for them to fall in love with this spring creek. Next time you come to the lodge give it a try and you will be amazed at the treasure that runs right out your cabin door.