ROW offers both float and walk-and-wade trips on the St. Joe. The lower stretches of the river are typically used for our float trips, while the upper stretches of the river lend themselves more to walk-and-wade trips. Long considered one of North Idaho’s best-kept secret in the world of fly-fishing, this jewel of a river is brimming with wild cutthroat and rainbow trout.
"The best trout fishing (in Idaho), in my experience, is on the St. Joe, reached by Interstate 90 from Missoula or Spokane, and then over the Bitterroots on gravel roads. I shouldn't give this up; my two fishing brothers are going to kill me for this. But in sections of the St. Joe the trout are so easy to catch you want to give them pointers on dodging the cheap fly. They're cutthroats, some as big as 18 inches. They don't fight as much as rainbows, but they're abundant, and rise on cue to any decently presented dry fly. Trout Unlimited called the St. Joe the best cutthroat trout fishery on the west side of the Rockies."
- New York Times, "The Last Wilderness" July 1, 2007
At ROW, we have been guiding trips on the St. Joe since 1986, longer than any other outfitter on the river. We are excited to share this unforgettable experience with you! Schedule your St. Joe fly-fishing adventure today to enjoy some of the best fishing the Northwest has to offer.
The magnificent Saint Joe is a traditional Westslope Cutthroat Trout fishery boasting an impressive population of the native cutthroat trout. This scenic river beckons to beginners and seasoned fishermen alike to enjoy bountiful catches of fish ranging anywhere from 8" to 22". The mesmerizing emerald waters of the St. Joe flow gracefully around pocket pools, dotted with rocky stepping-stones, and offers numerous riffles. Our fly-fishing season on the St. Joe begins in late May and guests continue to enjoy an abundant trout population through the late spring and summer and even through the fall. Several different hatches can be found along the St. Joe, including Stone Flies, May Flies, Caddis, and Terrestrials.
Winding more than 130 miles through a scenic Idaho wilderness from its source high in the Bitterroot Mountains to Lake Coeur d'Alene, the St. Joe River is a Blue Ribbon trout fishery, offering some of the region's best fly-fishing. Protected by Congress through the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act as well as Idaho Fish and Game regulations, the waters of the St. Joe have been cultivated into one of the West's finest trout fisheries. At ROW, we are proud to have exclusive commercial outfitting rights for a generous stretch of the St. Joe, allowing us to offer our gusts private access to areas usually fished only by locals.
Our experienced fly fishing guides will prove to be indispensable as they aid you in selecting the perfect flies and position you along the river to enjoy a plentiful haul. Fly-fishermen along the St. Joe find that the fish readily rise to dry flies throughout the day. In fact, approximately 85 percent of all of the flies used on the St. Joe are dries of one variety or another. It is not unusual to enjoy catching up to thirty trout, or even more, during a day on the St. Joe.