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fly fishing the st joe river in Idaho

Fly Fishing on the St. Joe River in Idaho

The St. Joe River runs its course through an amazing, densely forested mountain canyon in the North Central part of Idaho. We offer day fly fishing trips with your choice of either a float trip or a walk-and-wade trip. Join our expert fly fishing guides from March to October and catch a high volume of wild trout in one of the best Blue Ribbon trout streams in America.

St. Joe

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 guests private access to areas usually fished only by locals.

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 offer 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 fall. Several different hatches can be found along the St. Joe, including Stone Flies, May Flies, Caddis, and Terrestrials.

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.

Specializing in Float and Walk-and-Wade Trips

We offer both float and walk-and-wade trips on the St. Joe River. 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

Call 208-770-2517 or 866-836-9340 for any questions.