In The Loop-Monthly Musings from Henrys Lake Foundation

July 2023

How’s Fishing?


Our annual event is over and once again it was a great success. Thanks to all of you that turned out and continue to support the fishery. We’ll have a complete update mid-month to let you know how we did on the financial side and our goals for the coming year. In the meantime, our monthly update this time will focus on the fishing on Henrys this year.


Catch rates that started off poorly have improved substantially over the past week or so. With that, some impressive fish caught are being caught. Quite a few hybrids in the 5–6-pound class. Fish are still a little finicky and somewhat scattered, but some anglers are consistent. As water temps warm, fish will concentrate more with Targhee normally the July focus. If flows remain decent, Duck Creek can produce as well. Weed growth will start to impair trolling in the coming weeks.


Nathan Tillotson, IDFG biologist, gave a good overview of the fishery at the Henrys Lake Foundation event last Friday. If you missed out, it was a terrific opportunity to learn. He didn't pull any punches and confirmed that the gillnet catch rates were as poor as they've ever been. Nathan also said the spawn run was not great this year and fish were netted in the lake proper to get sufficient egg numbers. To address low abundance, additional fish will be planted this fall.


Fish abundance on Henrys is largely driven by stocking numbers and survival of those fish. Survival is dependent on several factors including Water quality (winter and summer), water temperatures, fish health and fish size at release. Other factors certainly may impact survival as well. Sometimes fish survival remains a question mark. A few years back, one year class had exceptional survival despite a tough winter and relatively low oxygen levels. Sometimes all seems right and survival is poor.


Nathan also discussed recent regulation changes that have been the focus of much debate within the angling community. It doesn’t behoove anyone to elaborate further on that discussion here, but rest assured that the foundation exists because many people care about this fishery. Hundreds if not thousands of anglers believe Henrys is a “special” place that deserves special attention. The eyes of many are watching the fishery and will always challenge the management of the lake. Nathan acknowledged that and indicated he appreciated public opinion and involvement.


The Henrys Lake Foundation exists because our fishery is a destination for many, and people care. Members care enough to ignore their grievances and continue to focus on the bottom line. Protecting and improving the habitat that essential to the ecosystem we call Henrys.

Damon Keen

Vice President

Henrys Lake Foundation  

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