The remoteness and low human footprint of our special reserve is undoubtedly a five star wilderness experience.
If you’re on a mission to find a new fly fishing destination that presents those moments of bliss, where you’ll find the most pristine waters on the planet earth, where the fish rarely see humans roaming in their midst, we invite you to experience the South Fork of the Salmon River as our pampered guest at Mackay Bar Ranch.
If you have a passion for catch and release trout fishing in new locations, what you will find on the South Fork Salmon River is a backcountry buffet of trout and other species of fish that will satisfy your lust for a fishing spot where few have trekked. The beauty and peace of this slice of Idaho is a rare privilege and incomparable to any other place else on earth.
Fishing the South Fork is hosted out of our beautiful Salmon River backcountry lodge at Mackay Bar. Close and just around the corner from our wilderness ranch, the confluence of the South Fork Salmon River joins up with the Main Salmon. We can take you by horseback to the South Fork with plenty of food, snacks and beverages, and a pickup after a fine day of fishing. Return by evening to relax in our main dining room, where a hearty evening meal is served along with shared tales of the days adventures, and comfortably stylish private accommodations await your return.
Or, you may want to kick it up a notch or two, and take advantage of our deluxe package:
Deluxe Fly Fisherman’s Wilderness Experience
For the fly fishing group desiring to become more intimate with nature, immersed in a multi-day and night wilderness experience, we’ve put together a 4 day – 3 night experience (or longer if you wish).
We setup and stock our deluxe Wall Tent with delicious ready meals & beverages above the pristine South Fork of the Salmon River. The waters are crystal clear, all fish are catch and release, and some of the largest trout and other species of fish you’ll ever come face to face with, are on the South Fork of the Salmon River. Mackay Bar Ranch is just over the draw from where your camp is setup.
Come Spring season each year, the water warms up and the trout begin to make their runs up the streams. This is the time to catch the big trout on the South Fork of the Salmon! You can catch rainbow, cutthroat, and Dolly Varden. The trout fishing is excellent all summer long right up until fall when steelhead starts up again.
ABOUT THE SOUTH FORK OF THE SALMON RIVER
The South Fork system supports populations of resident fish species, such as trout and char, and anadromous species.
The South Fork of the Salmon River drainage lies in central Idaho in Valley and Idaho counties. The drainage flows northerly through the Idaho batholith and enters the Salmon River at Mackay Bar. Elevations vary from 9,280 feet msl at North Loon Mountain to 2,166 feet msl at the mouth.
The land is characterized by extreme changes in elevation and aspect within short distances. Topography varies from steep canyon lands to meadows. The Idaho batholith soils consist largely of weathered granitic sands and fines and are sensitive to disturbance. Precipitation averages 32 inches annually, with major storm events occurring about every ten years.
Resident fish species, including rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, bull trout, mountain whitefish, brook trout, lake trout, and a few small mouth bass species.
Fishing on the South Fork Salmon River is strictly catch and release.