Middle Fork of the Salmon River - Idaho

This 100-mile drift of Idaho's Middle Fork of the Salmon has 32 named rapids, with several class III and IV whitewater rapids. Spectacular and rugged country. Tight Line's is Orvis-Endorsed and runs fishing and rafting trips here in July and August of each year.


Fly Fishing - Drift Boat and Rafting Trips

Alaska rainbow fishing

Dry fly fish for native "west slope" cutthroat along with a few native rainbows and bull trout. Cutthroat average 8" to 15” in length with some in the 20” range. Catch-and-release fishing only. Many feeder creeks offer excellent pocket water for fishing for cutts and native redside rainbows. Their guides are excellent, patient instructors, so no worries if you've never fly fished before. They specialize in dry fly fishing and teaching the art of casting. For safety purposes, only one angler may stand and fish in the boat at a time. Two anglers per drift boat.
Idaho’s Frank Church Wilderness area and the Sawtooth Mountains is certainly one of the most secluded and rugged regions in the lower 48. Carving its way directly through the center of this wilderness area is the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. The class three and four rapids, abundant wildlife, and typically crystal-clear waters make this one of most treasured multi-night camping float trips available anywhere in the western U.S. On a typical Middle Fork trip you will float for roughly 100 miles through an ancient granite rock canyon utilizing classic McKenzie-style drift boats or high-end rafts. This fishery has been managed by the state of Idaho as a catch-and-release fishery since 1973, making it one of the best fisheries in the northwest for both numbers of fish and for consistently good action on a dry fly.

Fly Fishing Facts:

Orvis-endorsed lodge

Season:  Tight Lines runs trips here in July and August.
Boats:  Two anglers per guide and classic McKenzie-style drift boats. All boats are equipped with life jackets, seat cushions and backs, splash tarp, coolers with ice water, and beverages. If you are a serious angler or just want to improve your fishing skills, then nothing compares with fishing from a drift boat. In July, rafts are difficult to stop or are unable to fish the small pockets that a drift boat can.
Guides:  Licensed and experienced guides offer patient fly-casting instruction for the novice and helpful tips for the more experienced angler.
Fishing Equipment:  Each guide will supply the necessary fly fishing equipment. However, you are invited to bring your own if you like.
They use exclusively dry flies such as caddis, stimulators, para-adams, or sofa pillows in the size 8-12 range. Many other dry flies are also effective. Each guide will have floatant for your fly.
Fishing License:   A 6-day Idaho fishing license runs $42.75 (2019) and is not included in the package.
Click here for Idaho Fish and Game.

Tight Lines Fishing and Rafting is operated under a special-use permit with the Salmon-Challis National Forest.

Riverside Camping

Middle Fork Camping

Tents are set up daily before your arrival at that evening’s campsite. Two people per six-person tent, with two cots and two comfortable self-inflating pads. You will need to bring your own sleeping bag. There is a cooking area, a dining area with folding chairs set up around long tables, and his and hers port-a-potty set up within a comfortable walking distance from camp. A hot shower two evenings of the trip. Biodegradable soap is preferred, and no soap may be used directly in the natural hot springs or the river.
Meals: The guides and camp crew are experts in Dutch oven cookery and open fire cooking. Fresh supplies, ice, and beverages are flown to the halfway point. Quality dinner wines, garden-fresh salads, tasty desserts, and Dutch oven specialties.
They cater to special beverage requests and special dietary restrictions.
Meal Times:
8:30 a.m.  Breakfast.
Mid-day:  Lunch on the river.
7:30 p.m.  Dinner.
Communications: A satellite phone is available for emergencies only. Surrounded by 2.3 million acres of wilderness, no cell service is available, and there are no generators in camp.

Getting Here:

The beautiful town of Stanley, Idaho, is where you will meet your group. It's best to arrive the day before your trip for the evening orientation in Stanley. Most guests stay at the Mountain Village Lodge (not included in the package). The next morning, a 1.5-hour bus ride is provided from Stanley to the put-in at Boundary Creek Launch. At the end of your trip, you'll take a two-hour bus ride from the take-out at Cache Bar to Salmon, Idaho. Your car can be shuttled from Stanley to Salmon for $115.00. Car shuttles can be arranged if desired.


2020 Rates:

5-nights and 6-day Trips Guided Fly Fishing Trip:
$3,500.00 per person
Fishing & Rafting Combo:
$2,895.00 per person
Rafting Only:
$2,200.00 per person

2020 Dates:
June 9-14, 18-23
July 5-10, 13-18, 21-26
August 6-11 and 14-19

Cast and Blast:
$2.950.00 per person.
The Cast and Blast is limited to a group of 8 to 12 and covers 52 miles of the Salmon and 20 miles of the Snake River. You'll Fish for steelhead and hunt for chukar from mid-September through October. Dogs are welcome on this trip.
Call Us For Available Dates.
1-800-205-FISH.

Drift boat and Raft-based Fishing Trips includes:

Tent Camping, gourmet meals, wine with dinner, soda, water, and beer on the boat, use of a water-resistant duffel for day-use items, guided fishing, use of fly fishing gear: rod, reel, and go-to flies, and all U.S. Forest Service Fees.

Guided Fishing & Rafting Trip includes:

Tent Camping, gourmet meals, wine with dinner, soda, water, and beer on the boat, use of a water-resistant duffel for day-use items, use of fly fishing gear: rod, reel, and go-to flies, and all U.S. Forest Service Fees.

Packages do not include:

Transportation to and from Stanley, airfare if necessary, the first and last night stay in Stanley, fishing license, fishing tackle and gear for those who are rafting, alcohol—except for wine with dinner and a limited number of beers per guest, items of a personal nature, Global Rescue coverage, Trip Cancellation Insurance, and anything not mentioned under inclusions.

Tight Lines' Deposit Policy:

A 50% deposit is required to reserve your trip space. The final payment is due by June 1st of the year of your trip.

Tight Lines' Cancellation Policy:

If you must cancel, your deposit will be refunded if either you or we can fill the spot(s). If you cancel within 60 days of your start date, you will owe the balance. The balance of your trip will be billed so that it can be received 60 days prior to your start date. Along with your final billing, you will receive a liability and medical information form that must be returned to us along with your final bill. We suggest you buy trip insurance in case of an emergency or illness.

Middle Fork 100-Mile Drift


Cutthroat trout fishing

Cutthroat Trout

Middle Fork Whitewater

Whitewater Rafting

Two anglers per boat

McKenzie Drift Boats

Only one angler may fish at a time

Fly Fishing

32 Named Class Rapids

32 Named Class Rapids

Tappan Falls

Tappan Falls

Fly Fishing at Big Creek

Big Creek

West slope cutthroat

West slope cutthroat

Dutch oven and open fire cooking

Delicious meals

Good cooking in the Great Outdoors

Great Cooking

High-end rafts

Rafting the Middle Fork

Sit-down Meals. Wine is served with dinner.

Cinnamon Rolls

For more information:


Guy Schoenborn

1-800-205-3474 ext. 1

MT Office:  406-322-5709

Email:  guy@fishingwithlarry.com

Brad Staples

1-800-205-3474 ext. 3

Cell (503) 250-0558

Email:  brad@fishingwithlarry.com