Get ready for an epic adventure at the Lodge At Palisades Creek on the South Fork of the Snake River! Justin’s got an awesome story to tell—from chef to fly fishing guide to running the lodge. We find out how they won the Orvis Fly Fishing Lodge of the Year and how Orvis has supported them along the way.

We explore the river’s stunning five sections, each stretchin’ about 12 miles. We dive into the wild world of Yellowstone cutthroat and those rowdy rainbows, causing a stir in Idaho with bounties on their heads! We’ve got the lowdown on the Salmon fly, Goldenstone, and Caddis fly hatches—nature’s showtime!

Justin also shares valuable tips for all the DIY anglers out there and discusses the importance of river etiquette. Plus, a crazy story involving Dick Cheney’s bodyguards and a sketchy civilian that came so close to a river shootout!

Lodge At Palisades Creek with Justin Hays. Hit play below!

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(Read the Full Transcript at the bottom of this Blog Post)


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Show Notes with Justin Hays on Lodge At Palisades Creek

03:00 – Justin tells the story of how he transitioned from being a chef to being a fly fishing guide to managing a lodge.

06:50 – Justin talks about how partnering with Orvis has provided so much support to them in every aspect along the way. And he tells us how they won the Orvis Lodge of the Year Award.

lodge at palisades creek

08:20 – We talk about Yellowstone cutthroat decreasing in numbers and the rainbows increasing, almost being considered invasive. As a result, the Idaho Fishing Game made it legal to catch and kill rainbows, making it a controversial topic in Idaho. IFG even put a bounty on rainbows.

lodge at palisades creek

12:50 – We are coming to the Southfork in Fall for Euro Nymphing School with Pete Erickson.

20:20 – We had an episode about the Henry’s Fork Foundation with Brandon Hoffner at WFS 414.


23:15 – Trivia: Henry’s Fork was originally called the North Fork.

27:40 – They divide the river into 5 sections. Each section is roughly 12 miles long. The 1st section has 5 access points. The 2nd and 3rd sections are the Canyon sections – Justin talks about the amazing campsites in these sections and how amazing it is to fish there. The 4th section begins in the town of Ririe. Read about these sections in detail here.

35:45 – You can visit to rent a raft or a drift boat.

36:15 – Stonefly hatch lasts about 2 weeks. Justin talks about the Goldenstone hatch. In the summer they have a hopper season which ends in August. He also noted the Mutant Stonefly hatch – stoneflies that can’t fly. And then they have some Dunns as September progresses.

41:50 – “The trick to the Salmon fly thing is throwing a large dry fly on 2x underneath a bush or a tree and twitching out and try to mimic the real lifecycle of an adult Salmonfly…”, Justin explains in detail.

lodge at palisades creek

46:20 – Perdigons has been a game-changer for them in the last 2 years.

48:20 – Caddis fly hatch starts in mid-October.

48:55 – Pro tip for DIY anglers: “This river empties at 5 pm. You can have that river to yourself at 5 pm and it doesn’t get dark until 10 pm.”

52:30 – Justin is turning 55 this year. He started fishing in the Snake River when he was about 19 years old.

55:45 – We talk about river etiquette.

1:00:50 – Justin talks about how they won Orvis Fly Fishing Lodge of the Year.

lodge at palisades creek

1:06:55 – We noted that video by The New Fly Fisher highlighting the Lodge At Palisades Creek. Scroll down to watch the trailer. 👇🏻

1:07:20 – Their outfitting team mainly uses ClackaCraft Drift Boats. Justin talks about how they customized their boats and their great features.

lodge at palisades creek

1:11:30 – Justin recommends a 9-foot 6-wt rod.

1:13:13 – Justin noted a few restaurants and places around the area that has good food.

1:14:45 – Justin talks about Dick Cheney who’s also a passionate fly angler. He tells a crazy story of when Dick’s bodyguard suspected a civilian of being a threat and almost got shot.

lodge at palisades creek
Photo by Shutterstock
Dick Cheney fly fishing on the Snake River – 08 JUL 2001

The Lodge At Palisades Creek on Instagram @lodgeatpalisadescreekflyshop

Website at

lodge at palisades creek

Videos Noted in the Show

Related Podcast Episodes

Traveled #8 – Fly Fishing Henry’s Fork with Mike Lawson – Henry’s Fork Anglers, Hatch Chart

Traveled #2: Pete Erickson on the Euro Nymphing School – Team USA Gold, Eastern Idaho, South Fork Snake


Read the Full Podcast Transcript Below

Conclusion with Justin Hays on Lodge At Palisades Creek

In this episode, Justin shares his incredible journey from being a chef to becoming a fly fishing guide and managing a lodge. Partnering with Orvis has been instrumental in their success, providing unwavering support every step of the way. We touched on the shifting fish populations in the area, with Yellowstone cutthroat on the decline and rainbows increasing, leading to controversial fishing regulations in Idaho.

We also explored the river’s diverse sections, offering excellent fishing opportunities and stunning campsites. Valuable tips are given, from mastering the Salmon fly technique to utilizing Perdigons effectively. River etiquette is highlighted as a crucial aspect of angling, emphasizing the importance of responsible practices. Lastly, a thrilling tale unfolds involving Dick Cheney’s bodyguards, providing a glimpse into the unexpected adventures that can arise during fishing trips.