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Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

The sun is out and hoppers are flying in Bozeman, MT! 2020 continues to impress for anglers fly fishing with our guides in Montana as dry fly fishing with terrestrials has been rock solid on our rivers close to Bozeman, MT as well as the Missouri River. The Yellowstone River and Madison River have been the best options for anglers looking to toss hoppers for wild trout this August and anglers have seen solid catch rates in spite of the usual ebb and flow of hopper fishing. Some days have been better than others, but all good fly fishing.

There is no need to make things more complicated than fishing a dry fly or dry-dropper rig all day right now in Bozeman, MT. Hoppers, stoneflies, and ants #6-14 will all catch fish. This is a great time of year for exploring the full width of our rivers. Trout will rise anywhere you can find 1.5-6ft of moving water. Right now that is just about everywhere.

August is also always a favorite month for wade fishing. Park the boat, go for a walk and you’ll often be surprised by what you find down the side channels. Smaller rivers also offer great public access and often the opportunity to fish miles and miles of low-pressure waters. Often times anglers are surprised to find bigger than your average trout in smaller than your average streams.

Warm summer days have pushed water temps up, but conditions are holding well on most higher elevation rivers and streams. Anglers starting early have been rewarded with the best fly fishing, but the bite has held out through the late afternoon and evening.

Looking ahead our Montana fly fishing guides are fortunate to be staying busy through the late summer and early fall. In spite of uncertainty, anglers have gone above and beyond in 2020 and we couldn’t be more thankful. For anglers planning Montana fly fishing trips in September and October, we do still have availability, but prime dates are just about fully booked. We look forward to seeing you on the water soon!

 

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

Hopper-mania on the Yellowstone River. The bite has been rock solid through all of the different weather this August. #6-16 flies have all had there moment with #10-12 foam hoppers, fished well, remaining the trout and guide favorite. Droppers have also had their moment and will continue to looking ahead. #14-18 PTs and princes will be the best bet. Our anglers and guides have had great fishing on the Yellowstone River from Gardiner to Big Timber and beyond. Looking ahead we expect more of the same in the coming weeks.

 

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

Good to great on the Madison River. The ebbs and flows of the hopper fishing on the Madison River are real, but anglers willing to commit will be rewarded. Changing color, size, and profile can help, but when the trout are on it largely doesn’t matter what is on the end of your line. Getting a good drift and letting it ride go a long way. Late August is always a great time to fish a #14-18 ant in tandem with a hopper. Often the biggest fish in the river will take it over the #6 t-bone steak hopper. Nymphing and dead-drifting streamers has and will continue to be a productive back up plan through the end of August and into late-September. #2-12 sclupins followed by a #18-22 lightning bug is a good start.

 

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

Plenty of open water and great fly fishing on Montana’s Missouri River in August. The weeds are real, but not problematic for anglers willing to commit to dry fly fishing. Tricos in the AM with ants and hoppers in the PM have made for all day action. Or at least shots. Fish the whole river from Holter Dam down through the canyon and beyond. Big browns love hoppers on the ‘Mo.

 

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

Cold water is plentiful in Yellowstone National Park in August and is the best place for wade fishing near Bozeman, MT. The tributaries of the Yellowstone River in the Northeast corner are the best starting points, with great terrestrial fishing on the Soda Butte Creek, Slough Creek, and the Lamar River. Native cutthroat trout have a special place in their heart for a well presented #12-18 hopper, ant, or beetle. Hike for solitude and don’t forget your bear spray!