June 2018 Montana Fly Fishing Overview
The Summer fly fishing season is almost here and our Bozeman, Montana fly fishing guides are ready for it. June means longer days, great hatches, consistent fishing, flip-flop weather, and is one of our anglers favorite times for a Montana fly fishing trip. June 2018 is shaping up to be a great kick-off to our summer season. Spring was generous to us this year with mild weather and some of the better fly fishing in recent history for March, April, and May. June looks to continue this trend.
Our freestone rivers will remain high, off-color, and largely unfishable through the month of June. We’ve got plenty of snow still in the mountains and we’re thinking the Yellowstone River, Boulder River, Gallatin River, and Stillwater river will run high through mid-late July. Why are we so optimistic about June then? Our answer: the fly fishing on the Missouri River, Madison River, and Spring Creeks has and will be that good. The same high flows that make for tough fishing on our freestone river make for phenomenal fishing on our tailwater rivers. High water means lots of food for our trout and they will be on the feed in a big way.
The Missouri River has been treating our guides and anglers well since mid-March and the good times will roll on through June. Higher than normal flows has meant limited dryfly opportunities but the nymphing has been as good as it gets. Flows have crossed 15000 CFS and will likely go up through mid-June which means even more food for our Missouri River trout. Dryfly fishing will continue to be tough but the nymphing will only improve as water temps come up. While sowbugs and scuds were king this spring, look for the menu to expand to include worms, crayfish, caddis, and PMD nymph in June. There will be more than one way to get it done. Go deep and fish the traditional lanes, shorten up and fish the banks, or sneak around the lower river if you’ve got it down. It is hard to learn the Missouri River at high water. The fish get big and go on the feed, but you’ve still got to know where they are. Consider hiring a guide if you start feeling lost. Or if you just want a great Missouri River fly fishing experience. Flows will more than likely start to drop by the end of the month. Hard to say wether the dryfly bite will pickup. Need flows below 9000 CFS for it to get good. But we’re just fine with the great nymphing until then.
The long-lived Hebgen Dam construction project is done and the Madison River has and will be in full form in 2018. We had great fishing all spring. Float and wade fishing were both great options. Flows have and will come up. Lots of snow in the surrounding ranges still. Float fishing and wade fishing will remain great but anglers need to exercise caution as flows continue to come up. We expect streamer fishing and nymphing will remain great through the end of June. When the river comes up and clarity becomes less than clear, the big fish go on the feed. Stonefly nymphs, sculpins, worms, crayfish, and large attractor nymphs will all work well. We’ll see the first of the Salmonflies on June 23rd, 2:17pm. Be there. But in actuality it is hard to predict when exactly they will hatch, but we expect to see the big bugs out between June 19th and 25th. How long will they stick around? Anyone’s guess. All we know is our Montana fly fishing guides will be on the water when they show up, ready to take advantage of some of the best dryfly fishing of the year. Flows will be higher than average through the end of the month, water temps cooler, water dirtier, but the Salmonfly hatch will happen and you will want to be there.
We’ve had nothing but great fly fishing on our Montana Spring Creeks all spring. Most of our time has been spent on DePuy’s Spring Creek and our anglers have had great hatches and fishing. June will be more of the same. With the Yellowstone River running high, fish numbers in the spring creeks will remain great and it will make for a PMD season to remember. Look for the hatch to start by the end of the first week, peak around June 20 and continue well into July. But rod availability is already limited. Consider booking your spring creek fly fishing trip for June today if you haven’t already.
The Yellowstone River and other freestone rivers near Bozeman, Montana will remain unfishable through the month of June. And probably well into July. This means we will miss the salmonfly hatch this year, probably golden stones too. The patient angler that waits until flows drop and the river turns green will be rewarded with what will be a great late-summer season. High flows means lots of cold water through the summer and lots of fish on the feed. We’re predicting an awesome hopper season that will extend into late September. Stay tuned for updates.
June is the start of primetime for our anglers and Montana fly fishing guides. Guided fly fishing trips going out daily and great fishing on our Spring Creeks, the Missouri River, and Madison River. June 2018 will be one you don’t want to miss out on.