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10/13/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

10/13/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

Mid-October is a favorite time in Bozeman, MT for anglers and our Montana fly fishing guides. All of our Montana rivers are fishing well as well as the rivers and streams of Yellowstone National Park. Fall is in the air, the trees are lit up with color, and anglers will find plenty of solitude on our blue ribbon waters.

Great days on the water with anglers have kept us away from the computer and on the oars, but with our Montana fly fishing season starting to wind down we have found time for an in-depth fall fly fishing report and forecast. Our guides have been on the water daily with the Missouri River, Yellowstone River, and Madison River at the top of the list for productivity. Strong hatches of BWOs (#18-22), fall drakes (#10-14), and a variety of caddis, midges, and lingering terrestrials have made for some memorable days of dry fly fishing the past few weeks.

The fall streamer bite has also been improving daily. Anglers willing to commit have been rewarded. The morning streamer bite on the Missouri River has been particularly good with consistent action on baitfish imitations fished through 3-4ft of fast moving water.

Anglers planning a fall fly fishing trip will find the daily rhythm of streamer fishing or nymphing in the morning followed by afternoons of dry fly or dry-dropper fishing to be fulfilling, with diverse opportunities and good action. Fall brings anglers the full gamut of conditions and anglers should expect to change tactics throughout the day for the best success. Both wade fishing and float fishing can be productive with the low flows of fall and patience often rewards the angler that starts late and ends late, with the best bite from 11AM-6PM.

While there is still time to book an October fly fishing with our Montana fly fishing guides, guide availability is limited. We could not have asked for a better 2020 season with anglers from all over joining us for the best Montana fly fishing trips. Trip dates for 2021 are booking daily with limited availability already for prime dates on the Missouri River in May and June and in Bozeman, MT for July and August. It is never too early to plan and book your next trip. Anglers are encouraged to contact us today to learn more.

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

October is a favorite month on the Yellowstone River for our anglers and Yellowstone River fly fishing guides. Anglers can expect productive nymph and streamer fishing most mornings with quality dry fly fishing on calm afternoons. Cooler overcast days make for the strongest mayfly hatches with BWOs and drakes on the menu. Warmer days limit the mayfly activity but make for often excellent late season terrestrial fishing with hoppers and beetles still on the menu. Anglers willing to commit to streamer fishing will move some of the biggest brown trout of the year. Expect the bite only to improve as we move later into October and November.

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

No where better to fly fish in Montana in October than the Missouri River. Like the clock that keeps on ticking, the Mo has been nothing short of reliable with great nymphing on the upper river, solid streamer fishing on the whole river, and excellent dry fly and dry dropper fishing on the lower river for those willing to work at it. Fall mayflies, caddisflies, midges, and terrestrials are all still on the menu. Dry fly anglers should expect demanding conditions and spooky fish, but rewarding conditions on calm days. Streamer anglers are advised to fish the fastest water they can find and consider an intermediate line or light sink tip. Nymphers at the dam will find solid action on zebra midges (#18-22) and small BWO patterns fished deep in the morning and shallow in the afternoon. We were treated to an all-time day recently that included 6 hours of phenomenal dry fly fishing, 2 bear sightings, and a memorable morning streamer bite. No better place to fly fish than the Missouri River in October!

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

Great time of the year to be an angler on the Madison River. The whole river is fishing well from YNP to the headwaters of the Missouri River. Streamer fishing is the name of the game in the fall with both stripped, dead drifted, and dragged presentations proving productive. A great time for anglers to cross paths with some of the biggest trout of the year. Lake run fish can be found both in the braids and the Barnes Holes. Nymphing and streamer fishing are the best tactics for targeting these fish. Dry fly fishing has been relegated to slack water and slow moving drop offs, with good hatches of BWOs bringing fish to the surface daily. Still a few out there looking for the hopper…

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

Lakers in the Madison, blanket hatches on the Firehole, and Fall Drakes on the Lamar and Soda Butte. Anglers will find great fly fishing opportunities all across Yellowstone National Park right now. The perfect day:

  • First light swinging flies on the Madison River
  • Afternoon hatch on the Firehole River or Soda Butte Creek
  • Last light streamer bite on the Madison River

 

Looking forward for whats to come in November? Check out our full write-up on November fly fishing in Montana.

8/24/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

8/24/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

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!

8/4/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

8/4/20  Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

August is hopper season in Montana and it is shaping up to be another banner one in 2020. Our anglers and Montana fly fishing guides have enjoyed good to great hopper fishing on all of our Bozeman area rivers over the past weeks. The Yellowstone River has been fishing particularly well, in spite of the heat wave this past week. Further north, up on the Missouri River, our anglers and guides have reported challenging but rewarding dry fly fishing, with strong hatches of tricos daily and good terrestrial fishing in the afternoon with hoppers and ants.

Small stream fishing has also been excellent as of late with great hopper fishing on local freestone streams and spring creeks. August is a favorite month for wet-wading and fly fishing for our guides in Yellowstone National Park, as the Yellowstone River and tributaries offer great terrestrial fishing, cool water, and good flows through the end of the month and on into September. Dry fly nirvana most days.

Looking ahead we look for the hopper bite to only improve. As weather turns back to normal look for water temps to drop and fishing to be great throughout the day. In the meantime, better to start early and end early as things can get tough under the high afternoon sun after about 3-4PM.

August is shaping up to be a busy month for our Montana fly fishing guides with mostly full calendars through the end of the month, but there is still time to plan a Montana fly fishing trip for anglers wanting to get in on the hopper action. It is also shaping up to be an excellent fall fly fishing season with September and October being two of the favorite months for long-time returning anglers. Last year we had the hopper season that never ended with strong fishing through the 25th of October. Will 2020 be the same? We sure hope so! Contact us to book your next Montana fly fishing trip today.

 

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

The Yellowstone River has and will be the primary destination for our guides and anglers through the end of August. The hopper fishing has been solid, with good reports from anglers in Gardiner, MT all the way east of Livingston, MT and beyond. Hopper fishing rewards the committed on the Yellowstone, cut off your dropper, fish the hopper as best you can, and find your reward! Nymphing and streamer fishing has also been productive with the usual fare: stonefly nymphs, caddis nymphs, and big buggers. No better destination than the Yellowstone River for a Montana fly fishing trip during the summer months.

 

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

The initial push of hopper madness on the Madison River has faded and anglers will find consistently good fly fishing from first light until 3PM or so. Tougher under the high afternoon sun. Hoppers, ants, beetles, and caddis are all in play. Anglers looking for trophy trout will be best off fishing a hopper and fishing it well. It won’t happen every cast, but anglers willing to stick with it will get their shots. Nymphing has continued to remain productive with most anglers and guides opting to drift a streamer or stonefly nymph followed by something “tiny and shiny”. #16-22 lightning bugs and prince nymphs are always good bet.

 

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

August is a favorite month of anglers that enjoy fly fishing the Missouri River with less crowds and honest fishing. Good casts and drifts will result in caught fish. Dragged flies and less than stellar presentation will not. Anglers can expect plenty of water to themselves during the week and plenty of rising fish. Start early and fish hard. For the truly dedicated angler that enjoys the challenge of technical fly fishing there may be no better time to fish the river than August. Terrestrial fishing continues to improve daily with hoppers, ants, and beetles all putting trout in the net.

 

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

August is one of the best months for fly fishing in Yellowstone National Park. Rivers are clear, flows are stable, and the terrestrial fishing can be out of this world. The Lamar Valley is where our anglers and guides will be found with excellent dry fly fishing on the Soda Butte Creek, Lamar River, and Slough Creek. Start early, go for a hike, tie on a hopper, and go fish!

7/22/2020 Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

7/22/2020 Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

Summer is in full swing in Bozeman, MT and our anglers and guides are happy to report great conditions on our local rivers and streams. Mid-July is the best time of year if variety and dry fly fishing are at the top of your Montana fly fishing trip wish list. The Yellowstone River, Madison River, Missouri River, Gallatin River, Yellowstone National Park, and small tributaries are all fishing great, and anglers in Bozeman, MT have the option of fishing any of these great waters on a daily basis.

Early summer stonefly hatches are in the rearview at this point, but strong hatches of caddisflies, yellow sallies, and tricos have kept trout on the feed. Hoppers and ants are also on the menu now with 2020 shaping up to be another banner hopper season. Flows have started to level out on most of our area rivers, making both float and wade fishing great options in the weeks ahead. Now is the time to grab your rod, head to the river, and go fish!

Anglers still interested in Montana fly fishing trips are encouraged to contact us today. We still have good availability for trips based in both Bozeman, MT and on the Missouri River in Craig, MT for August, September, and October. Due to some coronavirus related cancellations, several of our top guides have last minute availability. Our outfitter handles all trip bookings personally and is looking forward to planning your next Montana fly fishing adventure.

 

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

The Yellowstone River has been the main event for our anglers and guides as of late. The Yellowstone is in as good of shape as anglers could ask for with great dry fly fishing, nymphing, and streamer fishing all on the table. Sunny days have made for slower action in the late-afternoon but the bite has been solid most days until 4PM. Caddisflies and stoneflies are the two main items on the menu, with the afternoon hopper bite improving daily. Our Yellowstone river fly fishing guides have been fishing the entire length of the river, from Gardiner down through Big Timber and beyond, with solid fishing had on all reaches.

 

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

Rock solid on the Madison River. Dry fly fishing has been consistently great with caddisflies, yellow sallies, stoneflies, and terrestrials all on the menu. We have found big fish looking up all along the Upper Madison. Nymphing has been steady as well as drifting streamers. A note for anglers: The Lower Madison River is under permanent hoot owl restrictions and shuttle companies in Ennis, MT are operating at restricted capacity. Get off the lower river early and call ahead to make sure you can get a shuttle.

 

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

Dry fly mania in Craig, MT. Caddisflies, PMDs, tricos, and terrestrials all have the mighty Missouri River trout looking up. Our guides are reporting good fishing with anglers most days, with some tough afternoons on the sunniest and hottest of days. Nymphing has also remained productive along the whole river. Short, deep, and everywhere in between can catch fish on the Missouri River this time of year. Set your depth and go find it.

 

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

The Yellowstone River and tributaries are fishing great, with anglers finding uncrowded waters daily. Soda Butte Creek, Slough Creek, the Lamar River, and the Yellowstone River are the best bets for great dry fly fishing. The cutthroat bite has been excellent with #10-16 attractor dry flies being the main fare. Look for the hopper bite to really kick off in the coming weeks.

6/1/2020 Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

6/1/2020 Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report

Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

June is the start of the summer fly fishing season in Bozeman, MT. Our anglers and Montana fly fishing guides are looking forward to a great summer filled with long days spent chasing trout across the Big Sky State. As of today, 6/1/20, Montana is officially open to travelers and we are excited to welcome back anglers from around the country to take part in the 2020 Montana fly fishing season.

The fly fishing as of late has been excellent on the Missouri River. Spring run-off is in full swing on the rivers near Bozeman, MT, but the Missouri River tailwater in Craig, MT has continued to give it up on a daily basis for our anglers and guides. Dry fly fishing has been limited, but the nymphing has produced extremely high catch rates from Holter Dam all the way town river to Cascade, MT. We are looking forward to hatches of Pale Morning Dun mayflies (PMDs) and summer caddisflies to kick-off in the coming week and be in full swing by the 12th of the month.

Closer to Bozeman, MT options for anglers are limited to fly fishing on the Lower Madison River, area stillwaters, and the Paradise Valley Spring Creeks. These are all “run-off friendly” options and make for a fun day of fly fishing. Yellowstone National Park is also open as of today for both drive-thru traffic and fly fishing for anglers in Montana. Flows are still high on the Firehole River, Gibbon River, and Madison River, but we are optimistic that flows will stabilize by next week and open the door for solid wade-fishing through the end of the month. Good to be getting back to normal.

We are booking Montana fly fishing trips for 2020 and 2021. We still have dates available through the end of June on the Missouri River as well as prime salmonfly hatch dates on the rivers near Bozeman. Contact us today to talk fishing and book your next trip.

 

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

The Missouri River is and will be the best option for a Montana fly fishing trip through the 25th of June. The fly fishing has been excellent with great nymphing along the entire tailwater reach near Craig, MT. Sowbugs, mayflies, caddisflies, and annelids (WORMS) are all on the menu subsurface. Hatches have been thin as of late, making for less than stellar dry fly fishing, but we expect this to pick up in the coming week(s) as early summer hatches of PMDs and caddisflies kick-off. Anglers willing to work for it have been rewarded with solid attractor dry fly fishing in the afternoons as well as success with dry-dropper rigs. See above photo for what happens when you are willing to fish the dry fly on the Missouri River and ‘let it ride’.

 

Paradise Valley Spring Creek Fly Fishing Report

Good to great on a daily basis still on the Paradise Valley Spring Creeks. Late-May and early-June are typically quiet on the spring creeks as we are between hatches, making it a great time of year to explore new runs and riffles and sight-nymph to solitary trout. Hatches have been thin but the subsurface fly fishing has been excellent with #18-22 PTs, zebra midges, and sows accounting for the majority of takes. Patience and precision will be rewarded. Great availability on DePuy, Armstrong, and Nelson Spring Creeks through the 20thof June.

 

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

The annual spring run-off has arrived to southwest Montana and the Upper Madison River is done for the time being. Stubborn anglers will still find success with large #2-4 stonefly nymphs and streamers, but anglers will find less than ideal conditions now through likely the 10th of June. Afterwards expect flows to drop and conditions to improve. The Lower Madison River is still a good option for local anglers in Bozeman, MT, but flows are also high and water clarity less than ideal. Giant nymphs, crayfish patterns, and streamers will also be your best bet.

 

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

25000+ CFS and rising. Leave her alone for the time being. When will flows drop and the salmonflies pop on the Yellowstone River in 2020? June 27th. Or earlier but maybe also later.

 

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

Yellowstone is open and the 2020 fly fishing season is underway! As of today the Montana entrances have re-opened. Flows are still high on the majority of rivers in the park, but we are optimistic that conditions will quickly improve on the Firehole, Madison, and Gibbon Rivers. These rivers offer the best dry fly fishing in early June for anglers in Big Sky and Bozeman, MT. Solid hatches of PMDs and a variety of caddisflies make for exciting sight fishing opportunities in a truly scenic setting.

 

Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report 10/28/19

Bozeman, MT Fly Fishing Report 10/28/19

Bozeman Fly Fishing Overview

It is a winter wonderland in Bozeman, Montana today. What happened to fall? Came and went quicker than we could have ever believed. As for the fly fishing? Cold days make for often tough conditions for anglers but great for our trout. Our fly fishing guides have been on the water daily for the last week and have seen it on all on the rivers and streams near Bozeman: snow, sun, good dry fly fishing, great nymphing, and even a hopper eating trout or twelve.

Anglers planning fly fishing trips to Montana in late October should be prepared for whatever mother nature has in store. Anglers should also expect strong hatches, opportunities to catch some of the largest trout of the year, and solitude on the water.

Looking ahead, anglers looking forward to Bozeman fly fishing trips will find the best conditions and success on the Yellowstone River, Madison River, and the Paradise Valley Spring Creeks. Anglers booking Missouri River fly fishing trips will enjoy some great dry fly fishing and streamer fishing on the Missouri River. Probably no better place for November fly fishing trips than the Missouri River.

Hatches will remain strong through the first half of the month. BWOs and midges will be the name of the game. Winter weather will come and go and overcast calmer days will make for the best fly fishing conditions. But you can’t control the weather, so you’ll just have to go to know!

We will continue to update our Bozeman fly fishing reports through the end of November. Then we will turn our sights to 2020.

Still taking trip bookings for November 2019 Montana fly fishing trips with the Montana Angling Company and our fly fishing guides. Wide open calendars for most of our guides and still some great fly fishing to be had. See you on the water.

Yellowstone River Fly Fishing Report

In spite of winter weather, the fly fishing has been excellent on the Yellowstone River this fall. Our anglers and guides have enjoyed great fly fishing over the last week from Emigrant all the way down stream to Columbus. The brown trout featured in the picture is a great Yellowstone brown trout caught by one of our anglers on October 25th. It devoured a hopper. One of many from what will likely be the last day of good hopper fishing for 2019. It snowed 6 inches the following night.

BWO and midge fishing has been excellent with the colder weather. Nymphing in the morning and dry dropper fishing in the afternoon has been productive. Rubber legs, pheasant tails, a variety of Parachute dries, and a few zebra midges is probably all you need right now. Streamer fishing has been fair in the mornings on smaller buggers.

Missouri River Fly Fishing Report

Late October is a special time on the Missouri River. Strong hatches of BWOs, low angling pressure, and good streamer fishing make for memorable days on the water. Hard to imagine a better place to be an angler in the late fall than the mighty Missouri River.

Dry fly fishing has been and will remain excellent through the first half of November. BWOs are the main attraction with good hatches daily and pods of rising trout eager to eat a well presented fly. Nymphing on the upper river has been good but not as good as previous years. Streamer fishing has been consistently good. We’ll take it.

Our fly fishing guides consider the Missouri River to be the best option for anglers planning a late fall Montana fly fishing trip. The lower elevation of the surrounding area compared to our home base in Bozeman makes for reliably better weather and fly fishing conditions. The Missouri River is also a tailwater, which means less water temperature variation, more consistent hatches, and more dynamic fishing opportunities as the mercury plummets on our freestone rivers.

Madison River Fly Fishing Report

Conditions in the Madison River valley can best be described as rugged in the late fall. Days are often cold and windy. This can translate into tough fly fishing conditions for anglers. The nice days are great. Nymphing and streamer fishing can be excellent, with some good dry fly fishing on calmer edges and pools with BWOs. But from here on out we would recommend to not “forget the forecast” but rather know the forecast and head to another Bozeman area river or to the Missouri River if weather conditions are tough on the Madison River.

Paradise Valley Spring Creek Fly Fishing Report

Challenging but rewarding. Fall on the spring creeks can be described as nothing short of technical, but good hatches of midges and BWOs have made for high-quality sight fishing on a daily basis. We were treated to 5 hours of non-stop dry fly fishing just yesterday. BWOs were size 16-20 but the fish preferred the 20-22 size flies. Good nymphing in the morning with midges and BWO nymphs. Best wade fishing option close to Bozeman from now through the early spring.

Yellowstone National Park Fly Fishing Report

Just about closed for the season. November 3rd is the last day to fish in Yellowstone National Park. Still time to catch the fish of the year on the Madison River.

General Late-Season Fly Fishing Note

Our guides’ advice:  Do not under estimate the elements and be prepared for the north wind to kick up anytime. Be cautious rowing and wading and check boats ramps for ice before putting in. Stay warm and stay safe in the colder weather.