November Fly Fishing in Montana
By November in Montana fall is on its way out, winter is on its way in, and anglers will find the last chance for great fly fishing in Montana. Winter fly fishing in Montana can be fun and productive, but the ability to float, wade, and fly fish on our blue ribbon rivers on a consistent basis is limited beyond the month of November. Anglers fly fishing in Montana in November should be ready for anything, but can count on generally favorable conditions both in Bozeman, MT and on the Missouri River in Craig, MT.
When conditions are right for fly fishing in November, anglers will be treated to some truly great fishing in total solitude. The crowds from summer are long gone, hunters are up in the hills chasing elk, pressure is minimal, and the fly fishing can be outstanding. Nymphing and streamer fishing will be the most productive tactics, but strong hatches of mayflies can make for great dry fly fishing on certain days. Our Montana fly fishing guides have generally great availability through the month of November and all trip bookings are recommended to plan ahead, but wait to book no more than a week out once we have a feel for the weather.
We have many fond memories of fall days in November spent fly fishing on the rivers of Montana. When conditions permit, it can be truly special.
- Solitude and limited angling pressure on all of our rivers.
- Good hatches of Blue Winged Olive (BWO) mayflies through the middle of the month and midges later in the month make for great late-season dry fly fishing on the Missouri River.
- Nymphing and streamer fishing can be outstanding on the Yellowstone River and other freestone rivers near Bozeman, MT
What to Expect in November
Anglers should expect to encounter any and all conditions fly fishing in Montana in November. Be prepared for the cold and snow. Be prepared for sunny and warm. Be prepared for windy and rainy. We see it all in November. Wind is the major factor that limits fly fishing productivity. Often fly fishing is best on cold and snowy days. As long as the wind is calm. In November we tell all anglers you just have to go to know. When conditions are right anglers can expect great fly fishing.
Anglers should expect to start and end their fly fishing trips late in November. Our Montana fly fishing guides generally meet anglers between 9AM and 10AM in November and often later. The fly fishing in November is best from 12PM until dark. Cold mornings generally mean tough fishing. Hatches of BWOs and midges are limited to the afternoon. Sleep in and stay out late.
Anglers fly fishing the Missouri River should expect good fly fishing on the tailwater section near Craig, MT. This stretch offers the best late-season dry fly fishing in the state. Nymphing and streamer fishing will also be productive from the Dam to Cascade.
Where to Fly Fish in November
We recommend anglers fly fishing in Montana in November focus their efforts wherever angling conditions are the most favorable. By that we mean wherever the wind is the calmest. Windy in Bozeman? Head to the Missouri River. Windy on the Missouri River? Head to Bozeman and fish the Yellowstone or Madison River. Windy everywhere? It is never windy everywhere and experience will pay off under these circumstances.
November Fly Fishing Tactics
Nymphing and streamer fishing techniques will be the most productive for anglers fly fishing in November. Hatches are generally inconsistent and often thin. Dry fly fishing can be productive at times, when strong hatches of BWOs and midges bring trout to the surface, but often inconsistent in November. On the Missouri River anglers can expect the best chance for quality dry fly fishing. Nymphing will be best with sowbug and scuds #12-16 on our tailwater rivers and with stoneflies #6-10)and attractor nymphs #12-16 on our freestone rivers. Streamer anglers should mix up patterns and presentation depending on conditions, but generally smaller, flashier streamers produce in November.
November Fly Fishing Trips
November fly fishing trips with the Montana Angling Company are a good choice for anglers that value solitude on the water above all else or have flexibility for dates. We generally do not recommend planning a Montana fly fishing trip in November for a first trip, for beginner anglers, or for anglers that are not willing to fly fish in tough conditions. However anglers that are up for often challenging conditions will be rewarded with great fly fishing for wild trout on our Montana Rivers. Float fishing trips on the Missouri River, Yellowstone River, and Madison River will be the best options as well as wade fishing on the Paradise Valley Spring Creeks.