Fishing Reports

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Madison River - Upper - April 15th, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Windy and snow
  • 35 ° F 
  • Fishing: Good
Reminder: Upper Madison from outlet of Quake Lake to MacAttee Bridge and again from Ennis boat ramp downstream to Ennis Lake are CLOSED to all fishing until the General Fishing Season opens May 18th!!

The open river parts from MacAtte down to Ennis ramp have been fishing well.  Windy days are definitely tougher.  So are the super bright sunny days.  However, less wind, clouds, all make for good days.  Blue wing olives reign for hatches right now.  However, there are skwala stoneflies present in the Upper Maddy and they can definitely have the fishes attention.   While moving, run heavily weighted stonefly nymphs coupled with smaller beadheads or swing your favorite streamer pattern and see what grabs.  Find the good runs, post up, and keep changing flies, weight till fish are putting a bend in the rods.

Olive Pat's rubberlegs
Yuk Bug (6-8)
RBGB (6-8)
Theo's Terminator (6-8)
San Juan (8-10) pink, red, wine, natural
Flashback PT (12-18)
BH Prince (12-18)
3Dollar Crystal Dip (14-18) red, olive, brown
Lightning Bug (14-18) pearl, pink, gold
Copper John (14-18) copper, red, black

 
Madison River - Lower - April 15th, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Windy and snow
  • 35 ° F 
  • Fishing: Good
Winter Returns!  Today looks to be fairly brutal out there to be honest.  Wind, rain and snow squalls.  It's really that wind that makes it so damn unpleasant.....  OK, gonna be cold tonight and tomorrow as well. But if you are really going to head out, the fishing really hasn't changed all that much.  Rainbows are pretty much in their  spawning locations.  I'm sure they are stacked up under the dam by Ennis lake..... Plenty of good sized browns still lurking in all the buckets, runs, and weedbed edges however.  And their looking for a meal!  Bugs- midges for sure, baetis too.  Haven't heard much about whether anything bigger like March Browns might be starting or not.  Things aren't too terribly different than they have been as far as techniques.  Nnymphing in all the likely buckets and runs with 3-5 feet fly to Indy and enough weight to get down and tick along is the ticket.   As warm as it's been, fish have been grabby, but with this cold coming back in,  that may change for a few days..

Call the fly shop for info and patterns 406-333-4401
 
Armstrong's, DePuy's and Nelson's Spring Creek - April 15th, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Rain and/or snow
  • 35 ° F 
  • Fishing: Great
Today marks the start of Spring rates on the spring creeks.  $75/angler now until June 14th.

Fishing continues to be very good on the creeks this spring.  Rainbow spawn is full on right now so lots and lots of fish are in the creeks.  Not just bows, but browns and cutts too.  Given the right weather situations, there are good hatches coming off on the creeks as well making for some fun fishing situations.  Midges will be present here/there throughout parts of the day. Spring Baetis are a good bet as well.  These BWO's prefer the low light conditions of cloudy/stormy days vs. bright sunshine.  Finding an afternoon with low light, clouds, light or variable wind can bring on a very good hatch and fish will definitely be looking up. 

Do consider the Redds in the creeks.  You know, the places the rainbows are making the next generation of themselves that we would like to see get big?  There's really no need to fish to the fish that are actively spawning or are about to.  There are plenty of other trout in the spring creeks that are a)done spawning and are below the redds feeding b)other species :browns and cutthroat that aren't spawning at this time.  It's very helpful to not stress the fish that are actively procreating as well as not walking all over their spawning grounds.  Simple- leave them be.  Your courtesy and thoughtfulness will go a long ways to making more trout!
 
Short leash nymphing with a non-beaded yet weighted PT pattern like the Sawyer PT with it's copper wrapped body tied in tandem with either midge pupa or very small baetis softhackle patterns has been very effective at blind nymphing up fish.  Sight fishing to specifically feeding fish may require changing the flies around a bit until that fish takes. Yet another effective "search and grab" means is to work small to medium sized streamers in olive, black, or sometimes white coloration through likely looking haunts.  You may be well rewarded....

Flies to fish:
Sawyer PT 16-20
Tung Zebra Midge, black or olive 18-20
Natural Scud 18
Soft Hackle Scud 18
Split back BWO Nymph 18-20
MO softhackle baetis18-20
Micro May olive, brown 18-20
Flossy san juan 14

Black, olive buggers
JJ Special
Sculpzilla

Call anytime 406-333-4401
 
Yellowstone River - April 15th, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Icy, rain or snow
  • 35 ° F 
  • Fishing: Good
Someone brought back Winter!  Warm sunny days replaced once again with cool, no cold and downright wintry like days starting today and lasting for the next couple days.  Snow is possible even down in the valley.  With this, the river is going to start dropping instead of rising.  Good.  Also, with the clouds, chances are baetis will be showing up. So, what to do and where:  Depth and speed are still very important.  Middle deep (2-4feet) as well as the super deep are holding fish now.  And you can a little more speed, but still looking for that true "off speed" not direct fast current to target the trout.   Nymphing is always the most consistent.  Start deep in the morning hours and work progressively shallower into the afternoon as fish move up.  7-9 feet from first fly to Indy then moving that bobber down to 3-5 feet by afternoon.  How bout streamers then?  Some days are good even in the bright conditions.  You just have to roll with your choices of what to huck.  Black, Olive, White are traditional--- and they still work!

Pay heed to the fact that the river is basically closed off to floating from Mayor's to 89 right now with the KPRK bridge work.  You DO NOT want to try floating through the bridges now!  FWP/State/TU/Anglers/Shops etc all working on an alternate so that we can fish from just below the bridges downstream and we will keep folks informed of how that progresses.


Feel free to stop by the shop anytime or give a call 406-333-4401 for any other information. 



 
Madison River - Upper - April 2nd, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Mostly sunny
  • 64 ° F 
  • Fishing: Good
Reminder: Upper Madison from outlet of Quake Lake to MacAttee Bridge and again from Ennis boat ramp downstream to Ennis Lake are CLOSED to all fishing until the General Fishing Season opens May 18th!!

Lots of good size bows are on the move up river.  It's the annual spring spawn.  Also the primary reason that the upper, upper is closed.  Let them spawn!  So, around Hebgen dam downstream to Quake lake is still fishing very good.  Nymphing is king up there and fish will eat a well presented nymph rig all day long.  Smallish double nymph rigs or egg and a nymph seem to be the rig du jour.  Down below in the waters from Storey Ditch to Ennis (Ennis boat ramp still closed to take out at 8-mile or Burnt Tree) fishing is quite good too.  While moving, run heavily weighted stonefly nymphs coupled with smaller beadheads or swing your favorite streamer pattern and see what grabs.  For the next several weeks, the upper will see solid fishing.

Flies to Try:
Pat's Rubber Leg Stone (6-10) brown, brown/black, olive
Yuk Bug (6-8)
RBGB (6-8)
Theo's Terminator (6-8)
San Juan (8-10) pink, red, wine, natural
Flashback PT (12-18)
BH Prince (12-18)
3Dollar Crystal Dip (14-18) red, olive, brown
Lightning Bug (14-18) pearl, pink, gold
Copper John (14-18) copper, red, black

 
Madison River - Lower - April 2nd, 2013
  • Recorded:
  • Sunny
  • 62 ° F 
  • Fishing: Good
Warm and Sunny!  And more of the same coming at least for another couple days.  Sure feels good after winter!  Is it going to last?  Heck no.  Bridger Bowl closes Sunday- it's sure to start snowing again in earnest as soon as it does!

Lots of folks walk/wade fishing.  Especially up Beartrap Canyon.  And why the heck not?  It's beautiful out there!  Fishing has been good too.  Not bad for the dudes & dudettes floating the river either.  Fish are still pretty much concentrated in the "buckets" and deeper runs so floating from depth to depth and posting up has been a good method.  Rainbows are moving and getting to spawning locations.  I'm sure they are stacked up under the dam by Ennis lake..... Bugs- midges for sure, baetis too.  Haven't heard much about whether anything bigger like March Browns might be starting or not.  It's  a little bit away for that. 

Things aren't too terribly different than they have been as far as techniques.  Yes, there is some dry fly activity to be found.  Hope for the days with clouds and not much "W" for midging fish on top as well as some blue wing olive activity in the afternoons.  Otherwise, nymphing in all the likely buckets and runs with 5-7 feet fly to Indy and enough weight to get down and tick along is the ticket.  You can try slow swinging streamers and other bugs through the buckets as well as along weedline edges to see if someone will grab.  Water temps are coming up.  So are the flows just a bit.  As warm as it's been, that may become even more evident..

Call the fly shop for info and patterns 406-333-4401