Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Though runoff is now in full swing, we're still managing to find enough fishable water to keep us busy. Flows on the lower Madison have been up and down but as of Sunday, they have remained stable and the river is quite fishable with a manageable flow and good clarity. Though action was spotty today, yesterday went well with Soft Hackle Hare's Ears, SJ Worms and a variety of sculpin and crayfish patterns producing the most consistent results. Spent some time on Nelson's Spring creek a few days back - an midday PMD hatch was the driving force there and in spite of the bright sun, we managed to fool a number of nice fish on PMD Sparkle Duns or a Quigley's Cripple with an RS2 as a dropper. As we speak, the creek is full of fish. Later this week we'll be off the Missouri for a few days - as long as flows remain consistent, fishing should be good.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Spring is here

After a long dose of snow, rain and all the lasting effects of winter, spring has finally arrived and with the warm weather of the past few days the rivers are on the rise. The Yellowstone is now officially blown out and will likely stay unfishable until early to mid July. As we speak, the Madison is still in good shape and fishing well though that may be short lived unless cooler weather arrives to slow the snow melt. If in fact the Madison turns muddy as well, we'll be looking to spring creeks, the Missouri and some lakes and ponds in the weeks ahead - all great options in theiur own right.
The Mother's Day caddis hatch was phenomenal this year providing some of the best surface activity I've found with the hatch in the past few seasons. Fished a local but private spring creek today that feeds the East Gallatin. Wondering if some fish had moved into the creek to escape the runoff conditions in the larger river, we figured a black bugger thrown right into the confluence of the two might be a good idea. A few minutes later, 25.5" brown lay in the bottom of the net - the biggest I've managed to find in Montana thus far. Now we're looking for the 26 incher!

Thursday, May 7, 2009


As of this past weekend, the caddis have started on the Yellowstone - it's no longer a rumor. And while weather conditions continue to be spotty, the benefit of the cooler weather has been a fishable river. Conditions are optimal right now and the typical day has been nymphing in the mornings with Girdle Bugs and Sparkle Pupa and dry fly fishing in the afternoons with March Browns and/or caddis. Without any question, the #14 Royal Trude has been our best bet with a CDC Caddis Emerger or Iris Caddis in tow. As of now, it seems that most caddis activity is occuring below and around Livingston. Reports have been good from the Madison and we should see some caddis over there soon as well.