With winter upon us here in Montana, we may not be on the river everyday but we still fish when the conditions allow. As I have gotten older I choose more wisely the days I chase after trout. The thermometer has to be at least around 30 degrees for one. Fishing during the winter can be rewarding on many different levels. As fly fishing is a popular sport during the summer here in Montana, you may find yourself the only person on the river. Standing in the river surrounded by snow covered mountains is not only very peaceful but relaxing as well.
An overview of the many rivers Trout Wranglers offer guiding trips for. From the Missouri to the Gallatin, from the Madison to the Yellowstone and many rivers in-between. Montana is a fascinating area, with so many sights and sounds. If you're able to spend a few days on the river, we'll look to hit some new water so you can experience great fishing and beautiful Montana country.
A massive mayfly hatch on the Mississippi River in the La Crosse, Wisconsin area July 20, 2014, was described as a insect infestation of "biblical proportions" so intense that it made driving in the region difficult and even dangerous. Poor visibility and slippery roads (due to mayflies) were blamed for a three-vehicle accident on the Hwy. 63 bridge linking Red Wing and Hager City, Wisconsin, that left one person hospitalized.
On many of our bigger western rivers fishing from a drift boat is advantageous for many reasons. Many people including myself enjoy wading. Nothing like feeling the water around you, the temperature, the sound, seeing fish rising around you. There is something indescribable about being in the river. It's a great day when you've been able to cover a piece of water completely and giving yourself every opportunity to catch fish. But many of our major rivers are better suited for fishing from a drift boat. There are many advantages to using a drift boat to fish.
It's been a long cold and snowy winter here in Montana. Spring is just around the corner and the month of May is one of my favorite months of the year in Montana. One of the biggest and most impressive hatches that happens every year in the month of May is the "Mother's day" caddis hatch. The specific name of these caddis are American Grannoms from the Brachycentridae family of the caddis fly. These caddis are well known for hatching by the billions at a time. This "phenomenal" hatch happens on both the Madison and Yellowstone rivers in our area.
My personal favorite river to fish in the entire state is located in a town of 32 year round residents, has three fly shops, two watering holes and one restaurant. It boasts the second largest population of trout in any river in the state (6k+ per mile) with the average size of trout being 16-17 inches with 20-inch trout not uncommon.
One of the worst feelings you can experience fishing in the winter time is to slide off the bank into the water and after 10 minutes of fishing your feet feel like a block of frozen ice. Your realize that your waders leak. There aren't any blatant holes but you can feel your soppy sock sloshing around. This usually ends my day. What can you do to find and repair these pesky pinholes? I am going to tell you right here.
Winter time fly fishing in Montana is great way to spend some quality time in the outdoors. The serene and peaceful setting of standing in a river casting your flies waiting for a hungry trout to come tight on the end of your line can be inviting. I have compiled a list of five tips to help you make the most of your time on the river during the winter.
Updated: 2015 Snowpack Information - With the beginning of winter we complete another fishing season and it’s time to look forward to the annual snowpack buildup. The relationship between snowpack and river runoff is important. The quantity of water will be in direct proportion to the level of health for our rivers and the ecosystem that it supports. Naturally, the fishing quality is in direct proportion to the level of health of our river ecosystem. For those of you interested in understanding one fishing quality measurement tool, snowpack, then please read on to gain insight and learn a little more on what you might expect for the upcoming fishing season.