Located here in Southwestern Montana we have many blue ribbon rivers and streams to choose to fly fish. Bozeman, Montana is centrally located between the Yellowstone, Madison and Gallatin Rivers to name a few. These famous rivers are well known for their high trout population and world class fly fishing. When people ask whether they should get a guide for a Montana fly fishing float trip or wade trip we need to dig deeper to see what would work best for each individual or group.
There are many pro’s and con’s on whether to book a fly fishing float trip or a wade trip. When deciding on which trip best suits you, keep a few things in mind. What time of year are you booking for? What kind of physical shape are you in? Is your fly fishing partner wanting the same type of experience? What are the most important aspects of the trip for you?
Pros of a float trip:
Cons of a float trip:
Pros of a wade trip:
Cons of a wade trip:
In my 25 years of guiding fly fishermen in Montana, the ratio of wade trips vs. float trips is 90% float trips and 10% wade trips a season. Many of our clientele find it easier to fly fish from a boat. Clients new to fly fishing only need to be able to make a short cast and let the guide put them in proper position, older clients find it safer to fish from a boat and not worry about negotiating the stream bed and currents. Personally, I enjoy float trips more as I feel that I am on the same team for the clients. I am constantly coaching them, readily available to change flies or undo tangles. When a fish is hooked, I have to do my part controlling the boat and netting the trout. When wading, I still coach up my clients, but it is less about what I do and everything about how the client handles the situation. I also feel that while guiding one on one is valuable, having two clients spread out in an area has me running back and forth trying to split my time as fairly as possible. If one client is less skilled than another, he/she will demand more of my time, leaving the other client to fish more on their own.
Please contact us to see what kind of trip we can offer you. Some clients enjoy fly fishing both from the boat and the banks. Later in the season, once the water levels drop we can offer a shorter float trip with some wading mixed in. Many gravel bars are exposed and spending a little time fly fishing a side channel or thoroughly working a mid stream riffle can be very productive, satisfying both options. Whichever technique you prefer, give us a call and we can answer any questions with all the information for your Montana fly fishing guide trip.