Fly Fishing Guide

Bitterroot River - Blackfoot River - Clark Fork River - Rock Creek - Missouri River - Fly Fishing Reports

March 9

We have warmed up some in the past week, but still not enough to consider fishing a real option.  Early Skwala conditions don’t look great.  The Bitterroot was recently hit with a massive snowstorm and the river is iced over in many places.  My guess is that we are still a week away from even considering getting on the river, even then it will be a challenge.

Fly Fishing Guide - Bitterroot River Reports

Bitterroot River Near Darby – Fly Fishing Guide

Bitterroot River Flow/Levels

Current Weather Darby, MT

Bitterroot River Near Missoula – Fly Fishing Guide

Bitterroot River Flow/Levels

Current Missoula Weather

Fly Fishing Guide - Blackfoot River at Bonner

Blackfoot River at Bonner – Fly Fishing Guide

March 9

The Blackfoot is our coldest area river and won’t be an option in the near future with the snow and cold we are currently experiencing.  This river might fish in March, but probably not until April.

Blackfoot River Flow/Levels

Current Bonner Weather

Fly Fishing Guide - Clark Fork River Above Missoula

Clark Fork River at Turah – Fly Fishing Guide

March 9

The very upper reaches of the Clark Fork near Warm Springs are about your only river option right now, and even then don’t get your hopes up much.  The rest of the river is unfloatable due to ice jams and generally unfishable due to the weather.   We need some warmer weather before the Clark Fork becomes an option.

Clark Fork River Flow/Levels

Current Turah Weather

Clark Fork River at St Regis – Fly Fishing Guide

Clark Fork River Flow/Levels

Current St Regis Weather

Fly Fishing Guide - Rock Creek River Report

Rock Creek – Fly Fishing Guide

March 9

Rock Creek is normally one of our best winter/early spring options, but even it hasn’t been spared from the snow and cold.  Access will be your first issue and ice will be your second.  It’s going to take several days of warmer weather for our local rivers to thaw out.  Keep an eye on streamflows when and if that ever happens.

Rock Creek Flow/Levels

Current Clinton Weather

Fly Fishing Guide - Missouri River Reports

Missouri River below Holter Dam – Fly Fishing Guide

March 9

Word from the local fly shops on the Mo is:  not yet.  Boat ramps are still inaccessible, parking areas for wade spots are snowed in and there are still ice jams on the river in places.  Soon?  Maybe, Mother Nature will dictate the terms the spring.

Missouri River Flow/Levels

Current Wolf Creek Weather

Another Day on the River, by Tony Reinhardt

…I was back out with Brian and Bridger the trout dog, and we were also joined by Brian’s friend Bruce.  The weather was a little dicey with rain and thunderstorms in the forecast so we chose to stay close to home on the Bitterroot around Hamilton.  That choice was fine with me after the fishing yesterday and I was looking for another all day dry fly affair.

We started with double dries and it didn’t take long for Bruce to connect with the first fish of the day.  The action was fairly steady in the morning with mostly smaller and medium sized cutts and cuttbows coming to the dry.  There weren’t many bugs around early so I was hoping a hatch would get the fish fired up.

We pulled up into a side channel to look for some fish and with no rises Bruce ended up sticking a few on a dropper.  We took a break for lunch there and while we were eating a few PMDs started coming off and some heads showed.

Brian set off on foot with the dry fly rod and fooled a few in short order including the biggest fish of the day.  It was a big cutt in the 18-20″ range but it ended up foul hooked on the double dry rig and I forced the issue a little to get the trout in quickly and it broke off.  After getting back to the main river I still wasn’t seeing the number of bugs I wanted so I switched the guys over to a dry/dropper rig.

That’s one of the surest things to get the fish up and rising, and not five minutes after that a fish ate Bruce’s dry and the Green Drakes started coming off.  It was back to the dry fly rig for us and the fellas started raising more fish.  It was busy in the afternoon and our average size got a little better too.

A couple of browns came to the net, but it was still mainly cutthroat and bows with most from 12-15″ and a nice 17″ cuttbow that Brian landed toward the end of the float.  We had a couple of storms around us mid-day, but nothing too terrible and for the most part it was pleasant weather.  Another great day on the Bitterroot with a couple of good guys and the best boat dog around,.

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