Montana trip Help 6/7-6/15

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Nate Dutton, May 29, 2014.

  1. Nate Dutton I'm a teacher, I fish to eat!

    Posts: 790
    Kiana, AK
    Ratings: +2 / 0
    Hey guys, it's been a long time but I am down from the great white north to chase some trout. I am driving to Michigan to see my girlfriend's family and have planned to spend extra time in MT to fish. I will be driving I-90 with a detour through the park. What I am looking for is, what waters to hit in my time range of early to mid June, have to be wade able. My girlfriend will be with me as well and it will be her first fly trip. I would almost like names of fly shops throughout Montana that have treated you well, so I can drop some hard earned Alaska coinage on them. Finally any camp grounds that have showers and bathrooms wouldn't be appreciated by my girlfriend. Thanks in advance guys, sorry for the short notice, it was a spur of the moment thing. Feel free to PM if you like.
  2. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,827
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,734 / 0
    Be prepared for some high skinny water. That's all I'm gonna say.
  3. Kyle Smith Active Member

    Posts: 2,017
    Bozeman, MT
    Ratings: +301 / 0
    Beating runoff is going to be a bitch this year. Lots of the great spots for June will be more blown out than usual. If you're lucky, Rock Creek will be high but fishable with golden stones hatching. Or book a day at Depuy's.
  4. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,827
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,734 / 0
    Deleted. Double post.
  5. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,827
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,734 / 0
    I was up on the Big Hole the other day. The river is in the trees. A flood watch in Melrose. And the tea colored water is a dark brown. I stopped by Birch Creek also. It's running about a foot higher than usual. The Beaverhead in Dillon is Muddy. Probably coming out of Grasshopper Creek or Rattlesnake creek.
  6. freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

    Posts: 4,165
    Edgewood, WA
    Ratings: +800 / 1
    OK, I'll bite. How the hell do you have "high & skinny water"? High this time of year yes, skinny in August yes... but both at the same time? :eek:.

    To the original post... your timing is not good and you will just need to check with the area shops just before you head out to see what might be in shape.
  7. Rick Todd Active Member

    Posts: 1,861
    Ferndale/Winthrop
    Ratings: +237 / 0
    Think tailwaters like the Missouri, Beaverhead or Big Horn. Or try some stillwaters like Georgetown Reservoir, Clark Canyon Reservoir, Henry's Lake or Hebgen Lake. Slough Creek in YNP may be fishable but like others have said, check with local fly shops. Try Grizzly Hackle in Missoula, or any of the shops in West Yellowstone.
  8. Derek Young 2011 Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide Of The Year

    Posts: 2,703
    Snoqualmie, WA
    Ratings: +889 / 1
    +1 on the Grizzly Hackle and Kingfisher in Missoula. There is a nice RV park in St. Regis with excellent amenities if you're in that area, as well as a killer hot springs along the Clark Fork before you get to Paradise.

    This will be a tough spring in Montana but Rick's hit it on the nose - think tailwaters, and that means the MO more than likely, where the fine folks at Headhunters or Cross Currents will take care of you.
  9. BDD Active Member

    Posts: 2,239
    Ellensburg, WA
    Ratings: +223 / 2
    OMJ refers to rivers, streams, and creeks as skinny water, regardless of the actual current conditions, as a way to differentiate between lakes, ponds, and reservoirs.
    Old Man likes this.
  10. Old406Kid Active Member

    Posts: 328
    Spokane, WA
    Ratings: +89 / 0
    Sorry to say but not the best timing this year with all of the above average snowpack in all of the major drainages.
    I'm in Billings right now and drove over from Spokane last Saturday. Everything I passed along the way was blown out and chocolate milk muddy.
    Fished the Bighorn Sunday and did o.k. but it's bank full and wading spots are few and far between and visibility
    decreases as each muddy feeder creek dumps in.
    The Yellowstone here in Billings is expected to reach flood stage tomorrow with thunderstorm
    activity in the forecast.
    Wish I had better news.
  11. Tom P. Tom P.

    Posts: 16
    Lake Forest Park Washington
    Ratings: +21 / 0
    According to Headhunters fly shop blog the Missouri near Wolf Creek is at 10900. I floated it at the end of April when flow was at 8000 and thought wade fishing would be really tough. Headhunters in Craig was terrific.
  12. Hem Member

    Posts: 215
    Three Forks, Mt.
    Ratings: +12 / 0
    Everything blown out bad.Don't believe any reports of marginal water.I checked out the Upper Madison last Monday....ended up fishing on Cliff Lake.Tailwaters and lakes the only option with warm weather continuing for the next 4-5 days.This could last awhile 'fraid to say.
  13. hydrological beads are NOT flies and snagging is just ghetto

    Posts: 563
    inland
    Ratings: +111 / 0
    dont beleive you cant have great fishing in MT right now, you just gotta be smart, many places are toast right now. dont dream of fishing the jellystoe this month, but a certain tailwater trib has clean waterfor 20 miles, great dry fly fishing, and easy, albeit deeper wading right now. sure, your not going to be wading the middle, but fish on the edges are greedy. another has some rising fish, but has great nymphing. any kind of boat or guide might open up more options. lakes, spring creeks, and higher elevation streams all have options. you wont see as many people right now. you might fing salmonflies by the middle of the month, too. or you can beleive the naysayers. most of them dont live here.
  14. hydrological beads are NOT flies and snagging is just ghetto

    Posts: 563
    inland
    Ratings: +111 / 0
  15. Kyle Smith Active Member

    Posts: 2,017
    Bozeman, MT
    Ratings: +301 / 0
    I fished the upper on Sunday. Shitloads of sad-faced vacationers, and a raging brown Madison. I high-sticked along the bank with a turd-n-worm and hooked into several nice fish. You just have to fish to the conditions, to a point.
  16. Hem Member

    Posts: 215
    Three Forks, Mt.
    Ratings: +12 / 0
    Monday it was worse.Who wants to fish in puke if they don't have to.I caught a dozen nice fish in Cliff with beautiful clear water.Did notice a bunch of tourists at 3 Dollar with glum faces.:D
    Kyle Smith likes this.
  17. Jim Ficklin Genuine Montana Fossil

    Posts: 2,441
    Columbia Basin
    Ratings: +706 / 0
    Early June is tough back home. Lake hatches aren't very prolific yet, streams are extremely high & off-color. Must be why I shot gophers & tied flies in June, fished high elevation beaver ponds or a true secret spot known only to few locals. Fortunately, that spot remains secret.
  18. Old406Kid Active Member

    Posts: 328
    Spokane, WA
    Ratings: +89 / 0
    If the schedule allows, you might be better to beat it for Michigan and hope for better conditions on your way home.
    Ron McNeal likes this.
  19. scottwhited New Member

    Posts: 5
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    The rockies are tough this time of year but since you're to headed Michigan why not fish the driftless area (the large area where minnesota, wisconsin and iowa meet)? I've only fished the Wisconsin area but have done it many times and it fishes great this time of year.
  20. RogueBum Spey casting for Steelies year round

    Posts: 136
    The Rogue River
    Ratings: +40 / 0
    Just a thought...

    I take a trip to Western Montana every year around July or August to visit family and fish. About 2 years ago, I was there around the 4th of July and everything was completely blown out. From Kalispell to Missoula, the fly shops were saying that there wasn't going to be any fishable waters for at least a week.

    Long story short, I ended up taking the 2 from Kalispell (heading west) out to Thompson Lake and followed the Thompson River all the way down to where it dumped into the Clark Fork. There is a gravel logging road (in really good shape) that follows the river for it's entire length. You can't get lost if you tried! It was some of the best fishing I think I had done in a long time!

    Small , but feisty brook trout at the head, rainbows and browns through the length taking dry flies all day. I didn't see a single person for the whole trip. When everything else was blown out, the Thompson was perfect!

    Something to think about.