The Gallatin is low and clear and is fishing well for most of its length. There are ice shelves present, especially lower down in the valley so most of the fishing is going to be up in the canyon towards Big Sky. Nymphing is the best bet and it pays to skip a lot of water and jump from one deep run to another. Look for steady currents that aren’t too strong but still enough to bring food to trout. Slow water that is 3-6 feet deep and located just below a riffle is always a good bet. Nymphing stone fly nymphs trailed by a baetis nymph or midge larva is a good bet but egg patterns and worms are also good flies to try.
The Month Ahead:
The Gallatin fishes well all winter. Don’t mess with the fast water as the fish will have moved into the slower and deeper runs. There are several springs near the Big Sky junction that keep the upper canyon waters ice free and this is a great place to fish in the colder months. During cold snaps the valley waters develop slush and big ice shelves. If you find icy conditions just keep driving upstream towards Big Sky. Upstream of Big Sky ice is also a problem so the 15-20 miles from Big Sky down is the best on the coldest days. Nymphing smaller patterns and eggs is the big producer.
Long Term Fishing Forecast:
The info above will be the forecast for most of the winter. April will produce a little more variety as the baeits mayflies become active again.