Gallatin River Fishing Report

Friday, April 9, 2021
Gallatin River Montana

Gallatin River Fishing Report

Current Conditions:
The Gallatin is low and clear and is fishing well for most of its length. The ice shelves are receding on the lower water and the river in the valley is fishing well.  Mild days are even producing some risers over the midge hatch.  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 should fish very well all the way into early May. Trout will continue to be found in their winter lies.  As the baetis hatches begin to arrive, expect some good dry fly fishing in the afternoon on cloudy days.  Pay attention to the hydrographs as weather continues to warm because on warmer days some of the lower elevation snowmelt can bring the river up and slow the fishing or spoil it completely.  When the weather is stable and after freezing nights the river should fish well.  Mornings will be slow and the best fishing will be after lunch.  For nymphs try golden stones, small attractors like copper johns and princes or baetis emergers.  San Juan worms and egg patterns are a good option as well. 

Long Term Fishing Forecast:
The Gallatin generally blows out in Mid May for several weeks.  It is only a good option during this period when short cold snaps cause the river to drop.  Even 10 inches of visibility can produce great nymph fishing during these windows.