Yellowstone River Fishing Report

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Yellowstone River Fishing Report

Current Conditions:
The Yellowstone has recently produced some inconsistent days and some fantastic days as summer starts to wind down. As temps begin to drop and the number of anglers on the water drops the fishing should really turn on. Nymphing is still producing – try a rig with a very long indicator with no weight and make sure not to over mend. Big trailed by small is still the way to go so a wooly bugger, sculpin, rubber lets etc. on top trailed by a smaller attractor nymph is a good choice. The dry fly fishing has also really improved but the small mayfly style patterns from size 18-12 like grey wulffs and adams patterns are out producing terrestrials on many days. A pot luck of mayflies start to come off this time of year but it is enough to get trout looking. On overcast days you can run into a decent mahogany spinner fall in the later afternoon and evening. Fish are still in the faster riffles and heavy water but they will start to slide further back in the runs as water temperatures drop. Some trout are also moving into the slower tailout slicks and the big foam eddies looking for bugs on the surface. Streamer fishing is slowly improving and should get better as we move farther into the month.

The Month Ahead:
Fishing should remain very good through September on the Yellowstone. Baetis hatches will start showing up later in the month providing some good dryfly fishing, streamer fishing will also improve. As water temps drop try a sinking head like a 200 grain line. The shorter “streamer tip” lines aren’t much better than a floating line so if you are going to go big you may as well do it right. 

Long Term Fishing Forecast:
The Yellowstone can productive great fishing through October and into November with continued baetis hatches but begins to turn off in December as winter settles in for good and ice shelves develop.