Montana Fishing Reports

As we continue to progress into our fall season water temperatures are cooling and fish are now transitioning from their summer patterns to mid autumn patterns. Summer hatches such as tricos have faded but some of the early fall hatches such as the tiny psuedocleons (a small blue winged olive) can be important. On warmer days hoppers can still be relevant on some fisheries so its not quite time to give up on terrestrials. Trout are transitioning as the water temps slowly drop with cooler days and longer nights. Often late September water temps are ideal on the larger rivers while on smaller mountain streams they can be on the cold side. The larger rivers tend to fish best in mid fall (and the spring creeks). 

Southwest Montana Fishing Reports Overview

- Very Good
Montana fishing reports
Flows on most rivers have dropped to their base flows. There are only a few relevant hatches this time of year but they can be important at times. Terrestrials are winding down but can still be productive on warmer days. The fall brown trout run is still a few weeks away on most waters but the...Read more

Yellowstone River Fishing Report

- Very Good
Yellowstone River Montana
Current Conditions: The Yellowstone River has fished pretty well this season even in the wake of the June floods. The flooding did create some new river features so if you haven't floated the river in a while make sure to keep an eye out. The river is now at its lower base flows but is fishing well...Read more

Upper Madison River Fishing Report

- Very Good
Madison River Montana
Current Conditions: The Upper Madison is still producing great days of fishing. Early morning streamer fishing has been solid but short lived once the sun gets higher. Browns are just beginnging to get colored up and streamer action should become more consistent as we move forward. Terrestrial...Read more

Lower Madison River Fishing Report

- Good
Lower Madison River
Current Conditions: The Lower Madison water temperatures have dropped with the cooler days and long nights and is fishing well. Hoppers can still produce in the afternoon for the patient angler looking for a handful of good surface eats if it is a warm day. The trout are fairly opportunistic this...Read more

Gallatin River Fishing Report

- Good
Gallatin River Montana
Current Conditions: The Gallatin is fishing well in the Canyon once the water warms up. With the longer nights and cooler days the river in the canyon can take a little while to wake up. Small nymph rigs have been the most consistent ways to fish. Stick with smaller size 16-20 patterns. The river's...Read more

Montana Spring Creeks Fishing Report

- Good
Montana spring creeks fishing report
Current Conditions: Most of the important hatches have wrapped up for the summer on the spring creeks. The fall baetis is still a few weeks away. Terrestrials can still produce and ants or a small hopper are always worth trying either by prospecting or sight casting. Long leaders and perfect...Read more

Stillwater River Fishing Report

- Good
Stillwater River
Current Conditions: The Stillwater has fished well this season even in the wake of the early summer flooding. The June floods changed some of the river quite a bit in some places so be aware if floating. Attractor dry and dropper fishing is slowing down as water temperatures continue to cool...Read more

Boulder River Fishing Report

- Good
Boulder River Montana
Current Conditions: The Boulder is at late season lower flows. Wade fishing is the main option at these flows. Morning water temperatures are cold and it takes the fish some time to wake up so there is no need for a super early start. The lower river still has some decent hopper after lunch on...Read more

Jefferson River Fishing Report

- Fair
Jefferson River Montana
Current Conditions: The Jefferson is a decent fall option now that water temperatures have cooled. Flows are still much lower than average but should continue to rebound a bit as irrigation winds down and some more water returns to the river. Hoppers can still be an option on warmer late September...Read more

East Gallatin River Fishing Report

- Fair
East Gallatin River
Current Conditions: The East Gallatin has been fishing well as of late. Flows are low which is typical for fall and the fishing is on the more technical side. Tricos are mostly over but there are some psuedocleons which are a very small (think size 24) baetis mayfly in the late mornings and early...Read more

Missouri River Fishing Report

- Good
Missouri River Montana
Current Conditions: The Missouri near Townsend is an option as water temperatures cool. Don't expect high fish counts on the upper river but persistent anglers can hunt for a few nice trout that wander up the river from the lake below. Streamer fisherman may catch more walleye than trout on this...Read more

Ruby River Fishing Report

- Good
Ruby River
Current Conditions: The Ruby is flowing at nice flows for this late in the season below the reservoir. Water temperatures are cooling and fishing has improved a bit but there is still some sediment getting pulled from the bottom of the lake on the lower reaches. Prospecting the riffles with smaller...Read more

Montana Lakes Fishing Report

- Very Good
Montana Ranch Lakes
Current Conditions: Lakes are beginning to wind down but can still produce some action for ardent stillwater anglers. Try working streamers or leach patterns along weed edges. The Month Ahead: As we move later into September lakes will start winding down as fish start to move into the rivers. Long...Read more

Small Streams Fishing Report

- Fair
Small stream fishing Montana
Current Conditions: The smaller streams are a winding down fast as the water temperatures drop. The mountain streams are already pretty cold so if you are targeting them hit the afternoon on warmer days. Meadow streams in the valley will still produce if they have decent flows. The Month Ahead:...Read more