The storm track recently changed forcing the withdraw of sunny near record high temperatures with cool cloudy conditions perfect for fishing. These recent storms brought snow to the high country and misty weather to the valleys. Over the course of the last ten days, we've been seeing great fishing action throughout the area. One aspect anglers should head caution toward are the changing water levels associated with the recent precipitation and more importantly the local farmers discontinuing to draw irrigation water. Several local watersheds saw an approximate 15% increase in volume roughly over three days, which may have a temporary effect on catching. There are plenty of rivers to fish around southwest Montana so check the gauges before you head out. Big fish have been on the move.
Throughout the course of the week, our guides hosted several groups of beginner (never-ever) anglers as well as repeat seasoned anglers who all successfully caught a variety of very nice brown and rainbow trout approaching the 20" mark on both the Yellowstone and Madison rivers. On another trip, I was delighted to share McCoy's Spring Creek near Dillon, MT on a cloudy day with two seasoned anglers. We enjoyed lots of action after lunch including seven notable hookups with fish ranging from 18-23" on small size 20 dry flies. Great fishing should continue as big fish aggressively put on weight for winter. Depending on the conditions, anglers currently have prime opportunity to catch big fish with small dries, streamers, or nymph rigs. Miles