Fly Fishing Bigfork Montana

Sarah ‘s first time fly fishing and she out-fished her husband! Sorry Tim…

It has been warm and dry for the last couple weeks and our run-ff is way ahead of the predicted schedule.  A significant rain event could change things but for now our rivers are shaping up nicely. It’s hard to believe that we have some fish-able conditions with all the snow and doom & gloom predictions. Mother Nature is unpredictable…Not even the water managers with all their perfect rules of measure can figure it out.

Flathead River – The Flathead drainage is still very high and will likely continue to yoyo up and down on a slight downward trend over the next couple weeks. As it approaches the 20k mark and greens up a bit, it will start to fish. Hopefully before the end of the month.

The South Fork below Hungry Horse is running well below average for this time of year and can provide a good clean water float. The water is still a bit cold at 42ish so the latter part of the day is a better call.

Swan River – The upper river has been fishing. It is still big and pushy and tough to find soft water, but you can catch fish on streamers and nymphs. Swimming tandem streamers under an indicator is a productive method. Stoneflies and worms will also catch fish. The sections down from 10-1 are much slower and will provide some softer water for those who want to troll some streamers, but the upper reaches have also seen some willing fish.

The Bay and Lower River are also fishing decent. Some fish have been rising in the Bay late evening providing some dry action for mid-sized cutties on small parachutes. The lower river is hauling ass and tough to fish but the fishing has been fairly productive. We’ve had a few (like 3) starting to look for the big dry. Streamers and nymphs have been the most productive. The Access is now closed on Rainbow drive and putting in at the Bridge is a pain.

Blackfoot River – The Blackfoot is fishing. It is still BIG but the softer water is producing some fish. It’s still a ways out from any sort of productive dry fly fishing but you can make a day of it and more than likely catch a couple creatures while you’re at it. High flows and off color water in June are the best time to catch BIG fish on the Blackfoot…just say’n.  The rowdy flows of mid June make for some entertaining fishing and a great boat ride as well…Salmon flies should start to pop in good numbers very soon. Large stonefly nymphs, worms and streamers will work best. Swimming tandem streamers under an indicator is a productive method.

Lower Clark Fork River – Still a ways out but it should be an option before the end of the month .


One of our Guide friends Chris “McMac” and his wife Heather enjoying some Missouri river dry fly fishing after a few days of guiding. Yes, the Fat Albert still works…

Jason Lanier
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