Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Hatches2016-11-28T23:28:04+00:00

Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Hatch Chart & Fly Patterns

Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Hatches

Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Hatches

The Blackfoot River has one of the strongest insect populations in Montana. Known most for it’s prolific stone fly hatches starting in mid-June, the Blackfoot can offer up exceptional fishing with large attractors through-out most of the summer. Just as this river starts clearing from run-off and turns green, prolific hatches of multiple insects explode into the air providing a spectacle often as entertaining as the fishing itself. It is common to have green drakes, salmon flies, golden stones, caddis, yellow sallies, and, pmds all coming off in the same day early in the summer. As summer progresses fly size tapers, but strong hatches of pmds, tricos, terrestrials, and spruce moths will keep the dry fly fishing consistent all season. As fall approaches and the terrestrials die off, BWO, mahogany, and hecuba mayflies mix in to provide good dry fly fishing late into the fall.

This information is a basic run-down of the hatch schedule for the Blackfoot River. Every year is slightly different. Snow-pack, run-off, and weather conditions can alter the hatch times considerably. There are dozens of commercial nymph and dry fly patterns available for each individual insect. Although we tie a lot of our own flies, we have listed a few basic patterns that will help give you direction when purchasing or tying your own.

The Famous Salmon Fly

Blackfoot River Spruce Moth Cutthroat

Blackfoot River Fishing

Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Patterns

Midges (Black & Green body, white wing)
Dry Fly – Griffiths Gnat, Poly wing midge, purple haze
Nymph – Brassie, Green machine, shop vac

BWOs – (pale olive body grey wing)
Dry Fly – Para Adams, Para Haze, Sparkle, Dun, Marabou Cripple
Nymph – Pheasant tails, Green Machine, loop wing, Pheasant tail variations

Winter Stones (dark brown & black body, dark grey wing)
Dry Fly – Sparse Dark Simulators
Nymph – Prince, copper johns, Epoxy back stones

Skwala (pale olive under body w/dark grey wing)
Dry Fly – Bullet heads, CDC Bullet heads, stimulators, Rogue Foam, Chubby Chernbyl, Foam variations
Nymph – Pats Rubber Legs, Double bead stones, Epoxy back stones

Caddis (tan, green, brown body w/tan wing)
Dry Fly – Elk hair, parachute elk hair, cdc
Nymph – Sparkle pupa, birds nest

Green Drake Pale olive under body w/dark grey wing)
Dry Fly – Purple Haze, Para Adams, sparkle dun, Marabou Cripple
Nymph – Pheasant tails variations, loop wing

Salmon Fly (Orange under body w/brown wing)
Dry Fly – Foam extended body, bullet heads, Chernobyl variations, stimulator, bugmeister, PMX
Nymph – Girdle Bug, epoxy back stone, double bead stone, Yuk bug, Bitch creek

Sally Stones (pale yellow and lime green under body w/light grey wing)
Dry Fly – Para hair wing, para cdc wing
Nymph – Epoxy stones, sally stone nymphs

Golden Stone (golden yellow body w/medium brown wing)
Dry Fly –
Foam extended body, bullet heads, Chernobyl variations, stimulator, bugmeister, PMX
Nymph – Girdle Bug, epoxy back stone, double bead stone,

PMD (Pale yellow body with light grey wing)
Dry Fly
– Para Adams, Para Haze, Sparkle, Dun, Marabou Cripple, sparkle cripple
Nymph – Pheasant tails, Green Machine, loop wing, Pheasant tail variations

Mohagany Dun (mohagany body w/dark grey wing)
Dry Fly – Purple Haze, Para Adams, Sparkle Dun, Sparkle Criple, Marabou Cripple
Nymph – Pheasant tail variations

Hecuba Mayfly / Fall drake (tan/pale olive under body w/dark grey wing)
Dry Fly – Purple Haze, Para Adams, Sparkle Dun, Sparkle Criple, Marabou Cripple
Nymph – Pheasant tail variations

Terrestrials – Ants, Beetles, Hoppers, Moths (various colors and wing types)
Dry Fly – Foam Hoppers, Foam Beetles, Sparkle Ants, Bullet head hoppers, Para ants, para hoppers, Spruce Moths
Nymph – Drowned versions of all the above

Blackfoot River Fly Images

Green Drake

Golden Stone

Yellow Sally

Spruce Moth #12-#14

Images in bottom row provided by Troutnut. Visit Troutnuts website to learn more about all of our insects.