August is here, or better known as the dog days of summer. Seasoned anglers know that fishing conditions at the end of July and most of August are a gamble. This is, and always has been, fire season in the Rockies. Our last bad year was 2017. This year is pretty bad. That’s just the way she goes. Luckily the smoke/air quality has been moderate. We are looking at some substantial moisture and cooler temps this week. That should turns things around for a bit and cool the rivers down, hopefully.
We have mostly been doing morning half day trips on the Flathead River. Water temps have been acceptable and will drop a bunch this week with the rain and cool temps. We are still seeing some good fish come to dry flies when a proper drift occurs. Terrestrials and little mayfly patterns are still the ticket. #18 parachute mayflies, and #18 little black ants or beetles will hunt off a small grasshopper pattern. A few nice fish are coming to the hopper.
The Clark Fork has been too warn to ethically do full day trips. It has been ranging from 66-72 just about everyday for a month. The last several days it’s been reaching near 75. Way too warm. Hopefully the cooler weather and moisture will come to fruition this week and drop the temps. Pay attention to the graphs and do the right thing. Trout mortality increases substantially around 68.