Some years, this last week of July is the week when great fishing starts to taper in the Missoula area…
Not this year!
Spruce moths have arrived early on the Blackfoot, and the big golden stonefly game continues in spades on the Clark Fork. And, on the right grassy bank on a windy afternoon, hoppers and ants have begun to sway big browns.
Blackfoot River Fly Fishing Report:
Yesterday marked our first sighting of the small tan moth called Spruce. About the size of a penny, this bug when splayed out spent on the water must have some major protein content for trout, because the biggest fish in the river seem to get dumb for it. Who doesn’t love big cutthroat sliding up from ten foot deep jade green pools to take a size 12 elk hair caddis?
Clark Fork River Fly Fishing Report:
Going early won’t hurt you but you don’t need to beat the paperboy out of the driveway. We’ve seen good fishing on big dries last well into the afternoon this past week. Some days it takes some dialing (try some small ratty old hopper?) and other days they’ll eat the big puffy shop bug from ramp to ramp. It’s more of a “where” game right now than a “what” game, and the most oxygenated water is holding the biggest fish.
Bitterroot River Fly Fishing Report:
The upper river is crowded, and for good reason–cold water and happy cutthroat. The mid-river is a dry fly fisherman’s dream one day, and stumper the next.This is also the time of year that the slough hunters start to report sightings of serious whoppers–put on your professorial hat and do some looking for the big boys in the back sloughs right now. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Missoula Wade Fishing Report:
This is also the time of year when the uppermost portions of our drainages begin to fish great. We’ve got a fantastic veteran guide that specializes in wade trips (he got sick of rowing 5 years ago!) and hoards his secret spots like a mad-man. Give us a call if you’d like to dedicate a day to a walk-wade trip.