The Upper Madison is still fishing pretty well in both the wade and float sections, with steady dry fly fishing throughout the morning and consistent dropper and nymphing in the afternoon hours. Things are starting to heat up a bit so getting out somewhat early has been beneficial but not absolutely essential. The water flows are staying steady, sitting right around 1000cfs river-wide. With the water temperatures rising, make sure to fish as heavy of tippet as possible in order to fight and land fish quickly. When the water temps are close to or above 70 degrees the fish become very stressed and can die if overexerted.
In the mornings we have been seeing some decent PMD hatches and the fish are willing to come up and eat a properly presented Purple Haze in a size #16 as well as other PMD dries. We also still have fish keying in on different Nocturnal Stonefly patterns. Fishing Royal Chubby Chernobyls in a size #14 and #12 will bring fish up through the morning and into the afternoon. Other patterns that have been working well are Jake’s Trigger Belly #12 and the Thunder Thighs Hopper #12. We are also getting into our terrestrial season and throwing large hoppers close to the banks will start to bring the occasional fish to the surface. Flying ants are also a great option for the heat of the day. Amy’s Ant, Ant Acid, and the Royal PMX #14 will peak fish’s interest throughout the day.
The Nymphing has also been a good option for those high heat hours of the day. Leading with a stonefly variation has been productive, with patterns such as the 20 incher #10, Lex’s Improved Stone #10, and the larger Prince Nymphs producing fish when things get tough. As far as the dropper, we have been fishing #16 Lightning Bugs in both silver and gold, CDC Prince Nymphs #14 and #16, and also the Red Squirrel Nymph #14.
Keep in mind that the Lower Madison is still on Hoot Owl Restriction so be sure to get your fishing in before 2pm if you intend to fish below Ennis Lake. If you need any additional information make sure to give us a call here at the shop or swing in and we will do our best to help you out with your fish catching needs.