Spring has finally sprung here, and we are now in that sweet spot between winter and spring runoff. Both the Upper and Lower Madison are in great shape and have been fishing great! Choose your poison, because you can catch fish on pretty much any tactic you prefer: dries, nymphs and/or streamers.
We are starting to see Baetis hatches riverwide in addition to Skwallas. The Skwalla hatch on the Madison is not prolific, but has been becoming more and more significant for many years now. You can catch some fish on Swalla dries between Varney and the Lake if you stick with it. It also helps explain why a size 6 or 8 Turd is such a great performer.
If you're gonna fish streamers, low and slow tends to work best. We like Screamers, Buggers, Slum Lords and Sparkle Minnows.
For indicator nymphing it's hard to beat the Turd, Worm and Egg, although lots of other patterns will also produce. Small PTs, dark Perdigons, Mega Prince among others.
It's a wonderful time to be out on the Madison and other SW Montana rivers! But please be aware that Rainbows are spawning all over the place, so watch where you're walking and don't target actively spawning fish!
Streamers: BH Krystal Bugger Black, BH Krystal Bugger Olive, Mini Dungeon Olive, Laser Legal Olive/White, Mini D&D White/Pearl, Peanut Envy Olive and Black, El Sculpito Olive, Eric’s Smooth Criminal Olive, Sculpin Leech Gray.
Rainbow trout are spawning right now so please be mindful of where you're stepping in the river. We're in the midst of our annual Fly SALE. Checkout our SALE flies here for killer deals on your favorite patterns. If you're interested in what the river looks like here in town, give the live cam a gander below!
- MRFC Owner/Outfitter Joe Dilschneider