Fishing on the Upper remains solid, if somewhat unpredictable. Rainy cool weather this week has given us and the fish a reprieve from the full sun and 90 degree days we’ve faced for most of July. The only downside to this cool down is that it will probably push back the start of any real hopper fishing until it warms up and dries out again. That being said, the dry dropper rig has still been consistent. Fishing a small royal or purple chubby up top with a small dropper like a French Dip, Lightning Bug, or Pheasant Tail underneath is still putting fish in the net, while a single dry like a Finfetcher or Missing link caddis seems to be the key to numbers, as long as you don't mind sorting through a bunch of smaller fish to find a big one. The next few days have streamer fishing written all over them. Dark streamers like a black Dungeon or Screamer should get some love on these overcast days.
The Lower Madison has a full fishing closure from Warm Springs up to the Dam beneath Ennis Lake. The rest of the Lower Madison is still on a Hoot Owl restriction, so no fishing after 2PM. The cool wet weather has cooled the Upper Madison in recent days, topping out at only 62 degrees yesterday. With the cooler temps, Northwestern Energy reduced the flow out of Hebgen dam to 1030 this morning. There’s still plenty of water throughout the river, with Kirby running at 1280 CFS as of this afternoon.
Try to avoid fish pictures when you can out there. Everybody loves a great trout photo, but not as much as you think they do. 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!
- MTS Guide Bob "Holy Pierogi" Hogue