- Maiden Rock 2,960 cfs
- Melrose 2,740 cfs
- Glen 2,980 cfs
The Big Hole River continues to fish well as the flows drop and water clears. Salmon Flies and Golden Stones are coming off along the upper river from Maiden Rock Fishing Access Site (FAS) upstream to Sportsmen’s Camp and the fish are on them!
The water level and visibility are perfect for dry flies. The fish are on the banks and along the foam lines. Check out our Montana Fly Fishing Specials page to learn more about our Montana Fly Fishing vacation packages.
TACTICS & PATTERNS:
It’s a dry fly smorgasbord! Salmon Flies and Golden Stones are hatching along the upper reaches and the hatch is full on! We’re also catching fish along the entire river on Caddis, PMD’s and Green Drakes when the big bug bite drops off later in the day. A dry/dropper rig in the am will be ticket if the fish aren’t on the big dry right out of the gate.
- Try a Rogue River Stone Fly, Carnage Stone, Turner’s Bank Robber, Gypsy King, Kyle’s King Kong Salmon, MacSalmon or Improved Sofa Pillow in size #4-6.
- Rogue Golden Stone, Chubby Chernobyl, Rogue Golden Stone size #6-10
- Try a Pat’s Stone size #10 or Beadhead Prince, Beadhead Pheasant Tail as a dropper if needed.
The streamer fishing has been very good with the river continuing to drop and clear. I prefer a medium-fast strip and pause, but a slow strip and tight line will catch fish as well. Color preference will typically track the color of the water. Bright when the water is off color, natural and muted when it’s clearer. Cloudy days will always be your best bet for good streamer action, but the fish have been chasing streamers in the bright sun as well.
- Try a JJ Special, Lyle’s Choice, Yellow Yummy, or Zonker in Copper, yellow or white size # 2-6, Trick or Treat, Olive Brown or Black Crystal Bugger, or Yuk Bug, Coffey’s Sparkle Minnow in size # 4-8.
- Try dead drifting your streamer under an indicator if the fish aren’t willing to make chase.
- Add a big nymph dropper or second smaller streamer if you’re getting short strikes.
Nymphing with two flies and strike indicator is still productive as Salmon fly nymphs are crawling to the bank to hatch and yeah… fish are looking for them. Do let your Stone fly swing at the end of your drift, as this often brings more strikes than dead drift alone.
- Pat’s Rubber Leg Stone, Chocolate Trout Retriever, Double Bead Peacock Stone or Pepperoni Yuk Bug in size # 4-6.
- Beadhead Pheasant Tails, Prince Nymphs, Caddis larva, San Juan Worms in red, wine or pink size # 6-10 are all good dropper choices.
TIPS: Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks (FWP) has removed the floating hazard signs (because of a log jam) along the lower Big Hole River between Glen Fishing Access Site (FAS) and Pennington Bridge (FAS) but recommends “people go with someone who is familiar with that stretch the first time because of all known hazards”.
For more information on Montana fly fishing and guided fishing trips on the Big Hole River please contact FishTales Outfitting.
(Report and photos by Michael Stack – FishTales Outfitting LLC)