Current Big Hole River real-time flows are not available USGS due to icing. Estimated at 175cfs – 200cfs
The Big Hole River remains locked up with ice in the lower reaches up through Salmon Fly Fishing Access Site (FAS) and the Fish & Game FAS further up. George Grant FAS and reaches upstream are fishing well and your best bets for winter fly fishing on the Big Hole River.
TACTICS AND PATTERNS: NYMPHING
Nymphing a two fly rig will be your most productive method. Rubber-legged stonefly patterns #8-10 in black or brown are a good choice. For a second fly, there lots of midges around so midge patterns in red or other patterns with red will work. Try a Copper John, Serendipity, or San Juan Worm #8-14
There are fish rising to midges, look for rise forms in softer water along the banks and back eddy’s. Try a Purple Haze, Parachute Adams or Griffith’s Gnat #14-18.
Streamer bite is still a little chilly. Better on warm, cloudy day’s as you might expect. Try dead drifting, slowing down your retrieve or a classic quartering downstream swing. Smaller sculpin patterns in olive and or brown or a Zonker in natural/pearl or natural/copper #6-10 are a good choice.
Be aware of winter fishing hazards like drifting ice, shelf ice and rapid weather changes. So be prepared with appropriate winter fishing clothing. If you have studded boots or cleats… where them! The rainbow trout are starting to spawn , so if you see patches of bright gravel, watch your step, and please stay clear!
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
For more information on Montana fly fishing and guided fishing trips the Big Hole River please contact FishTales Outfitting.
(Report by Michael Stack, FishTales Outfitting LLC)