ENNIS – A full fishing closure is in effect for the upper Madison River from Ennis Lake upstream to Hebgen Dam.
A malfunction at Hebgen Dam caused flows on the Madison River to drop Tuesday, stranding fish on riffles and concentrating fish in deep water. NorthWestern Energy is working to fix the dam.
This closure will remain in place until the issue at the dam is resolved and flows are fully restored to the river.
The impacts to the fishery are still unclear. Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks staff and volunteers will be on the river Wednesday moving stranded fish back into the river channel, and NorthWestern Energy staff have advised that it is safe to do so. Because flows are unable to be restored immediately, it’s likely that cold temperatures will have a greater impact on spawning redds than foot traffic.