By Montana Grant

Posted: December 8, 2022

The past few years have been drought and low water fishing conditions. Many Hoot Owl waters were closed, and others just dried up. Cold water means cold water trout. Without an abundant flow, fishing is a no go.

Montana is getting plenty of snowpack so far this season. This snow will ultimately melt and flow into our trout streams later this Spring and Summer. Without it, fish and fishermen will be high and dry.

Our weekly snow events are thanks to the La Nina conditions. Pacific Ocean currents impact the weather patterns that eventually bring the water. In Winter, that means snow.

Skiers love the early and abundant snow. If they don’t get enough snow, they can use snow machines to make their own, at the rivers’ expense. Fishermen and fish don’t get that option. Farmers also need water right when fishing is best. If there is not enough water, everything gets impacted.

Snow Stations, located in the mountains and watersheds, measure snow levels. This data is transmitted to local agencies to interpret, predict, and report on.

Normally, our snowpack is around 80-100%. This year is looking way better. Snow may be a pain to shovel and navigate but it means better fishing later. More moisture also means fewer fires, healthier forests and grasslands, and happier wildlife populations.

Back in the day, we used to pray for snow. In Maryland even light snow would close schools. As a student/teacher that meant we could sleep in, go hunting, or…

Make it snow!

Montana Grant

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