Fish Kill Update
The Yellowstone River is now closed to fishing and all other recreational activities due to a fish-killing parasite. Read for more info.
Current Hoot Owl Closures- 7/16/16
Lots of mild weather in the region the past week or two. With the nice weather our rivers have cooled down and made for some real good July fishing. A couple of the water ways in the area have been lifted off of the Hoot Owl Closure!! Very good news for those of us that enjoy the evening dry fly bite.
Steelhead Trip Olympic Peninsula
We had a last minute cancellation on Rod's hosted steelhead trip to the Olympic Peninsula of Washington state so there are now two spots available. This trip is usually booked up a year in advance so having a spot open up is pretty uncommon because the area is so pristine with incredible fishing. The OP is one of the last great Wild Steelhead runs on the West coast and pair that with the rainforest habitat that the rivers flow through and it's a spectacular combination.
Hoot Owl Closures Lifted
These cooler nights we've been fortunate enough to have lately have cooled the rivers down enough that FWP lifted the Hoot Owl Restrictions on the Lower Gallatin and Lower Madison yesterday. It means that we can now fish those stretches all day long. As a reminder, the Gallatin from Sheds Bridge in Four Corners down to Three Forks was closed from 2pm to midnight due to high water temps. The Lower Madison from Ennis Dam to Three Forks fell under the same closure.
It's been a strange summer from a weather standpoint. But it could have been a lot worse and things are dropping back into really good shape right now. It's only going to get better as we move into fall.
Handling Fish in Hot Water
Water temps are on the rise and Hoot Owl Restrictions are in place on several of our local rivers. It's only the second week of July. We've got a lot of summer ahead of us. There is still some really great fishing to be had, but you do have to keep a couple things in mind.
Use enough rod and a strong enough tippet to fight the fish quickly and easily. If you play a fish for too long in the warm water, it can't recover from the build up of lactic acid in its muscles. There also isn't as much oxygen in the warm water. Get them in quickly.
Leave them in the water as long as possible. If you have to get a picture, frame it out and have everything ready before you pull the fish out of the water. LIft the fish up, get your picture, and put them right back in. Minimize the time they aren't wet.
We have been seeing a lot of big, healthy, beautiful brown trout coming out of the Yellowstone this year. Our guides have been crushing it over there. With water levels and temps doing what they're doing, might as well make the most of it while you can. Here's a couple of examples of what we're talking about:
Farewell to the Grateful Dead
The Grateful Dead have reunited for one final time this weekend in Chicago to celebrate 50 years of their music. The Dead have been a big part of shop owner's Rod King's life for many years. It seems like they are pretty ingrained in the fly fishing culture as well. Their music and their logo are everywhere. We've even got a Bozeman Angler sticker in their honor.
To celebrate the Grateful Dead's 50th anniversary, anyone who reads this post, stops by the shop and tells us they read it will get a free sticker.
Happy 4th of July
Happy 4th of July from all of us at The Bozeman Angler! We hope all of you have a great day on the river, on the trail, or just in the backyard. This is a great holiday for being outside, and it looks like it'll be a beautiful day out there today. We appreciate you all and have a safe and happy weekend!
Yellowstone River Update
One of the rivers in the area that we have been asked most about in the past few weeks is the Yellowstone. It certainly has the reputation and it lives up to it's name most days. In the past two weeks it has gone from high and super dirty to clear and fishing really well. Like all the rivers in the Bozeman area it has been dropping pretty steadily every day, it hasn't stabilized yet. This steep drop of flows isn't really great for the fish, as they are constantly being forced to find new homes and cover. Once the flows are level for a couple days they'll feel more at home.
The Salmonfly hatch is pretty much over this year, but you still might find a few big bugs crawling around the willows and bushes along the banks from Yankee Jim upstream. Going up into the Park could be a really good option if you want to throw big dries to hungry fish. Right on the tail of the Salmonflies are the Golden Stones, and there were a lot on the water last week up high.
The Yellowstone Is Fishing
The Yellowstone is fishing again. After what seemed like a pretty long while, everything is good once again. It was just a few days ago that it really started to clear up and fish well. The caddis and PMDs are starting to really pop, and the salmonflies are out in full force. The big bugs are the big news over here, and they are moving up river at a rapid pace. Like everywhere else this year, they won't be around too long!
If nothing is happening on top then nymphing and streamer fishing is really good. Ladd got his clients onto this nice brown with sparkle minnows and McCune's sculpins dead drifted under a strike indicator: