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Great fishing hotspots in Montana's trout river

Updated on September 28, 2010

Well today my brother and I went fishing for trout over at St.Regis,Montana on a little river called the Little Joe,which isn't so little at the present time,as the snow is melting real fast.

Anyhow we got up there to one of my favorite spots and started fishing and I caught a little Brook trout,then another.My brother went down stream and then returned saying the water was running too fast.

So we decided to fish upstream and I caught two more brookies and my brother caught five brookies.We walked for a 1/4 mile upstream and all this time we were wading through snow a couple feet deep.I stepped out on a log and fell through the snow bank that was under me.Thank god I didn't fall in the river.Well I pulled myself out of the hole and we decided to go back down and try the lower stretches of the river.

We drove back down and went up another branch of the river,then turned onto a road heading towards Moore lake.Got about 1/4 mile up the road and ran into two feet of snow on the road still,so decided to go back down and fish the main fork of the river.

We caught another four brookies and decided to call it a day.We shall return in two weeks to see if the water is lower from the 75* days we are having.Hopefully I can get into Moore lake with my boat and do some trolling there.

Went back a week later and got to the lake.I caught 10 Brookies and called it a day.

July 2,2009The weather now is 90* and to hot for any fishing.

July 3, 2009;

Went fishing and caught three nice Rainbows in the Clark Fork River,as the water is subsideing and the fish are starting to bite better.

Montana is the fourth largest state in the United States,and has hundreds of rivers,lakes and creeks.

The species of fish found in these waters are as follows;Brook trout;Brown trout;Rainbow trout;Golden trout;Silver salmon;Cutthroat trout;American greyling;American smelt;Burbot;Pike;Bass too name a few.

Lying in Sweet Grass County,is found the Boulder river,recognized as a great Rainbow stream by those who have fished there.The stream rises in the Gallatin National forest and flows north by the towns of Contact and McLeod to enter the Yellowstone river near Big Timber.Dirt and gravel roads parallel it's course.

Around Dillon lies the Beaverhead River which is the chief stream of the district.It is an excellant dry fly stream,offering many sizeable Brown trout and Rainbows to the dry fly angler.

Red Rock creek is alive with nice Rainbows averaging about a pound.

The Big Hole river has big Rainbows going up to six pounds,but it is more of a bait and spinner stream than a fly river.

The Madison River is flanked on the east by the Madison range .The Gallatin parallels the Madison on the east side of the mountains.At Three Forks,not far from Butte the Gallatin.Madison and Jefferson rivers merge to form the Missouri River.

Like the Madison the Gallatin flows out of Yellowstone Park.In the park it is a meandering meadow stream.Large trout are rare in this area and weigh 3/4 to a pound,chunky and considered good table fair by the locals.The Gallatin is noted for Graylings also.

Midway between the park boundary and Bozeman are certain lakes some seven miles by trail from the river.These are seven miles of vertical climbing and horses are recommended for the trip.These lakes hold the Golden trout that were planted there many years ago.They are known as the Golden trout lakes.

Hebgen lake is the most important factor in the fishing near west yellowstone.It is the storage reservoir with a shore line of 75 miles,all fairly accesable by road.All good fly fishing from the bank or boat.The fish here are in the 2 pound range and under.The chief importance of this lake is that it holds a reserve stock of fish.Four streams flowing into the lake are kept stocked with large trout that continuously run upstream.Most Browns run upstream in the fall to spawn,Rainbows also.

Another great stream that runs into the Hebgen is South Fork.This stream is very cold and clear,it is a perfect dry fly stream.Best fished late june or early july.

Two more early july hotspots are Grayling creek and Duck creek.They are also famous for mosquitoes,mud and moose.

Four lakes worth mention are Hidden,Wade,Cliff and Elk,which are lacated 15 miles west of Hebgen lake.

The Madison River is a large turbulent river.It has round glassy smooth boulders coupled with the fast current makes wading very difficult.From the middle of July through September is the best fishing using wet flies except when fish are surface feeding.

Late fall fishing is good in the lower Madison,but the best time of year are June through july before the water is released from the dam.Fishing is best a mile down from the dam.

In the lower Madison dry flies work the best.The big fish lie in water about three feet deep,moving slowly.You need a good floating fly here and colorful as the foam will obscure it.The best fishing time here is at dusk.Both Browns and Rainbows frequent this stretch of river,and weigh up to 4 pounds.

Another river of mention is the Stillwater river.It is a difficult stream to fish and produce great results.

Of course there are numerous other fishing spots in Montana which I you can find by using a Google and Yahoo map.

I have these maps on my site at free and easy to read.I also have every Fish and Game department in the United States on my site for easy access.

It's time to catch the hatch,that is the salmon hatch.Those twenty five inchers are getting ready to eat those big nymphs on a western river near you .The yellowstone will be hatching the first week in July and many more tributaries connected to it.

The upper Madison is on the hatch of SalmonFlies,so the trout are going after them now..

The Clark Fork has dropped and cleared up,so it's time to call those outfitters and get fly fishing. 

quiet times on the water
quiet times on the water


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    • flread45 profile image

      Frank 7 years ago from Montana

      you are right on..

    • trooper22 profile image

      trooper22 8 years ago from Chicago

      A brisk morning, dew soaking your shoes. Cool water, fresh air, and fly fishing!

    • eovery profile image

      eovery 8 years ago from MIddle of the Boondocks of Iowa

      I want some fish.

      Feeeeeed Meeeeee!

      Thanks for you hubs.