Parks' Fly Shop fishing reports: yellowstone fishing reports and montana fishing reports

Fishing Report

This is our basic, just the facts Yellowstone country fishing report. This fishing report is organized first by jurisdiction (Yellowstone fishing reports followed by Montana fishing reports), then by river drainage, with the private lakes, spring creeks, and distant Montana waters in their own categories at the end. Small creeks in a given river drainage will be discussed under their parent drainage. If you have any specific questions, or want an up to the second report, give us a call. The links following some location names will take you to stream gauges (and in one case a webcam). Sudden spikes in streamflow usually mean muddy water.

 

Quick Links to Each Drainage/Category

In YNP: Yellowstone inside YNP, Lamar, Gardner, Madison inside YNP, Snake, Gallatin inside YNP

In Montana: Yellowstone, Madison, Private Lakes, Spring Creeks, Other Montana Waters

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone River Drainage Inside YNP

 

Yellowstone River Above the Lake and Lake to Falls

Yellowstone Lake Outlet

Updated Nov 4

Closed until July 15, 2014.

Yellowstone River, Grand Canyon (Falls to Mouth of Lamar)

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until late June.

Yellowstone River, Black Canyon (Mouth of Lamar to Gardiner)

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until early July.

Yellowstone Drainage Small Streams

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until early July.

Yellowstone Drainage Lakes and Ponds

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until mid-June.

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Lamar River Drainage

Lamar River

Lower Lamar

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until early July.

Soda Butte Creek

Silver Gate (Park Boundary)

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until early July.

Slough Creek

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until late June or early July.

Trout Lake

Updated Nov 4

Closed until July 15, 2014.


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Gardner River Drainage

Gardner River Above Osprey Falls

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until late June or early July.

Gardner River, Osprey Falls to Boiling River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until late June.

Gardner River, Boiling River to Yellowstone River

Just Below Boiling River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and only fishable occasionally until late June.

Small Streams

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and likely not fishable until late June.

Lakes

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Some will be fishable right from the opener.

 

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Madison River Drainage Inside YNP

Please note: this drainage is infested with New Zealand Mud Snails, an invasive species that poses a large threat to other river drainages in the region. Please clean your gear between fishing this drainage (especially the Firehole) and fishing elsewhere. This website includes information on how to effectively clean your gear.

Madison River

Near West Yellowstone

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. May be fishable from the start of the season, but more likely to get going in a big way around June 5.

Firehole River

At Old Faithful, Lower River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014.

Gibbon River

At Madison Junction

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely unfishable through June 5-10.

Grebe & Wolf Lakes

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely difficult to reach due to snow on the trails until around June 5.

Other Waters

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014.

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Snake River Drainage

Snake River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely unfishable until early July.

Lewis River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely unfishable until late June in the canyon, early June just below Lewis Lake and in Lewis-Shoshone Channel.

Lewis and Shoshone Lakes

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely frozen until June 5-10.


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Gallatin River Drainage Inside YNP

Gallatin River

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely unfishable until late June.

Small Streams

Updated Nov 4

Closed until Memorial Day weekend, 2014. Likely unfishable until early July.


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Montana

Yellowstone River Drainage

Yellowstone River, Gardiner to Emigrant (Gardiner Basin and Upper Paradise Valley)

Yellowstone River Webcam, Corwin Springs Stream Gauge

Updated March 10

The heavy ice that has choked the river most of the winter is finally melting out and the river should be safely floatable over its entire distance within this section for the remainder of winter/spring.

Right now we're dealing with spurts of low-elevation runoff that are muddying sections of the river each day. These spurts of runoff will abate once all the low elevation snow is gone by March 20. For now, pick and choose your spots to miss the mud.

Fishing (when/where the water is clear) is picking up fast. Warming water means more insect activity, more eager fish, and the onset of the great spring "big fly big fish" fishing. Throw streamers or dredge with big stonefly nymphs for some very good shots at larger fish that are perking up after a long, tough winter. You may also see some midge or winter stonefly hatch activity, but the better dry fly action takes place in April.

Yellowstone River, Emigrant to Shields River (Middle of Paradise Valley to just east of Livingston)

Livingston

Updated March 10

Same as above. While the ice jams have melted from this stretch, tall ice shelves still line many banks. This argues for fishing on foot for another week to ten days.

Yellowstone River, Shields River Confluence to Clark Fork Confluence

Springdale, Big Timber

Updated March 10

Same as above.

Other Waters

Updated March 10

Closed until the third Saturday in May.

 

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Madison River Drainage

Madison River, Hebgen Lake to Quake Lake

Updated march 10

You literally can't get there from here, but still fishing well. Check with Blue Ribbon Flies or the Campfire Lodge. We'll be on this water as soon as the park roads open in mid-April to cut our travel time by 2/3.

Madison River, Quake Lake to Ennis Lake

Below Quake Lake, Near Cameron

Updated march 10

Closed Quake Lake to McAtee until the third Saturday in May. Fishing well except during periods of low elevation snowmelt from McAtee to Ennis.

Madison River, Lower

Below Ennis Lake

Updated March 10

This is a great time of year for this water. Think streamers but be on the lookout for midge activity.

Hebgen and Quake Lakes

Updated March 10

Frozen until early May.

 

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Private Lakes

Story Lakes

Updated Nov 4

About done for the year now. Check back in late April.

Merrell Lake

Updated October 16

Merrell stunk all season, and unfortunately it still stinks.

Burns Lake

Updated October 16

Very similar to Story Lake.


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Spring Creeks

Armstrong's, Nelson's, Depuy

Updated march 10

This is my favorite time to fish the creeks. Good fish numbers, low rates, the potential to hit midge and BWO hatches, and the opportunity to watch spawning trout in the closed spawning areas combine to make a great day on the water.

Favorite flies now include slim worm patterns, WD-40s, flashback Pheasant Tails, eggs, and medium-sized streamers. If a hatch occurs, match it.


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Other Montana Waters

Missouri River

Updated March 10

The "Land of the Giants" section below Hauser Dam is now ready to rock for the year and is starting to get crowded on weekends. We'll be fishing here both on foot and in Walter's new jet boat on at least a weekly basis through mid-May. Right now, egg patterns, pink scuds, pink mayfly nymphs, and midge/BWO nymph crossovers like WD-40s are the hot tickets, but as the water begins to warm streamers can also bring some action.

Below Holter isn't quite as hot right now, but it's a good bet too. The same flies are good choices, and you have a better chance of seeing pods of rising fish eating midges and BWO.


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