Clark Fork River
The Clark Fork River is a freestone river with high scenic mountains, coniferous forests, and spectacular cliffside rock formations. It is simply beautiful. The river has lots of colorful cutthroat, rainbow, and brown trout which fight harder than any other trout in Montana. Above all the Clark Fork is a dry fly river throughout most of the fishing season. Early March and April brings blue-winged olives along with the one inch long sqwala stone flies which are the first major trout food each year. Next come the golden stones, caddis, green drakes, gray drakes, and pale morning duns. Summer provides great hopper fishing for larger trout and fall brings in more blue-winged olives and the large copper colored one inch fall caddis. This is also the time to catch trophy sized trout with streamers. The Clark Fork is visited by less fishermen than any other river in the state and good fishing, solitude with beauty await you.
The Bitterroot river is a north flowing freestone river with gin clear water, lots of cottonwoods and pines on the flats which border the banks and a fish population of 4000 trout per mile. It is full of large cutthroat, trophy sized browns and large rainbows. It also is a dry fly river. Early spring brings a record squala stone hatch along with blue winged olives and midge hatches. Summers provide variety of possibilities for surface fishing. Pale morning duns, green drakes, gray drakes, brown drakes, and golden stones all come in abundance in the summer month for great dry fly action. Hopper begin in mid July and last into late September. Trophy sized trout can be caught with streamers especially in this river. Blue-winged olives return in the fall and fall October caddis show up as well. River access is primarily by raft or drift boats.
Considered one of the finest tail water trout fishery in the country. Trout up to 28 inches are often caught with streamers and large wet flies. The average rainbow trout is 17 inches and the brown trout are usually larger. It is fished heavily with tiny nymphs and tiny dries in the spring and larger dry fly action comes into play as summer arrives. The river harbors a whopping 5500 trout per mile with many in the larger 20 inch plus sizes. In the spring it is known for it’s dense hatches of midges, spectacular hatches of tricorythodes, caddis clouds, and then hopper fishing from the banks in the summer months. The river is bordered by extensive willows, hay meadows, and low rolling hills with sagebrush with juniper trees. The Missouri is a favorite river for catching huge brown trout with streamers in October and November. Blue-winged olives show up in the fall as well. The fish are wild hard fighters and provides a considerable challenge and a lot of fun for the average trout angler.
The Flathead River, located in northwestern Montana, is a unique crystal clear waterway that drains south from the glacial ice of Glacier National Park, north from the Bob Marshall Wilderness and west from the lower park boundary. It’s upper reaches are divided into the north, south and west fork rivers which unite into one major river near Hungry Horse. Together the three divisions form the main Flathead River which empties into Flathead Lake near Big Fork. The super cold clear water provides an abundance of west slope cutthroat, and rainbow trout from 12 to 20 inches in a river system with a sparse food supply. The fish feed readily and 20 to 30 fish days are common. There are larger protected Bull Trout in the river as well. In the warmer months most fish are caught on surface dry flies using caddis, stonefly, and large attractor patterns. Hopper season comes in July and continues through August. Many anglers come to visit the park and experience the exceptional scenery from a boat and flyrod. Experiencing the Flathead River is definately a bucket list item for the flyfisher.