It is hard to believe that August is coming to an end soon. Southwest Montana fishing has been heating up. We have had hot and dry weather, which has really gotten the hopper fishing on track. We are looking forward to a September filled with exciting hopper fishing on the Big Hole, Beaverhead and Jefferson River. I have been on all three rivers this week. We still have Spruce Moth’s on the Big Hole River; the upper Beaverhead has been fishing excellent on PMD nymphs with hopper and Crane Fly fishing on the surface. The Jefferson River has been streaky on the hopper bite. Some days they have been crushing the hopper and other days the Jefferson River can be humbling. Fall fishing is right around the corner. Start planning your Fall fishing trip now!
August terrestrial hatches on the Big Hole are in full swing. We currently have Spruce Moth’s, hoppers, and flying ants. Dry fly fishing doesn’t get better than this, brown’s eating Spruce Moth’s and hoppers in skinny water. We have been fishing the Big Hole from Jerry Creek all the way to Notch bottom. You will find the Spruce Moth’s from Jerry Creek down to Maiden Rock. The Spruce Moth’s are thick and the trout are lined up to eat them. Below Melrose it has been a hopper/nocturnal stone fly game on the surface. August flows are great right now. We are over 600cfs in Melrose right now. Read more about the Spruce Moth Hatch here.
A Ro Skiff was pinned on a rock in the Maiden Rock Canyon. The boat was stollen from the river before the owner could recover it. If you have any information on this boat pleasecontact our shop.
August is living up to our predicted expectations, big fish on dry flies. This 28 inch 9lb. brown was taken on a dry fly on the Big Hole River! This image sums up the kind of fishing right now on the Big Hole. We have been fishing small attractor patterns in the morning and than hoppers and Chernobyl’s in the afternoons. The current weather pattern has been favorable for good fishing. We have had sunny cool mornings with overcast afternoons lately. It is prime time on Southwest Montana Rivers; get out here while the catching is hot.
Many people come to Southwest Montana to fish the famed Salmonfly hatch in June on the Big Hole River and the Madison River. Besides the Salmon Fly hatch, the rivers of Southwest Montana have other great Stonefly hatches. One in particular that is worth the trip to Montana is the Nocturnal Stonefly hatch.
Nocturnal Stoneflies are found on most freestone river is Southwest Montana. In mid July after most of the Golden Stoneflies are gone the Big Hole River has a fabulous nocturnal Stonefly hatch. As with most stoneflies, the males are much smaller than the females, and in this case the male Nocturnal Stone does not have the ability to fly. This is part of the reason why you rarely see these flies buzzing around during the day like you will with a Golden Stone or Salmon Fly. Similar to other stoneflies the nocturnal stonefly crawls onto dry rocks to sheds their exoskeleton and become an adult fly. The best way to know if these flies are hatching is to look at dry rocks along the banks of the river to see if there are any stonefly shucks stuck to the rocks.
The Best Time to Fish The Nocturnal Stoneyfly Hatch on the Big Hole River
The best time to fish the nocturnal stonefly hatch is in the early morning hours, or in the late evenings. I believe the best dry fly fishing is in the early morning hours before the sun hits the water. One section of river in Southwest Montana that has a wonderful nocturnal stonefly hatch is the Dewey canyon of the Big Hole River. Mid July is the time period that the hatch seems to be the best.
A Winston rod was brought into the shop tonight. It was found at the big rock between Melrose and Brownes Bridge that has been sucking boats this year on the Big Hole River. If you have lost a Winston Rod please call the Sunrise Fly Shop to identify it. Another honest angler with a rod that wants to get back to it’s original owner.