The Big Hole has bounced back from the last recent bump in flows. We have 2 feet of visibility, dropping water and the fish are looking up for Skwalas. Our best dry fly fishing has been from Maiden Rock all the way to Notch Bottom. Look for your best dry fly action to be from 1:00 to 6:00pm. This week will be prime time for the Big Hole Skwala hatch. Slow moving streamers have also been getting it done for us. The best streamers of choice have been Coffee buggers, Natural Slap and tickles and Yellow/black beldars.
Image of a Big Hole River Skwala
The Beaverhead River has been fishing ok as of lately. Remember the river is closed from the Dam to Pipe Organ until the 3rd Saturday in May. We have had some dry fly fishing on the overcast days with Blue winged Olives. Sow bugs under an indicator with a blue wing nymph has been keeping our rods bent. Below Grasshopper we have been able to move some nice fish on streamers.
Client Alan Elm with a nice 20 inch brown on the Beaverhead.
We are currently having some of the best streamer fishing we have seen in years for huge browns on the upper Big Hole. It has been flat out amazing streamer fishing this week. Large yellow streamers stripped fast off the banks has been getting the large Big Hole Browns attention. We have been floating anywhere from Fishtrap all the way to Jerry Creek. I had a solid report from Divide to Melrose yesterday on streamers. Some Mother’s Day Caddis are around and once we get a warm sunny day the caddis will pop hard. These overcast cloudy days are keeping the fish interested in streamers. With 2 feet of visibility the river is in great shape for mid May.
One of the Many large browns caught this week on the Big Hole River fishing in Southwest Montana
Southwest Montana is starting to feel like winter is turning the corner. Our valley temperatures have been above freezing this week and man does it feel good. Don’t let this fool you that the fishing is picking up and we are out there fishing the Big Hole. The Melrose guage remains reading ICE and all guages for that matter are not reading flow on the river except the Maiden Rock guage. The above freezing day time highs has started to break the ice from the lower reaches of the Big Hole. It will remain mild through tomorrow and then it looks like we will get blasted with another winter storm on Monday and Tuesday. Our Montana snowpack and the Big Hole snowpack is still increasing from the past week storms. We are currently at 115% of normal snowfall and the snowpack has a snow/water content of 140% of normal. It’s almost time to dust off your waders and get your drift boat ready for the Spring fishing season on the Big Hole and Beaverhead rivers. Our Big Hole River fishing guides will keep you posted as conditions improve and we start to get on our home waters.
Our season officially wrapped up October 26th. We had one of the best fall fishing seasons on the Big Hole that we can remember in many years. Increased flows due to some big snow storms in the mountains at the end of September set us up for an excellent fall. We had great streamer fishing with the rising flow from the snow storms. Here are some of the highlight photos from the fall on the Big Hole and Beaverhead rivers. We will be in touch with more to come this off season.
23 inch brown from this past October on the Big Hole River
Monster Beaverhead Rainbow from this past October
The Montana snowpack remains above average and the Big Hole snowpack continues to climb. Currently the Big Hole snowpack has a snow/water content of 132% and a total precipitation of 106% of normal for this date in time. With these numbers it is shaping up to be an excellent July and August on the Big Hole and Beaverhead Rivers. Our Big Hole River guides are tying flies and gearing up for the Spring Skwala hatch, which hits the Big Hole in early April.
Our Big Hole river fly shop is carrying many new products this year. We have new gear from Patagonia, Simms, Scott Fly Rods and Scientific Anglers. One of the products that we are excited about is the new SharkWave Fly line from Scientific Anglers. This product has not hit the market yet so we have not reviewed it. We will be receiving the Shark Wave fly line on April 1st in our Big Hole River fly shop.
The SharkWave fly line combines the best elements of Scientific Anglers textured line technologies and the traditional smooth fly lines. The textured Sharkskin fly lines came out in 2007 and brought fly line technology to the industry that we had never seen before. The Sharkskin fly line has increased surface area to allow the line to sit higher in the water, and with less drag. The micro-textured surface traps air, which allows increased shootability and flotation while decreasing friction. After the Sharksin fly line Scientific Anglers came out with the Mastery Textured series fly lines. These lines took the great qualities of the Sharkskin line and combined it with a more easy feel of traditional, smooth fly lines, which results in a textured line that is smoother to the touch than Sharkskin.
Scientific Anglers now has taken the Textured Series fly lines and combined the qualities of the Sharkskin fly line to come up with the first triple textured fly lines called the SharkWave fly line. The SharkWave is also the first triple colored fly line in the industry. This fly line should have a friction free feel with unparalleled floatation. We will have feed back in April on this fly line when our Big Hole River guides test it out. It sounds like the ultimate trout line for Southwest Montana.
Fishing season is almost here. The river-ice on the Big Hole is starting to recede and the river is starting to open up. The majority of the river is still under ice, but sections of the lower river are already starting to flow. It won’t be too much longer and we’ll be able to start fishing.
The winter snowpack is above 120% of average, and things are looking great as we get ready to start the 2014 season. If you haven’t booked your 2014 fly fishing vacation with Sunrise Fly Shop yet, call and reserve your dates soon.
The Sunrise Fly Shop will be opening its doors for the 2014 season on Monday March 31st
Southwest Montana and the Big Hole Valley continues to be in a favorable weather pattern for snowfall. The Big Hole and Beaverhead drainage is now reaching 98% snowpack for this date in time. The snowpack has a snow/water equivalency of 121%, which is excellent for our Southwest Montana rivers.
Great news for Sunrise Fly Shop in the fly fishing industry. We are now working with the #1 booking agent in the fly fishing world. Yellow Dog Fly Fishing Adventures has stamped Sunrise Fly Shop as one of their domestic destinations. You will find our listing with Yellow Dog Fly Fishing Adventures in their 2014 catalog and on the Yellow Dog website. The Sunrise Fly Shop Yellow Dog all inclusive package includes lodging at the Great Water Inn and your finest fly fishing guides at the Sunrise Fly Shop.
Cabin fever is definitely setting in for us here in Southwest Montana. Here is a nice photo to get you excited for Spring fishing on the Big Hole River, which is coming soon. This brown was caught last May on the Big Hole River in the East Bank section of the river. In the month of May you will find excellent streamer fishing for large aggressive brown trout and the famous Mother’s Day Caddis hatch.
It’s time to start thinking about the Big Hole River Spring fishing special. This is our 5th year in a row running this great Spring discount. The Big Hole River has unmatched dry fly fishing in April and early May. The Big Hole River Skwala hatch gets the large browns looking up to eat dry flies. If you are willing to deal with cooler weather and some possible snow showers you can be rewarded with some excellent top water fishing this Spring. We also have hatches of Blue Winged Olives in the Spring. You will find solitude in the Spring on the Big Hole River and aggressive fish wanting to shake the winter off and eat some large stoneflies. The package rate we are offering includes your lodging and guided fishing based on double occupancy. The lodging is right next to our fly shop at the Sportsman Motel in Melrose. All of your dining and drinking needs can be satisfied at the HItchin’ Post right next to our Big Hole River fly shop. Don’t let the spring pass you by without our Big Hole River guides showing you the best spring trout fishing you have experienced.
We just finished up a bitter cold snap here in Southwest Montana. We had ten days of sub zero temperatures, some of the lowest reading we had were -30 degrees. Right now we are back on average temperatures and it is currently snowing in the high country. We have a great start to the Montana Snowpack and the Big Hole River snowpack. The mountains in the Big Hole watershed and Beaverhead watershed are reading about 130% of normal for this date in time. We are pleased with good start to our snowpack as the first day of the official winter season isn’t until December 21st.
It looks like we are going to have a cold winter with above average snowpack according the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Here is a link to an informative article on the winter outlook. 2013 will be wrapping up here shortly and we are looking forward to great Big Hole River spring fishing come April.
As we move into August we have cooler water temperatures and feisty trout on the Big Hole River. Flows are below average for this time of year but we are enjoying great dry fly fishing. Trico’s in the morning, with hopper and ant fishing in the afternoons. This is the time of year that we hunt large browns in skinny water on the Big Hole River. The Beaverhead River has been fishing well. We are starting to do well with hoppers and the PMD fishing continues to produce nice fish on the upper Beaverhead.
Client Frank Szewczyk caught these two great Big Hole Browns while he fished with us recently.