Saturday, June 3, 2017

June has been off to a high water start. The Big Hole is almost at flood stage around Melrose. We would not suggest floating in the Melrose area due to high flows right now. Our Big Hole River guides have been fishing the upper Big Hole. Above the Wise River the Big Hole has 2 feet of clarity on the banks. We have been successful with dead drifting streamers, worms and stone fly nymphs. This is a good time to get all of your gear ready for the Salmonfly Hatch. We are getting close to the hatch and we will keep you posted once we see the bugs. We are hoping the river drops before the bugs start to hatch. The first area that we will see the Salmonflies will be around the Glen Access site.

Mark that calendar for June 10th. Our 2nd Annual Salmonfly Fest will be from 5pm – 9pm on June 10th.  We have music from Smokestack and the Foothill Furry. We have food from Brunchies, and Rollin Bites brick oven Pizza. Beaverhead Brewery will be here, and Rattlesnake Distillery. We have giveaways and raffle items from Patagonia, Winston Rods, Simms Fishing Products, Dirty Water Fly Company, Bauer Reels, Scientific Anglers and much more. 

Sunrise Fly Shop Client Corky with a Big Hole River brown trout

Recommended Flies: #10 Purple Haze; #12 X Caddis; #10 Mr. Beam; #10 Skwala Stone; #10 Pat’s Stone Olive/Brown; #8 San Juan Worm; #12 Pheasant Tail; #12 Caddis Pupa; #6 J.J. Special; #4 Smokin’ Mirrors; #4Mr. Creepo


Sunday, March 26, 2017

The massive ice jams and flooding events that took place last week are all behind us on the Big Hole. You will still see large ice chunks the size of small VW’s pushed up over the banks of the upper Big Hole. The entire river is flowing ice free at this point and the river is starting to come into shape. Clarity is improving daily and water temperatures should start climbing this week to activate the fish throughout the day as the water flows continue to drop. We had some Big Hole River guides out today scouting the river and they had some success in very specific locations. It should be a good week on the Big Hole and it is time to start thinking about the Skwala hatch. We will keep you posted on when the hatch starts and it’s movement on the lower Big Hole. As for now we would stay subsurface with Skwalla nymphs, San Juan Worms and slow moving streamers. Some Spring specials are still available. Click here for information on our Spring Special.

Sunrise fly Shop guide Rick Rossi with a beautiful brown caught today on the Big Hole River

Monday, March 13, 2017

It is that time of year again and we are looking forward to a great season. A few big Hole River guides got out last Friday and had a good day fishing. This was our first float of the season and the Big Hole is in good shape for mid March. You will find some shelf ice around some banks but it is not bad below Melrose. We have been floating below Melrose and the midges are about all the top water action you will have right now. Streamers and nymphs got all the fish to the boat for us. Clients are coming in tomorrow so we will be updating our reports now regularly. Don’t forget to check out our Spring Special. We are anticipating a great Skwala hatch if water flows stay favorable this spring. The snowpack in the Big Hole is over 100% and the the prediction is for above average precipitation for the months of April, May and June according to the Climate Prediction Center. It is gearing up to be a fine water year in Southwest Montana.


Cory with a nice Brown caught a few days ago below Melrose

Monday, October 3, 2016

Fall is here and we just had a blast of rain in the valley and snow in the high country. Foliage is at it’s peak on the Big Hole right now. Fishing has been very good lately. You will find hatches of Blue Winged Olives and Slate Drakes on the river. Streamers have been working well and the nymphing has been solid. Look for the flows to rise with this Fall storm we are having. The Brown trout are staging to spawn so please do not walk on spawning beds or fish over the spawning areas. We have a large Fall sale going on in the shop: 20% – 40% Off clothing. Please stop in or give us a call if you are interested.

The Wares with a 20 inch brown on their 20th wedding anniversary!

Recommended Flies: #16 Split Wing BWO : #16 BWO Cripple #14 Purple Craze; #14 Comparadun Yellow; #12 Bloom’s Caddis; #12 Purple Chubby; #14 Para Wolf; #14 Psycho Mayfly; #12 Prince Nymph; #10 Pat’s Stone; #14 Pearl Lightning Bug; #14 Red Copper John; #18 Silver Lightning Bug #16 Micro Mayfly;  4 Mini Loop Sculpin; #8 Trevors Sculpin

Monday, September 19, 2016

Fishing has remained pretty good on the Big Hole. The Big Hole just opened from Maiden Rock down to Notch Bottom. The river is moving into Fall mode and the brown trout are eating very well. We have been catching many large brown trout lately on the Big Hole River. You will find hatches of Blue Winged Olives, and Slate Drakes. Nymphing has been consistent with Pat’s Stone’s #10 olive/brown, or black. #18 Micro Mayflies, #18 silver lightning bugs, #18 green machines, and #16 pheasant tails. Streamer fishing has been fantastic. We have been catching them in the shallow riffles and deeper tail outs lately. It’s time to enjoy the Fall fishing on the Big Hole.

The Big Hole River is open without any restrictions from Dickey Bridge down to Notch BottomHere is a map to help you with the closures

Client Colleen with a Big Hole beauty this week

Recommended Flies: #16 Split Wing BWO : #16 BWO Cripple #14 Purple Craze; #14 Comparadun Yellow; #12 Bloom’s Caddis; #12 Purple Chubby; #14 Para Wolf; #14 Psycho Mayfly; #12 Prince Nymph; #10 Pat’s Stone; #14 Pearl Lightning Bug; #14 Red Copper John; #18 Silver Lightning Bug #16 Micro Mayfly;  4 Mini Loop Sculpin; #8 Trevors Sculpin

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Mid Summer fishing has been solid on the Big Hole River. You will need a variety of flies since one day they are keyed into a certain bug and the next day they want something completely different. You will find some PMD’s, caddis, and sallies on the water. We are about to move into Trico season on the Big Hole so be ready to have some Trico’s with you on the water. Dry flies of choice have been #12 Chubby chernobyl’s; #16 Para wolf’s; #16 comparaduns; #16 PMX’s. Our nymphs of choice have been changing daily. I would have some streamers; Pat’s stone’s; #16 super flash pheasant tail’s; #16 psycho mayflies; #16 Batman nymphs. We have no closures to report to you. Warm weather is in the forecast so please pay attention to water temperatures. If trout get stressed keep em’ wet.

Sunrise Guide Shawn Bechtol getting clients on some nice Big Hole trout

Recommended Flies: #14 Purple Craze; #14 Comparadun Yellow; #12 Bloom’s Caddis; #12 Purple Chubby; #14 Para Wolf; #14 Psycho Mayfly; #12 Prince Nymph; #10 Pat’s Stone; #14 Pearl Lightning Bug; #14 Red Copper John; 4 Mini Loop Sculpin; #6 Sculpzilla

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The Big Hole has had an increase of flow due to widespread rain. The river has remained running clear. We have had hatches of PMD’s, Caddis and drakes. Fishing was tough during the flow increase but today that should improve with the dropping water conditions. More good news to announce the Hoot Owl closures are off the upper Big Hole but the lower Big Hole River below Notch Bottom is still under Hoot Owl closure after 2:00pm. We look forward to seeing everyone at the Big Hole River Day this Saturday in Melrose. We will be putting on the annual casting competitions. Come join the fun and we have great prizes for the competition. Here is a link to see a map of the Hoot Owl Closure

Recommended Flies: #14 Purple Craze; #14 Comparadun Yellow; #12 Bloom’s Caddis; #12 Purple Chubby; #14 Para Wolf; #14 Psycho Mayfly; #12 Prince Nymph; #10 Pat’s Stone; #14 Pearl Lightning Bug; #14 Red Copper John; 4 Mini Loop Sculpin; #6 Sculpzilla

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Fishing has been pretty good on the Big Hole lately. You will find hatches of PMD’s, Yellow Sallies, Caddis, and nocturnal stones. Our best dry fly fishing is from around daylight until 11:00 am. If you find cloud cover dry fly fishing will remain good in the afternoon. Please pay attention to water temperatures. If it remains hot the afternoon fishing will slow down and in order to protect the fishery carry a thermometer to make sure water temperatures are safe. Streamer fishing with a small bead head nymph trailed behind it is working very well in the shallow riffles.

We do have some Hoot Owl closures to inform you all about. From Saginaw Bridge near Wisdom to Dickey Bridge is closed from 2:00pm tilll midnight and from Notch Bottom to the confluence with the Beaverhead is closed from 2:00pm till midnight. From Dickey Bridge to Notch bottom is open 24 hrs a day for fishing. Here is a helpful link for the Hoot owl Closures.

Dennis Nelson with a great 22 inch Brown caught in the Maiden Rock Canyon

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Now that the Salmon Flies are pretty well wrapped up, the fish had moved on to Golden Stones, PMDs, Drakes and Caddis.  You can expect to see fish up eating the Mayflies in the morning while the light is still low.  As the sunlight gets more intense, we have been seeing the fish become less interested in the dries, and more interested in nymphs such as Pat’s Rubber Legs, Copper Johns, Lightning Bugs, and Pheasant Tails.  Then, in the last few hours of daylight, the caddis are coming off and the fish become interested in dries again.

Recommended Flies: #12 Purple Craze; #12 Comparadun Yellow; #12 Copper Cripple; #14 Bloom’s Caddis; #10 Chubby UV; #10 Pat’s Stone; #12 Pearl Lightning Bug; #12 Red Copper John; #14 Psycho May brown; #12 Pheasant Tail; McCunnes Sculpin; Mini Look Sculpin; #6 Sparkle Minnow

Thursday, June 16, 2016

The fishing remains lights out on the Big Hole. We have several hatches to discuss on this report. You will find Golden Stones, PMD’s, Green Drakes, and Caddis from Jerry Creek all the way down to the lower end of the Big Hole. If you are still wanting to chase some Salmonflies head up river. We still have Salmonflies from Sportsman’s down to the Jerry Creek area. Along with Salmonflies on the upper river you will find PMD’s, Green Drakes, and Caddis. Flows have bumped a little bit due to some overnight rain. This will not put the fishing off. Clarity remains around 3 feet on the river. We have also had stellar streamer fishing lately. In the fast shallow riffles we have been fishing mini loop sculpins, #4 Lil’ Kim copper, and #6 sparkle minnows.

Recommended Flies: #8 Chubby Chernobyl; #12 Purple Haze; #12 Film Critic; #14 Comparadun; #14 Cripple Copper; #12 Pearl Lightning Bug; #12 Red Copper John; #8 Pat’s Stone Black; #4 Lil’ Kim; #4 Sculpzilla; #6 Sparkle Minnow; #6 Mini Loop Sculpin

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