Big Hole River Fishing Report – Salmonfly Hatch Update

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Big Hole River Fishing Report

The Salmonfly Hatch has started below Melrose. Our guides had some of the best fishing of their careers yesterday below Melrose. I’m sure everyone has heard the saying, “should have been here yesterday.” Don’t worry if you weren’t you haven’t missed the hatch above Melrose. We have spotted the Salmonflies below Melrose but stretches above Melrose have not had adult Salmonflies yet. With this cooler weather and increase in river flows the hatch will take a pause until our next warm up. Looks like mid to late week it will be game on! Salmonfly nymphs are staged up near the banks in the Maiden Rock canyon waiting to hatch. You will want to be here in the next 10 days to enjoy the Salmonfly hatch.

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#Flutter Bug
#Rogue Salmonfly
#6 Chubby Norman
#4 Pat’s Stone (Orange/Brown)
#6 Yuk Bug
#8 Chubby Chernobyl (UV) (Gold) (Purple)
#4 Water Walker

#8 Chubby Peanut
#6 Henry’s Fork Stone

[/eye_text][/eye_column][eye_column data_width=”5″][eye_image align=”right” caption=”Sunrise Guide Andy Barkley with a nice one from a few days ago “]2526|×816.jpg|large[/eye_image][/eye_column][/eye_row][eye_row data_width=”container” data_padding_row=”50px,15px,0,15px” data_margin_row=”0,0″ data_equal_height=”true”][eye_column data_width=”4″][eye_image align=”right” caption=”Trout are keyed into the Salmonfly nymphs in the Maiden Rock Canyon”]2525|×768.jpeg|large[/eye_image][/eye_column][eye_column data_width=”4″][eye_image align=”right” caption=”Essentail Gear Raffle #11 Winston Alpha + 6 weight | Abel Vaya 5/6 | Simms Nippers | Call to purchase your slots 406-835-3474″]2519|×798.jpg|large[/eye_image][/eye_column][eye_column data_width=”4″][eye_image align=”right” caption=”Plenty of Salmonflies to choose from online ” link=””]2514|×1024.jpg|large[/eye_image][/eye_column][/eye_row]

Fish On! In the Big Hole River

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Flows on the Big Hole are starting to come up daily due to some snowmelt but not enough to put the fishing down. Fishing has been pretty darn good lately even with the slight bump in flows. Clarity remains around 4 feet. We have some skwalas around and March Brown mayflies. Our Big Hole River guides have been fishing on the upper Big Hole, Canyon stretches and the lower Big Hole. All three sections of the Big Hole has been fishing well. Water temperatures are hitting the magic number of 50 degrees lately, which has gotten the streamer junkies excited. We have done well on black, olive, and tan streamers. As we all know, conditions this time of year can change quick. Give us a call for up to date information. 406-835-3474.

Book your Spring Special fishing package today! 

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Recommended Flies: #10 Water Walker Olive; #8 Mr. Beam; #12 Parachute Adam’s; #8 T.J. Hooker; #8 Pat’s Stone; #12 Prince Nymph; #10 Squirmy Worm; #8 San Juan Worm Pink/Red #6 Smokin’ Mirrors Black; #6 Flash Minnow Yellow; #6 She Deamon;  Sex Dungeon Black/Yellow/White


The flows on the upper Big Hole are stable and the flow around Melrose are on a slight increase today.

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The flows on the upper Big Hole are stable and the flow around Melrose are on a slight increase today. We have been fishing on the stretches above the Wise River on the Big Hole and around Melrose. Clarity is around 3 feet and the fishing has been pretty good. We have had hatches of Mother’s Day Caddis on the stretches around Melrose and the upper Big Hole has had hatches of March Brown’s, gray drakes, and blue winged olives. We did an evening float below Melrose last night and streamer fishing was very good. On the upper river we have been fishing streamers, worms, and some gray drake dries in the back eddies. It should be a great weekend on the Big Hole coming up!

Sunrise Fly Shop Client Dustin with a Big Hole Brown from yesterday

Recommended Flies: #10 Gray Drake; #12 X Caddis; #8 Mr. Beam; #10 Olive Chubby; #8 Bullet Head Skwalla; #10 Pat’s Stone (Olive/Brown); #8 San Juan Worm; #6 Flash Minnow (Olive); #6 Smokin’ Mirrors (Black); #6 Sparkle Minnow; #4 Little Kim; #6 Screamer (Yellow) (Olive)


Fishing has been excellent lately on the Big Hole.

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Fishing has been excellent lately on the Big Hole. You will find hatches of Blue Winged Olives and Slate Drakes. Streamer fishing in the overcast weather has been fantastic. Nymphing in the tail outs of runs have also been very good. A large cottonwood tree has fallen about 1/3 of a mile above the Salmonfly take out in Melrose. Below is an image of one of our Big Hole River guides portaging around the tree. We have contacted FWP about the fallen tree. Hopefully it will be removed so you will not have to portage. Please be aware of this obstacle if you are floating above Melrose. 

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



Father’s Day Salmonfly Hatch Update

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When I got into my truck and came to work this morning I had to scrape off the frost on my windshield.  You don’t expect that on June 15th.  Reports were very good yesterday in the morning on Salmonflies and then the temperature dropped in the afternoon and the fishing tapered off.  We have had a very slow moving Big Hole River Salmonfly hatch due to the cool weather.  Look for the bugs to fly in the warmer afternoons.  It is going to stay cool and then warm up nicely in the middle of the week.  You may have to keep the droppers on below the Salmonflies and Chubby Chernobyl’s today and tomorrow.  We have been fishing the upper river and the canyon sections of the Big Hole.  Our Big Hole River guides were on late in the Dewey Canyon last night and did very well on dries.  Everything is continuing to fish well and look for the weekend crowd to taper off and it’s time to call in sick to work tomorrow and get on the Big Hole. 

Guide Chuck Page with a fabulous brown during the Big Hole  Salmonfly hatch


Big Hole River Montana Fishing Report

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The upper Big Hole River continues to drop and the fishing yesterday was stellar.  It should be another great day on the upper Big Hole. Clarity is around 2 feet up there and once you get above the Wise River and Deep Creek the volume of water decreases and your prospecting on the banks becomes very manageable at these high flows.  We have caddis hatching in the Melrose section but flows are rather high for any dry fly fishing. Streamers and San Juan worms has been producing the best fishing on the upper Big Hole River.  Flows at the Mudd Creek gauge continue to drop and the fishing will remain good up there until the next bump in flows.  Our Big Hole River guides continue to produce huge brown trout this spring.

Our Client Larry with a wonderful Big Hole Brown caught yesterday

Flies: #12 Elk Hair Caddis #12 CDC Caddis #10 Purple Haze #10 Rocky Mountain Mint #8 Mr. Beam; #10 Bullet Head Skwala; #8 Rogue River Skwala  #8 San Juan Worm; #10 Pat’s Stone Olive/Brown: #8 RL Stone; #6 J.J. Special #4 Coffey Bugger; #4 Bad Boy #4 Yellow Zonker