Fishing Around Bozeman This Week
It looks like the weather might be starting to change a little next week. The next several days however look pretty good still. Here is a short list of our favorite choices for the next few days.
The first choice probably has to be The Lower Madison. The stretch between Beartrap Canyon and Cobblestone will be a great choice. It doesn’t look like it’s going to get cold enough to get the river slushy at all. It will be cold enough to push the majority of fish back into their Winter spots. Those slow, deep holes along the weed beds or mid river, some of the deep banks and boulder gardens around Beartrap. Those types of spots are good place to start anyway. A person will probably still be able to catch a couple of fish on Crawdads and Sculpins, but going to a long leader, a couple of split shot, your favorite Pink Scud or Sow Bug and a Midge Pupa will probably be the more productive program.
Second on the list right now is probably The Yellowstone around Paradise Valley. Deep runs like this will have plenty of fish in them right now. This type of slower than average stretch will have a good concintration of Midges hatching at times to provide a little hope for some dry fly action. The majority of action will more likely come from a Goldenstone Nymph, San Juan Worm or Midge Pupa. Once the cold really sets in, most of these slower sections in the valley will freeze up or become too dangerous to get to. A little more windsheild time gets you to Corwin Springs. This stays productive even later into the Winter but is a good time even now.
Third on the list is The Upper Madison. The water around Reynolds and $3 Bridge stays productive all Winter as well, but why not get over there before the roads get too sketchy. This water can produce fish with a number of programs now. There can and will be some sporadic Midge hatches that will get fish feeding on the surface throughout the day, they will eat a Streamer a little more often than in most places, tailwater patterns like a Ray Charles will have moments of glory, Midge Pupas from size 22 to 14 will work up there, even a good old Red Copper John will produce fish. Stay in those suptle little slow spots behind the boulders and along the bank, especially if you are the first person along that bank for the day. Surprisingly big Trout will hang right on the bank next to the trail until someone almost steps on them.
Last on the list is the Gallatin River in the valley. This section of the Gallatin gets hard to get around once the ice starts to form and produces big jams. Plus this portion will get a little slushy when the Canyon water is ice free. Staying in the deep holes is important here. The slower and deeper the better. A Stonefly Nymph combined with a little Mayfly Nymph will usually suffice down here. Sometimes they may want a San Juan or an Egg or Maybe a certain Midge, but usually not too picky when you get into the right hole.
If you need some advise on where to go or what to use come in and see us at our Bozeman Fly Shop and we can steer you in the wrong direction. Have fun and try not to go swimming.