Salmon Flies are Out! – Fins and Feathers Bozeman
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Salmon Flies are Out!

O.K., I’m sure someone out in cyberland is saying to themselves, “I hope I find a good Salmon Fly blog.” Well here is a less than climatic version of a good blog. If you haven’t heard, the Salmon Flies are out! Most of us have seen the pictures of 100 boats on a section of the Big Hole, (100 boats is a slight exaggeration but not a huge one). I guess the purpose of those pictures is to show that solitude on certain stretches of river during certain hatches at certain times of year can be a challenge. I think most of us feel the chance of catching a nice trout on the first large dry fly of the season is worth the probability of seeing a few other people on the river. No one can discount the excitement we have when you catch the hatch just right. A lot has to come together in order to have an other than frustrating day during this hatch. The fish have to see a few of the bugs but not be so many they can’t eat another bite, it usually takes a couple of warm days to get them moving but that usually just makes sure the water is just a little dirtier than optimal, then throw in the crowd factor and you have the chance for a frustrating day. If you hit it right you feel like a rock star, and you dream about another Salmon Fly hatch like that for years befor you catch it like that again. The other side of the coin sounds like this,” I always go the opposite direction when I hear the big bugs are out”. There is a lot of merit to that statement as well. A person can go where they heard the bugs were last weekend, and they can do just as well as the person who was there the weekend of a billion people. I guess the gist of this blog is to explain the little contrast between the two schools of thought when it comes to the Salmon Fly hatch. None the less the Salmon Flies have just started on the Upper Madison. The river is coming down and clearing well. You’ll probably be able to beat the crowds befor this weekend for a little bonus, but maybe ask the shuttle driver how many of your closest friends will be on that stretch with you before you commit to a certain float if you need to be by yourself. Any way you choose to look at it, just go fishing, if you want to throw out a large orange dry fly you will probably catch a trout or two. I can probably promise you won’t catch a thing if you’re sitting around saying: “It’s too crowded during the Salmon Flies, I would much rather sit around and complain about all the people having fun instead”.

– Jim Carter