Blog Posts In cfs

An August Cold Snap?

Not quite, but things sure have cooled off over the past two days.  Temps were in the nineties on Saturday and Sunday and then out of nowhere, a front moved through dropping Sunday night's temp by 60 degrees!  I slept with my windows open and woke up thinking I was camping.

Big Hole River Report:

Cooler nighttime temps and a cloudy day yesterday really brought the water temp down from an alarming 73 degrees to a refreshing 59.  Great news for a heat-stressed fish population.

The river is holding tough at 300 cfs, and hopefully 5 day forecast for afternoon showers does in fact bring moisture.

Temps should stay below the 90 degree mark this week and nights should drop into the 40's.  Add in a little rain and we are in fine shape!

As for the fishing?  It has been really good the past two days on tricos, hoppers, and caddis.

Bring On the Sunshine!

Big Hole River Fishing Report: 6/3/11 Weekend Outlook

  • Water Flow: 4,750 cfs
  • Water Temp: 46 degrees
  • Visibility: 10-12 inches
  • Fishing: good with streamers
  • Weather: snow today, sunny and 70's through the weekend

The new rain has brought the water level up, but fishing has still been good underneath. Early yesterday morning we had high winds, a furious hail storm, and then heavy rain on the upper Big Hole.  The rain showers continued through the day and into last night.  This morning it is snowing at the lodge!   The weather forecast is calling for sunny skies and temps in the 70's through Monday...bring it on!  The warm weather will definitely bring snow down and the river will most likely rise significantly by the beginning of next week.

The sunshine ought to bring on the caddis hatch and top water fishing could be very good this weekend.  Streamers have been working well in this nasty weather and should continue to do so in the mornings before you tie on a dry.  Good luck!

Happy Birthday to our chef, Lanette!  She is over in West Yellowstone celebrating with our trusty guide, Chuck Ravetta.  They plan to get out on the Madison today to bring in her new year.  Enjoy your next trip around the sun, Netter!

Late May Showers Bring July Flowers

Edit: (5/25/11)

  • water flow: 7,000 cfs!
  • water temp: 48 degrees
  • visibility: very muddy

Big Hole River Fishing Report 5/23/11:

The Big Hole fished well this weekend with dry fly action on Friday and streamer fishing through the weekend.  The weather was typical for spring in Montana with cold temps and frequent showers. It rained hard last night on the Wise River and I assume it did in the Big Hole Valley as well because the river jumped up overnight.
The rain throughout the week will continue to bring the water up, but the cool temperatures ought to keep the snow in the mountains and streamer fishing should be good.
The national weather service is issuing a flood watch for the Melrose area, and predicts that the river will rise by 2,000 cfs over the next few days.  Be careful getting in and out of the boat, and if you do find places to wade, tighten that wading belt!!

T.G.I.F. Big Hole River is clearing up

Friday Fishing Outlook: Big Hole River

  • Water Flow: 3,630 cfs
  • Water Temp: 49 degrees
  • Visibility: 18 inches
  • Weather: high 50's and chance of showers through the weekend
  • Fishing: Good
  • Flies:  streamers, march browns, caddis, stone fly nymphs

The Big Hole has been dropping steadily for the past three days and clearing as it falls.  The clouds and cool temps throughout the weekend will keep the river clear and fishing should be great.

Time to buy a Kayak, the Wise River is rockin' and rollin'

Big Hole Fishing Report 5/16/11

  • Water Flow: 4,540 cfs
  • Water Temp: 47 degrees
  • Visibility: muddy
  • Fishing: Streamer fishing has been cumbersome, but successful until today.  The water came up a lot last night and the Big Hole is very turbid today.
The spring weather that we have been missing out on will start this week and hopefully the weather will warm up enough to bring the mid-level snow out, essentially blowing out, and cleaning out, the watershed.  The weather predictions for the next two months indicate cooler days and cold nights which will bring the high snow out slowly and steadily throughout July and into August.    The Big Hole is going to be substantially bigger going into summer this year, but when the water clears fishing will be very good and fish will have more river to work with.

Big Hole Runoff, by the numbers

Big Hole River Fishing Report

  • Water Flow: 2,580 cfs
  • Water Temp: 53 degrees mid-day
  • visibility: 6 inches
  •  fishing: big shiny streamers

When I woke up this morning, NOAA was preaching doom and gloom and predicting an 8ft flood stage at Melrose by Saturday.  This would be a disaster for our Kid's Day on the Big Hole, but luckily the weather patterns have changed and so has the flood prediction.
Big Hole River Flood Prediction

Big Hole River weather report through the weekend

The weather will warm up, but not quite enough to bring the snow down with any consequence.  It looks like we are going to have high water for quite some time this year.  As I have been saying though, as long as it peaks and clears by mid June, fishing is going to be great regardless of the water level.

Big Hole River flow chart, cfs

Winter Weather Advisory: 1-2 feet of snow in the mountains

Better get the skis back out. Alex Ralston, former BHL guide, on Lost Trail Pass

Big Hole River Fishing Report 4/10/11

  • Water Flow: 2,830 cfs and rising
  • Water Temp: 42 degrees
  • Visibility: 6-8 inches
  • Fishing: Catch up on housework for a few days

Big Hole River Fishing Report 4/9/11

  • Water Flow: 2,330 cfs and rising
  • Water Temp: 45 degrees
  • Visibility: 6-8 inches
  • Fishing: Catch up on housework for a few days
  • Weather:

And So It Begins: Runoff 2011

Big Hole River Fishing Report:

  • Water Flow: 2,160 cfs (up 1,000 since last week)
  • Water Temp: 50 degrees mid-day
  • Visibility: very poor
  • Fishing:  not going to be great until things clear up a bit.  Smaller creeks will clear faster.

There must have been a small landslide into the Wise River last night because we have never seen the Wise so chocolate colored.  As a result, the Big Hole River below the confluence with the Wise River is very muddy.  Rainy weather is predicted for the next few days, warming into the high 60's by Thursday.

Unfortunately, the famed Mothers Day Caddis Hatch will most likely occur in water too dirty for the fish to see them this year.

We have entered the spring runoff and it's going to be pretty big water for a while.  The newspapers around the state are warning about rising water levels and probable flooding in several drainage systems.    The E. Gallatin near Bozeman is out of it's banks today and the snow in the Bridgers has not yet melted on the western slope.  According to the National Weather Service, "the Big Hole River near Melrose could crest between 9.6 and 10.3 feet, well above its flood stage of 6 feet.

I will keep you updated as the week goes on, but I recommend dusting off the golf clubs and leaving the rod in the garage for the next few days.

May 2-8 Fishing Outlook, Big Hole & Beaverhead

Big Hole Fishing Report

  • Water Flow: 909 cfs
  • Water Temp: 46
  • Visibility: clear
  • Fishing:  Good, on nymphs and streamers in the morning.  Skwala's and small dries in the slower water when the water warms up

Beaverhead Fishing Report

  • Water Flow: 424 cfs
  • Visibility: clear
  • Fishing: excellent on blue winged olives in the afternoon.  Nymphs in the AM, streamers in the cloudy weather.

Weather report:  Mostly sunny and in the high 40's to low 50's throughout the week.

Keep your eye out for the Mother's Day Caddis Hatch.......

Big Hole Fishing Report 4/29/11

Spring on the Big Hole River

Big Hole River Fishing Report
  • Water Flow:  1,140 cfs
  • Water Temp:  39 degrees
  • Visibility: 3 feet
  • Weather:  High 34 today, cloudy
  • Fishing:  Good!

Hatches:  The skwala hatch has been on the Big Hole for the past week. This is a shy, unusual aquatic insect in that the male doesn't have the ability to fly very much due to the shortness of its wings. Trout look for them falling off willow and tree branches.

Recommended Leader: 9ft 3x

Recommended Tippet: 3x

Best Techniques: A dry/dropper combo is working well on warmer days when the trout are more active and looking for the skwalla stone flies. Tie on a #10 skwalla dry fly and attach a #12 Kaufman mini stone fly to the bend of the hook. Since the skwalla fly doesn't fly very often, trout look for them near the bank and falling off willow branches and overhanging limbs.

Tip of the Week: Streamer fishing can be productive on warmer days in the winter. Vary the speed of your strip starting out with a long, smooth strip keeping the tip of the rod on the water. If this doesn't work, try a faster strip and/or pausing to allow the streamer to sink before continuing the fast strip. Also try a dead drift with several big mends in the line to allow your streamer to get deep. A 2X tippet is recommended for streamer fishing this time of year in a 9' length. If these techniques don't produce, tie a small #16 beadhead pheasant tail or flashback hare's ear on the bend of the streamer hook with a 5x tippet and strip very slowly through the deep pools.

7 day outlook: The weather forecast is calling for highs in the 40's with possible snow showers through the week.

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