Top Water

Big Hole River 4170 cfs

Most of the action today was on top and it was quite good. There was a good deal of changing patterns but we got the fish to eat on most we tried. Salmon fly, golden, chernoble, stimos and the like.

Apparently I ruffled some feathers by telling the guy to take a walk and not to read my reports if he didn’t like them. I was even called a old crotchety transplant with an attitude or something like that. After being on the sticks for the past couple weeks every day in this heavy water I probably am. Others said their shadow would never again cross the door to my shop. Hey that’s what’s great about this free country. You don’t have to read my reports nor do you have to visit my shop.
Bottom line is I have been doing this report for quite some time now. I don’t get paid for it. I do it because most times it’s fun and I get many thanks from people who do stop in the shop and appreciate the info.


  1. yo. sorry fo trouble. i wernt trying to be ass. honest comment fo yo contruct.

    also note, i mentioned that i appreciate the reality that you make your living selling stuff.

    i have in the past (and will almost certainly in the future) bought crap from your store. i also read your blog. as you pointed out, you don’t push product much here, so when you do it’s noticeable.

    i didn’t expect you to post my comment, i just thought you’d like to know how those posts might come across to some readers.


  2. I was disappointed to read most of the comments that were posted. You provide up-to-date, knowledgeable, FREE reports and people still find something to complain about. I think they forget that you are a small business owner that has to pay the bills at the end of the day. God forbid you advertise a good product you’re selling…someone might actually find out about it! Next time I’m fishing the Big Hole you’ll get my business!


  3. I don’t know who you are but I really appreciate your updates on the Big Hole. I live in Oregon and managed to fish your river last summer. Wow, what beauty! Only going as far as Rock Creek this year but will definitely make it a destination in the future. Please keep the updates coming as it really helps those of us who can’t make it to your scenic neck of the woods dream all year about fishing there.


    ps. I think your posts are honest and sincere. If you pissed someone off then that’s their loss.

  4. Al, I might not agree with you politically all the time, but I find your candor in your blogs refreshing. I do and will visit your shop regardless of our differences in philosophy. I regard you as a huge asset to the Big Hole River community and surrounding areas and look forward to reading future Big Hole River Journal blogs and river updates.

  5. I enjoy your reports. I only hate it when politics (no joy) gets mixed with fishing (joy). It is your board. Say want you want, market what you want.

    Keep the fishing reports coming.

  6. john bradford

    Have enjoyed all of your reports, and if you use a piece of equipment that you really like, I enjoy hearing about it. Keep it coming!

  7. I appreciate the reports too! I am stuck in Pennsylvania and read everyday b/c I had the greatest trip of my life last summer out there. Everyday I wish I could be there! With that said, you guys that get to fish out there frequently – please don’t take it for granted… I am green with envy!!!! 🙂

  8. Ray Gillette

    people are too sensitive these days, just keep the reports coming. they are fun to read.

  9. First of all, all shops are trying to sell something. Some a little more than others. I remember when I first started fly fishing 20 yrs ago getting sold flies that were back logged in the shop that really weren’t the happening fly. I learned over time. Second, I agree with Al. He can do what the F*** he pleases. This is a free country. If you look at other reports around the region, you will see a few doing the same every now and then. It’s called making a living. Third, the Big Hole River doesn’t belong to anybody(Buttias, Anacondans, etc.), it belongs to everybody from anywhere. The river has long been there before any white man settled this area. Keep that in mind. With that in mind, enjoy this great summer, be thankful for the great snowpack, and always be the better person out on the river. Lead by example.

  10. When did everyone get so sensitive around here? I’m pretty young, but was there ever a time when you could say what you think and not get slammed by a dozen people who have nothing to do with the situation? You made your point perfectly, and didn’t insult or name call. The point being: you sell gear in your shop, so it shouldn’t be a federal crime for you to advertise a little on your website. Those who don’t like the report contents should just stop reading them, not complain about them to the author.

  11. I read your reports on a regular basis. I was there last week but didnt see you around. Keep up the great blog!

  12. If I remember correctly, you can take the heat, so please stay in the kitchen. I’ll be in the area in late july-early august. I’m sure I’ll stop by the shop with my buddies and buy some flies. Think we may see some spruce moths?

  13. those that read the ramblings of a tired lod boy should enjoy the fact that he has the energy to post these comments. I look forward too hear whats happening on my favorite river. Keep up the good work, sell a million fly lines. C ya in a few weeks for some spruce moth action

  14. Your shop,your blog carry on!!!!!!.Thanks for all the info you provide.

  15. You are doing a great job, keep it up.

  16. Write a book, or three.

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