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Big Hole River 197 Beaverhead River 641

Fishing on the Missouri was tough but we managed to get some really nice ones. On the first day Jim caught four big browns back to back on a hopper pattern. Yesterday they wouldn’t look at a hopper except for a few small ones. After trying some different hopper patterns for quite some time we switched to a Big Hole pattern, namely a yuk bug with a pt dropper. This got some results and produced a big brown with shoulders on him. As far as top water action, there is very little happening up there. No tricos and just a few pseudos and very few hoppers along the banks which surprised me with all that hot weather. Mid day the air temp. got into the ninety’s . Of all the fish we caught up there (and there wasn’t that many) we only caught one rainbow and all the rest were browns. In the past one would catch mostly bows and an occasional brown. With cooler weather approaching the fishing will improve dramatically and I won’t hesitate going back there.

As of noon today the Big Hole River from the headwaters to Dickie Bridge will be closed to fishing. The remaining 102 miles from Dickie Bridge to the confluence with the Jefferson will remain open with voluntary morning fishing only on hot days. Water temp. is no longer a problem. Yesterday the highest the temp. got was 64 at the Melrose station and this morning it is 55.

I ran into a nonresident angler on the Missouri who told us that you could get a big fine if you fished past noon on the Big Hole. I tried to tell him that this was a voluntary situation and no fines would be imposed. He wasn’t having any part of it even after I told him I live, guide and own a fly shop on the Big Hole. He said that sales clerk at The Sportsmen Warehouse in Missoula told him that and as far as he was concerned it was gospel. I didn’t waste any more breath telling him any different. Later I told Jim that I’m sure glad I’m not guiding that guy as I don’t think he is very coachable. Jim said he told the guy to go to the Big Horn.

Dry fly fishing on the Big Hole remains excellent with the tricos starting around ten a.m.


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