The Big Hole has already surpassed its peak flows from 2021, and we are extremely grateful for the moisture and rising water levels. Not going to beat around the bush, the fishing has been a little difficult over the past few days. Between fast moving water, and decreasing clarity, it has not been easy to tease up the trout. Conditions look to be improving for now, with flows leveling and even dropping at the Maiden Rock gauge. If you’re planning to head out in the coming days, we recommend using stonefly nymph patterns on the banks (Delektable Halloween #6, TJ Hooker #8, Pats Rubber Leg, Mega Prince). It might also be a good time to break out the streamers, and toss some heavy buggers. As the fish key in on the big bugs staging near the river banks, they should be eager to eat a flashy streamer moved across their faces.
Water temps have been just as erratic as the river flows, so it is anyones guess as to when we might see some salmonflies. There is some potential for a few going into the weekend, but another cold front is due on Sunday and Monday. Our best recommendation is to get out on the river, and see what you might find. Don’t hesitate to give us a ring for current updates. 406-267-3346.
In anticipation of a busy couple of weeks, please remember to be courteous to fellow floaters! Park wisely, be patient at the boat ramps, and last but not least, keep those fish wet!