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November 19, 2020

 

We've been focusing all of our attention on the Madison below Quake over the last week. We've had several warm afternoons that have produced some solid fishing, with a few midges hatching and plenty of action with nymphs. Brown #16-18 $3 Dips, cream #16 Montana Bullets, black #18-20 Zebra Midges, #18 Half Pints, and #18 Perdigonomids have been the best patterns lately, with #22-24 Improved Zelon Midges and #20-22 Scotty's Midges getting the job done on the occasional riser.

 

 

Wherever you fish this time of year, please remember that it is brown trout spawning season. Please exercise caution when wading and if you encounter any redds or actively spawning fish, please leave them be so they can produce the next generation of trout in peace.

 

 

November 12, 2020

 

Fishing remains solid on the Madison below Quake, particularly on the warmer afternoons. It looks as if we’ll begin a warming trend early next week that should provide highs in the 40s, which is perfect for fishing this time of year. Nymph fishing will be your best bet, with brown #16-18 $3 Dips, black #18-20 Zebra Midges, black #18 Perdigon Nymphs, #18 Half Pints, and #16 cream Montana Bullets all being great choices for fly patterns. Dry fly fishing has been spotty but be prepared with a few midges just in case, and be ready to walk and cover some water if you want to look for some risers. If you find fish coming up, tempt them with #22-24 Improved Zelon Midges, #20-22 Scotty’s Midges, and #20 Griffith’s Gnats.

 

The Madison between the lakes is also a good choice right now. Try #8-10 black Rubberlegs, $16 brown $3 Dips, $14 Guide Serendipities, #18 black Zebra Midges, and #18 black Perdigon Nymphs. Streamers are a good option here, too, with white Sculpzillas, Baker's Hole Buggers, olive Sparkle Yummies, and black Prospectors all great choices. Be extra careful here to give spawning brown a wide berth.

 

Wherever you fish this time of year, please remember that it is brown trout spawning season. Please exercise caution when wading and if you encounter any redds or actively spawning fish, please leave them be so they can produce the next generation of trout in peace.

 

 

November 5, 2020

 

With the Yellowstone Park season closed, the Madison below Quake now becomes the place to be. A mixture of a few Baetis and midges will still bring some fish to the surface most afternoons, though activity will often be sparse and you'll want to cover some water to find risers. Go between the hours of 11:00am and 4:00pm and try #24 Baetis Sparkle Duns, #22-24 Improved Zelon Midges, #20-22 Scotty's Midges, and #20 Griffith's Gnats if you encounter some fish feeding on top. Nymph fishing should remain solid for the foreseeable future, so give it a shot with #16-18 brown $3 Dips, #18 Red Necks, #18 black Perdigon Nymphs, and #18-20 black Zebra Midges.

 

The Madison between the lakes is another top choice right now, especially if you are looking for a truly large fish. Nymphing will be most productive with #8-10 black or coffee Rubberlegs, #14-16 brown $3 Dips, #16 Prince Nymphs, and #16 red Thunder Bugs, but don't be afraid to try throwing a streamer as well. Go-to patterns include #6 copper Zonkers, #8 black Prospectors, #8 olive Sculpzillas and #6 sculpin Sparkle Minnows.

 

Wherever you fish this time of year, please remember that it is brown trout spawning season. Please exercise caution when wading and if you encounter any redds or actively spawning trout, please leave them be so they can produce the next generation of trout in peace.

 

 

 

October 29, 2020

 

The Madison in the Park will be the prime attraction these last few days of the season, with plenty of run-up fish spread out throughout the Madison from the lake to the junction. With forecasts showing cool, sunny weather, we anticipate that swinging flies will be best for the first few hours of the day and the last hour or two, while fishing nymphs will most likely prove most productive through the middle of the day. Try swinging flies like the Montana Intruder, Baker's Hole Bugger, natural Super Squirrels, black Prospectors and brown/yellow Soft Hackle Streamers, as well as Shakey Beeleys, Full Dressed Reds, Grouse & Pinks, orange Partridge & Ice and Blew on Blue for soft hackles. For nymphs, look for the slower, deeper water and drift a #8-10 black Rubberlegs with a #16 Prince Nymph, #14 Euro Stone, #18 purple Perdigon Nymph, or #16-18 brown $3 Dip for a dropper.

 

On the Gibbon River, there are solid numbers of fish all the way up to the falls now, and it continues to be a place to escape a few of the anglers that are sure to come out for the last weekend. Don't be afraid to cover some water here, as the big fish will often be a little less concentrated than they are on the Madison, but hooking into a hog on this little river is a memorable experience. Try stripping a copper Zonker, black or olive/white Prospector, or a black Sculpzilla through all the little pockets and deeper runs, or go deep with the same nymphs mentioned above.

 

The Firehole is still fishing well and will be another solid option for finishing out the season. Baetis mayflies are still emerging between 12pm and 4pm, and be sure to have #22-24 Sparkle Duns and #20-22 Baetis Soft Hackles to match this hatch. Swinging soft hackles will also produce some fish this weekend, with #16 Ephemerella Emergers, #19 Peacock & Starling, #14 Partridge & Green, and #16 Snipe & Purple soft hackles will all be great choices.

 

If you're looking to avoid the park altogether, the Madison below Quake is another top choice. A few Baetis are still emerging in the afternoons, and midges are becoming more important by the day as well. If you see risers, try #22-24 Baetis Sparkle Duns, #20-22 Scotty's Midges and #22-24 Improved Zelon Midges. Nymphing has still been productive as well, with #16-18 brown $3 Dips, #16-20 black Zebra Midges, #18 Darth Baetis, #16 cream Montana Bullets, #18 Micro Madison Baetis, and #10-12 coffee Rubberlegs being the flies to have.

 

 

 

October 22, 2020

 

The Madison in the Park remains a great option and we don't foresee this changing during this last week. There are fish throughout the system and you can find these runners anywhere between Hebgen Lake and Madison Junction. Nymphing remains the best method from a productivity standpoint. Size 6 and 8 coffee Rubberlegs, #16 brown $3 Dips, #18 black or purple Perdigon Nymphs, #16-18 red Two-Bit Hookers and #14-16 Guide Dips are the nymphs of choice. If you prefer streamer fishing, Montana Intruders, Super Squirrels, Baker's Hole Buggers and Super Buggers have produced well. For swinging Shakey Beeleys, Full Dressed Reds, Partridge & Ice and Grouse & Pink have been great go-to soft hackles.

 

We don't expect to see many more White Millers show up on the Firehole River until next season but there are still plenty of Baetis and midges to get the fish up on the surface. These guys can be a bit finicky when feeding on the surface so you may have to go with a little longer and lighter rig. For flies have #20-22 Baetis Sparkle Duns and Klinkhammers, #14 March Brown Spiders, #14 Peacock & Partridge, #16 Ephemerella Emergers, #16 Nick’s Soft Hackle Caddis, and #16 Micro Beeleys.

 

As we've been preaching for a couple of weeks now the Gibbon is a great option to explore and will hold some of the larger run-up fish from Hebgen. Often overlooked, this little river can be a game changer to your day. Give it a shot for a couple hours! For nymphs have #8 black Rubberlegs, #16 brown $3 Dips and Montana Bullets, #14 Beadhead Princes, and #16 Red Butt Darts. If streamers are your game try #8 black or olive/white Prospectors, #8 olive Sparkle Yummies, #6 copper Zonkers, and #6 black or tan Super Buggers.

 

The Madison below Quake Lake is fishing well with Baetis. These #20-22 mayflies have been hatching somewhere between 1:00 and 3:00pm. With the cold weather coming this could happen later in the day or not at all, either way you won't want to be without a few imitations like a #20-22 Sparkle Dun Baetis or Bucky's Upright Baetis. It's always a good idea to have an emerger or two also, The #20-22 Baetis Foam Emerger is just the ticket. If you're nymphing try #16-18 brown or crystal $3 Dips, #20 Foam Baetis Nymphs and #20 Micro Madison Midges, #18 Shot Glass Baetis, and #8-10 coffee Rubberlegs.

 

 

 

October 8, 2020

 

The Madison in the Park has fished well this past week and with a bit of scuzzy, cooler weather coming in this weekend, we should see the run-up fish get a little more aggressive. Goblins, Montana Intruders, Shakey Beeleys and Light Spruces have been great choices for swinging. For stripping flies, the Super Squirrel, Goblin, Prospector and Sheila's Sculpin have worked well. Nymphing has been the most productive with Pat's Rubberlegs #8, Guide Dips #14, Perdigon Nymphs #16, Radiation Baetis #18, Micro Mayflies #16-18 and $3 Dips $16-18.

 

The Firehole should make for some good dry fly activity come Sunday and you should make sure that you are prepared with both Baetis dries and emergers. The Baetis will be small in the 20-22 range and even perhaps 24s, so carry a few Sparkle Duns in these sizes as well as Baetis Foam Emergers and Baetis Soft Hackles. Swinging is always a good option and #16 Micro Beeleys, #16 Nick's Soft Hackle Caddis, #14 Peacock and Partridge and #14-16 Pheasant Tail Soft Hackles will serve you well.

 

Don't overlook the Gibbon River as many folks do this time of year. This can be a very productive river and is a great option over the Madison when it gets a little crowded. This small water can produce some shocking fish. As with the Madison you can swing, strip or nymph this river and even a dry-dropper rig will work great at times. For nymphs have Pat's Rubberlegs #8, Guide Dips #14, Perdigon Nymphs #16, Radiation Baetis #18, and $3 Dips #16-18. For swinging or stripping, try Montana Intruders, Prospectors and Super Squirrels.

 

The Lamar, Slough and Soda Butte are still hanging in there and still well worth heading to. There are still a few Drake Mackerels hanging around along with Baetis. Hoppers are coming to an end but a Longhorn Beetle is always worth a try. The fishing will turn on later in the day and your best time frame will be between 11:00am and 4:00pm. Have #12 Drake Mac Sparkle Duns, #20-22 Baetis Sparkle Duns, Longhorn Beetles, #12-14 Princes and #18-20 black Zebra Midges.

 

The Madison below Quake Lake could be one of the best options for dry fly fishing once we get some clouds rolling in. The fishing has still been ok in this section and it's hard to beat the scenery that the Madison valley provides. Carry with you black/brown Rubberlegs #8-10, Juju Baetis #18-20, Darth Baetis #18, $3 Dips #16-18, Crystal Dips #16-18, Sparkle Dun Baetis #20-24, #18-20 black Zebra Midges and Baetis Foam Emergers in #18-22. For streamers, Prospectors, gold/copper Kreelex, Montana Intruders, and Sparkle Minnows are all good choices.

 

 

October 1, 2020

 

The Madison in the Park continues to see more and more fish in the system with each passing day, and we are at the point where you can pick your poison as to what method of fishing you prefer, either dead drift, strip or swing. All of these methods have worked over the past week. If you're swinging flies the Goblin, Montana Intruder, Shakey Beeley, Blew on Blue and the Full Dressed Red have all been good choices. For stripping flies, the Super Squirrel, Goblin, Bakers Hole Bugger and Sheila's Sculpin have worked well. Nymphing has been the most productive with Pat's Rubberlegs #8, Guide Dips #14, Perdigon Nymphs #16, Radiation Baetis #18, and Micro Mayflies #16-18. Also in certain areas of the Madison, be on the lookout for Baetis on the surface and be prepared with a Baetis Black Wing Cripple or Klinkhammer #20-22.

 

The Firehole has been a good option lately, but as we said last week this is never a gimme. The sun will be out over the next few days so make sure you have a few White Millers, and the Baetis have been small so have Baetis Sparkle Duns in #22-24 with you as well. As you may have guessed, swinging flies has been the most productive here. Size 16 Micro Beeleys, #14-16 Pheasant Tail Soft Hackles and #14 Peacock & Partridge soft hackles will work well.

 

The Gibbon River is always a good place to give a shot this time of year and often times you can escape some of the crowds. Swinging and nymphing can be a ton of fun in this little river and can produce some very surprising results. Try #8-10 Rubberlegs, #16 Lightning Bugs in silver, #18 Radiation Baetis, and #16-18 Micro Mayflies for nymphing and Shakey Beeleys, Partridge & Ice in orange and Full Dressed Reds for swinging. 

 

Over in the northeast corner on Slough, Lamar and Soda Butte, Drake Mackerels and Baetis will most likely show up late in the day between 2:00pm and 4:00pm. Have with you some #12 Drake Mackerel Sparkle Duns, #12 Drake Mac Emergers and Baetis Black Wing Cripples and Klinkhammers in #20-22. The water levels are low on all three of these streams but the fishing has still been worth the venture over. Don't be afraid to throw a Longhorn Beetle or hopper in the afternoons if you go!

 

The Madison below Quake Lake has been fishing well and this is a great time to see pods of fish rising to Baetis mayflies if we get a few clouds. This activity can be isolated, so make sure you hit a few different slicks and spend some time observing each to find the pods of risers. The Baetis have been emerging later in the day between 1:00 and 4:00pm and the intensity will vary greatly depending on conditions. The nymphing has remained solid with smaller nymphs such as #18 Micro Mayflies, #16-18 Radiation Baetis, #18-20 JuJu Baetis, #18 $3 Dips and black #18-20 Zebra Midges. Hopper fishing is close to being done for the year but for the next few days while it is still warm out don't be afraid to try one for at least a little while in the afternoon.

 

 
 

 

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