Missouri River Monday Fishing Report 8.15.22
A decent August as we mark the half way point of the soft summer month. Dog days? Yeah.
Been real freaking hot with daytime temps int he mid 90’s for the entire month. The next ten days forecast for the same. Last night the lows dipped into the 50’s. The next spell we tickle the lower 60’s but not anything cooler tan that. Not much river cooling as the air temps will not allow it.
But we are OK for the time being in regards to the Hoot-Owl situations around the state. No Closures here on Montana’s Missouri River. NO HOOT-OWL.
But, we are truly practicing Hoot-Owl style here on the Mighty Mo. Most are starting quite early, certainly our guides, and finishing early. It is damn hot out there and the humans don’t really like it all that much either. The for an air-conditioned nap after the fishing session. Or a dip in the river is cool too. A long dip.
Hoppers are good. Kinda any terrestrial you like. Cicada. Ant. Hopper. Beetle. Stop in and ask what the hottest latest bug is.
Trico hatches are localized. Can be real good in some locations and not so good in others. Fished yesterday in the canyon reach and saw several localized pods. Were they easy to catch? Nope. Quite aware of anglers and pressure. While not much pressure in the lower reaches as the heat wave continues the fish are pretty keen to outside presence. A factor when you approach as well. Cannot get too close to those fish rising. Add 20′-25′ to your normal distance and you should get a few casts off before the fish get wise. And, they do not bounce back quickly, or at all.
So keep that in mind when you are fishing to the upper river rising trout. They are aware of predatory behaviors around and near them.
Negative reinforcement is the strongest educator in nature.
Clusters will still work if you approach like a pro. But it is the time where you need to empty a few of the smaller and tech Trico dry flies. We have a full selection of the Headhunting type small flies. Headhunters is our name, Headhunting is our game. Yup.
The nymphers are still on the Zirdle Bug, or the larger mayfly lead with a smaller mayfly bottom or midge type fly. Many are up at the dam rowing around. Normal for the period. Normal for the next 6 weeks. Fewer weeds, lots of fish, a consistent population of large rainbows.
Weeds are in the water column. How many? Depends on the day. If the flows have been jacked around a bit they will be worse. On the surface too in soft regions of the river.
Swing Season coming up soon. Plan your fall or late fall trip today. October and November will be here soon along with cooler temperatures.
Come see us if you are in the neighborhood this August. Guides, lodging, and fun here in Craig Montana. 406-235-3447
Back in 2010’s heyday of trico hatches my best bet was a hi viz poly winged trico spinner with a size 20 B/W/silver zebra a foot below on 6X drifted down to the pods while anchored up and to one side a bit. Before the huge increase in fun floaters there were massive pods that looked like riffles. Catch a couple, wait for them to get comfortable again and repeat. The same technique worked wonders on the Horn too.