Montana spey fishing

Two-Handed Report

above: Mark Raisler and Beth Hood readying the 2hand arsenal for a day on the Mo.

FINALLY

We’re finally getting the right conditions for both swing and boat streamer fishing to produce some fish. It’s been OK for the last month, but not great. Lots of little flies in skinny water. Slow retrieves. Not what most people consider “streamer” fishing.

And the drifting weeds have made swinging the two-hander difficult. Very difficult at times and places.

Beth Langell (Hood), Mark and myself hit the river a few days ago with a pile of spey rods and floating heads. The fishing has not really been very good, so we were in more of a “testing” mode.

Beth proved that there were a few fish looking for the streamer in fast water. I caught a few as well. Black Bugger with a gold conehead. Remember that one? Really the first day I’ve watched anyone fish a run and get multiple hook-ups on big fish with a straight up swing.

So why has it been so crappy? TOO warm. Just looked at the water temps, and it’s saying 51 today at Holter. Just a few days ago it registered 3-4 degrees warmer.

Booooo! And not the Halloween kind. The Philadelphia Eagles kind.

But we’re finally getting some cooler temps, including those crucial nighttime lows that are dropping into the 20’s. I expect to see a big improvement in the fish over the next week. Water temps under 50 and Brown Trout finishing serious spawning activity. The Brown’s need to get back to killing things. Like our streamers.

If you are going, I recommend finding the fastest water you can, hopefully with a little depth. You can try natural or flashy, but I would keep it on the small side to begin with. Kreelex, Foxy Clouser, Black, Olive or White Buggers, Skiddish Smolt and the Mozuri Minnow would all be in my rotation. Probably tied to 2X instead of my usual 16b.

And don’t be afraid to go try you’re two-handed gear on some other waters right now. If I was going to swing a big streamer, the Yellowstone, Madison, and upper Missouri might be on my mind.

Equipment prep continues around the shop, and new lines like the OPST Commando are building fans. We’ve been trying just about everything from everybody. Swing by and check out some demo lines to get your rig dialed. Lots of folks have been taking advantage of this opportunity.

Still open all the time, 8a-6p. Sara and Beth will be hosting our first Womens Only spey clinic this weekend (full). Our first regular class is full, and the Jan. one is close. We are really stoked to see lots of folks getting into the swing of things…

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