Wednesday Missouri River Observations

Wednesday Missouri River Observations

Wednesday Missouri River Observations

  • Flows at 6K. The reservoir is 97.9% full. At 97% the Core of Engineers takes over water flows, or eat least they own that final 3% of capacity. Check out the gauge here.
  • Wade fishing is good. Access here on the Mo is great. But, a gentle reminder once again. Lots of folks parked in front of ranch gates. Don’t be an idiot and block access to other folks property. Think a little bit today, tomorrow. You re smart people, act smart. Be respectful of private property and associated owners. Access is a privilege. Not a right.

https://www.usbr.gov/gp-bin/arcweb_cfr.pl


  • The fish are in faster water. The nymph bite in that ripping water is great. Water temps 58F too 61F. That means that the fish are active. 54-58F is the wheel house for trout. They will move for the bait right now. Fish a dry dropper or swing a soft hackle PMD emergers, or caddis, thorough that skinny water for success. Shallow quick riffles hold fish. Just an observation. While this is a tailwater, not a true tailwater with bottom feed and release, we do have controlled flows. Dam controlled. Fish the Mo like a freestone in the summer months. Meaning fish do live in waters other than the slow boring stuff.
  • The Trichoptera rhyacophila, green caddis, loves on this river. When you are having trouble sub-surface you can use the green or olive caddis in your box with some success. I rowed up to John a number of years ago when he was bent (way more than me!) in the middle canyon reach and asked what he was using. Green Caddis Pupa was the hot tip. Now passing it on to you. I employed this tidbit of knowledge yesterday with long time Bitterrroot guest Mark Clearwater. And, it worked. Got our largest trout of the day!

Wednesday Missouri River Observations


  • The Dearborn looks perfect yesterday, today, tomorrow. Falling fast. Get on it if you want to get on it this year. The window is open. But, closing rapidly. Falling quickly. Below 250cfs is trouble for rafts etc. Trying to get on it tomorrow. Will plead with guest to venture into this beautiful canyon and catch a few trout. Max and Chad are floating today. Report in some manner tomorrow.
  • I see boats on anchor, casting at rising trout. Several yesterday.
  • We had our best PMD emergence yesterday too. Lots more. Some fish on them. You gotta look hard. Those who focus on the dry fly, have better opportunities. The classic line “Let’s just nymph until we see some rising trout” does not put in in the right mindset, or the right place, or…but it is good for nymphing, if you like that sort of thing. The both sides of the street, or trying to do both, trying to have it all  is not a good model to follow for catching rising trout. But, if that is how you roll, then own it.
  • Dry-dripper in the riffles can bring some trout to hand. Blind casting in the faster stuff is fun. Use it to tune up your slack line casts for use when you spot a rising trout and are willing to present a fly to it.
  • The dam is crowded. Other reaches of the river can be. It is our busiest month. Go early if you like. You do not have to wait for the trout to warm up. Some good evening bites too. But, inconsistent.
  • Since the PMD’s were late, the Trico’s may be too. BWO’s late, midges, late…But we are not two weeks behind. More like 10days. But Mother Nature has a funny way of equalizing herself. Self righting? Correcting?
  • Best Brown Drake and Yellow Sally patterns at Headhunters. 7wt has us set up for success. You too.
  • Differing start times for the boats out there. early and late. Your choice.
  • Seems that the traffic is not out fo control here. You can get in a boat and wade fish jam. The best practice here is to wait 10 minutes and let them shake out. They, it, will. Just pull over, sit down, and enjoy the summer breeze. Close your eyes, breath deeply, smell the caddis in the air. Get deep in your environment.
  • Headhunters Logo Wear is hot right now. Sunshirts and gloves too. The largest selection of sunglasses from Smith, Costa, Suncloud, and more at HH of Craig. Your fun fly shop on the river. Open daily 630am and late til 9pm. Late shuttles, free maps, freed coffee, try us out for rigging suggestions, tactical flies, long leaders, techy CDC, Just Add Vise Tying Kits.
  • Check out the other fishing reports around the river today. Headhunters is your entertainment, information, education, and customer service leader here on the Mo. We appreciate your business. We encourage you to stop in if you are ready for a different kind of Missouri River experience. A fresher look. A new vibe. We expect more from a fly shop, and Headhunters delivers. Are you ready for more?
  • Enjoy your Hump Day. Hope to see you soon. Be sure to check us out on our other media platforms HH FB, and HH Instagram
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