July 12th-Here comes the Madison

Good Morning Folks,

Officially this is the latest date that I can remember that the Madison has finally come into what can be reasonably considered fishable shape. Clear water is pushing down from Quake Lake, and the West Fork has also mostly cleared. A few other tributary streams further downstream, like Indian creek, are still carrying a little color, but for the most part clear water rules the channel, and it is well past time to be fishing the Madison. Not to say that we haven’t been doing the ol’ Montana chuck and duck for the past month or so, but now dry flies and small nymphs will be adorning our fly rods for the rest of the summer. Salmonflies are working their way up from Varney, and some of the trout are showing their frustration with their lack of vision and attacking these large bugs with gusto. It will be bug soup here for the next couple of weeks as Goldenstones, Yellow Sallies, PMD’s, Epeorus, Green Drakes, Hydropsyche Caddis, all will be riding the salmonflies coattails. The Madison is higher than normal still, so good cast in close to the bank are going to bring more willing risers to the dry fly. The Madison says it is game time!!!

Meanwhile, the Henry’s Fork is in the middle of bug soup, up and down its entire length. The Box Canyon has great flows and the nymphs in this water are on the prowl. Small nymphs such as Shop Vac, Serendipities and Pheasant Tails are the way to go in this boulder strewn obstacle course. Big rainbows lie inn wait for the angler willing to go nymphing hardcore. Game on here as well. The lower fork around Ashton has been producing great dry fly fishing with Green and Gray Drakes, caddis, and PMD’s. In between hatches go with the standard nymphing fare here and you will stayed tied to fish all day. Game is on and in overtime in this water.

Sad to say, but it is not game time in the Park,…yet. But it is coming and it could be very soon. Look for some fishing opportunities to open up this week, and just continue to get better as the month progresses. More on the Park fishing pops later this week.

For now, it is time for this fisherman to return to the 50 mile riffle and throw some of the big bugs. Game on.

Tight lines and Jumping Trout


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