There’s something about a boy, a dog and a fish. Every time I post a photo like this on our Facebook page it generates a huge response! After all, what a perfect way to spend a day – on the water, fly rod in hand, dog at your side, enjoying another perfect day in paradise. This photo of Josh and Brady’s dog Jake was taken on the Madison River between Quake and Hebgen Lakes. The fishing there has been phenomenal this spring! Be sure to check out the Firehole Ranch Facebook page for many more photos throughout the year.
Not only are the seasons currently changing, but the Firehole Ranch staff is also currently switching gears as well. We are packing and moving all of our belongings from our diverse winter dwellings to the Ranch for the summer. The staff as a whole is constantly changing gears on a day to day or even hour to hour basis. The maintenance crew is washing dishes. The kitchen crew is painting. The guide crew is repairing docks. The housekeepers are planting flowers. The wrangler is housekeeping. The servers are painting. There is always a lot of painting to be done. And the office crew is filling in everywhere else they can. Although our job descriptions are defined in writing, it should really just say “miscellaneous”.
As I said, some of our guide staff is doing maintenance on the docks. To some this might not sound like a terrible situation. We get to work outside down by the lake in a beautiful scenic environment, but to Brady and I this couldn’t be a more painful scenario. The work is hard, but more importantly, we have to watch fish slurp down midges all day while we work. Not all bad though, we do have a little window in the evening to redeem lost time on the water.
Head Guide and MT Outfitter
The peaks are still white,the hills are turning green. Waters are warming and bugs are hatching. All around trout are growing fat and happy. Some snowy days and cool nights lay ahead in the mountains no doubt. Yet everyday, our favorite waters are coming alive with the smiling sunburned faces of friends old and new. Happy spring!
let’s go fishing!
We are excited to share that Firehole Ranch has been chosen as the 2013 Orvis Fly Fishing Lodge of the Year! Thank you to our fabulous guests, staff and friends as you are the ones that make it all possible. We hope you are able to join us this summer to help celebrate!
The Montana Region results of Firehole Ranch’s great fishing rivers tournament are in. The games went mostly as expected for the most part in 3 of the 4 games, but once again, we have an upset.
A quick recap:
#1 Henry’s Fork vs #8 Taylor’s Fork
#2 Slough Creek vs. #7 Yellowstone Lake
#3 Firehole River vs. #6 Soda Butte Creek
#4 Gallatin River vs. #5 Gardner River
Winner #1 Henry’s Fork
No surprise here as Taylor’s Fork was massively outmatched by the multitude of strengths that the Henry’s Fork brings each and every game. Taylors Fork held its water at first with its surprisingly good dry fly fishing, but soon the diversity and intensity of the hatches that the H-Fork brings overwhelmed its competitor. From here on throughout the tournament the “Fork” has deserved its highly sought after shortened nickname. All hail to the mighty “Fork”.
Winner #2 Slough Creek
A once mighty has fallen, but to a long and steady rival that has continued, year after year, to provide one of the best angling experiences that can be found. Yellowstone Lake provided moments of clarity last night, but the visual aspects of its fishery, paled in comparison to Sloughs relentless meadow water. Every twist and turn of Slough’s character, stifled the deep game of the Yellowstone Lake. Right from the opening, Slough hit the ground running with a plethora of insect hatches, and miles upon miles, of some of the most scenic water that an angler can be standing in. Throughout the thoughtful and deliberate game of the Slough has this bracket nervous!
Winner #6 Soda Butte Creek
Another water from the Northeast has made a run into the second round, beating a local favorite, but only just barely. As usual the Firehole played its usual game with a quick start of caddis and PMD’s, putting it up early. But Soda Butte dominated the middle of the game with outstanding Green Drakes, Heptagenia, Eperous, PMD’s, Beetle, and Hoppers, to set up the final quarter. Soda Butte held a big lead, but as is tradition of the Firehole, it made a run, with Baetis from downtown to tighten the game in the final seconds. The howling of wolves, some downtown Baetis of its own, and a slightly larger native born game, Soda Butte came out the upset winner with a last second buzzer beater.
Winner #4 Gallatin River
Two classic trout rivers went fin to fin in this one, but in the end the relentless and consistent game of the Gallatin held off the pesky and eclectic Gardner River. Both teams brought steadiness to the forefront, and no match-up might have better emphasized what the pure pleasure of the sport can mean to its participants. This was a throwback game, where attractors and fish where they should be, doing what they should, was put on for all to see. The Gallatin came away the winner in the end but it had the scrappiness to go the distance.