We are down from the Sweet 16 of fantastic fishing destinations in the Greater Yellowstone area to the Great 8. Some intriguing match-ups were in this round, true nail-biters, especially with the inclusion of the two underdogs who escaped the first round with upset wins. Both 6 seeds from their respective brackets made it into the Great 8, will they go any further?
First up is the recap of the games from the Yellowstone Region.
#1 Madison River vs. #5 Quake Lake
History would dictate that this game ought to be a easy win for the Madison. It is after all the storied, fabled, and legendary 50 mile riffle. Maybe no other river has as much history with-in fly fishing lore as the Madison River. Legends were born and bred on the rough and tumble nature of this mighty river. Names like Charlie Brooks, Ross A Marigold, Bob Jacklin, Bud Lilly, and many others call this institution their alma mater. Yet the Madison had a scrappy opponent that has surged in recent years to be considered a contender, Quake Lake. After all, Quake knocked off Hebgen Lake, a mighty foe in its own right. For just about every minute these two went back and forth, but in the latter stages of the contest, the historical significance of all that entails the Madison River outlasted the upstart Quake Lake. The Madisonʼs all encompassing power house game that includes year round dry fly, nymphing, and streamer fishing, swamped Quake’s 6 month season of the same , but slightly shortened game.
Winner: Madison River
#2 Yellowstone River vs. #6 Ruby River
Our first game of the week included our first #6 seed to make it into the second round. The Ruby’s small stature was predicted to have its hands full with the giants that make up the Yellowstone River. For the first half of the game it looked like we had a major upseton our hands. The Ruby pulled out all the punches, with blistering hatches of PMDʼsYellow Sallies, Baetis, and Caddis galore. By the midway point there were tearful mournings from Vegas odd makers. But the second half was all Yellowstone. Matching the hatches of the Ruby, the Yellowstone threw in some Golden Stones and Salmonflies, the true big boys, followed up with Green and Gray Drakes, and to top it all off Hoppers and Ants. Too much game for just about any competitor.
Winner: Yellowstone River
Look out folks the Final Four has its first goliath of a match up!
#1 Madison River vs. #2 Yellowstone River
Post your feelings now about which river, and why, should make it to the championship game!