July went buy in a big hurry. What a busy month. The Yellowstone has been all over the map this year. We have had everything from great fishing to warm water temperatures to mud plugs, it always keeps us honest. Overall, the fishing has been solid on the dry fly. There have been some days when the fishing was down right tough, but considering what Mother Nature has thrown at us, I am very pleased with the month of July.
Many rivers in Montana are struggling with high water temps and drought conditions. There is a growing list of closures. We have had our own struggles with those problems, but we have been very fortunate with the Yellowstone. Historically, this fishery is the last to fall with high water temps, and luckily for us this resilient river is holding strong despite 60% of average flows. The temps are very good now, ranging from the low to mid 60’s. There were some concerns in July with high temps and tough fishing, but we fought through it. Fortunately, it was very isolated and we were always able to find some fish. Now, more temperate weather and the longer and cooler nights of August are bringing this fishery back to normal standards. The dry fly fishing has been solid and that hopper bite is improving daily. We are seeing some very nice fish and great action. I am very excited for the rest of Augusts’ fishing on this great river. In the mornings we have been fishing smaller patterns; ants, caddis, parachutes, and the like. As the day warms up, we will tie on the hopper or another big dry and are triggering eats from very nice fish.The upper river has been great, we have spent a lot of days in the raft running Yankee Jim Canyon. The fishing down on the lower river has been solid, not as much action but some very nice fish. We are living by the dry fly right now, and how sweet it is….