Madison River Report - July 6, 2023

Madison River Report - July 6, 2023

We feel that flows are important to list this time of the year as the fishing on the Madison River changes dramatically as these flows drop or rise due to snowmelt, rain, run off coming from the tributaries and of course Hebgen Dam.  Pay attention to the weather and watch the flows – this past week has seen a slight drop in flows and we are hoping that NWE will keep running things at Hebgen Dam at this level for the foreseeable future. These flows are about as ideal as we can get heading into dry fly season.

MADISON RIVER FLOWS

Below Hebgen- 1060 cfs

Kirby- 1340 cfs

Varney- 1820 cfs

BETWEEN THE LAKES- 

Flows below Hebgen have stabilized and the fishing has been pretty consistent.  The chilly morning temps have kept the river cold and things can sometimes start out slow, but a decent subsurface bite from late morning through the afternoon and evening can be expected. Aim for slow seams and pocket water with bullet quills, pheasant tail jigs, olive hare’s ear, rubber legs, or a Two bit stone. If the fish become weary of bigger nymphs try downsizing your flies, those fish do like to eat small nymphs when their bellies are full of stonefly nymphs.  It never hurts to throw a mini dungeon or white BFE up along the banks during those late afternoon thunder boomers.  There are fish looking up! For those of you who are tired of staring at a bobber, that’s most of around here, it’s time to start paying attention to the insects flying around the banks of the river.  There are caddis, mayflies and some smaller stone flies hatching on a daily basis.  A Corn-fed Caddis, Jojo’s Chubinator, Iron-X Caddis, Iris Caddis, Jojo’s PMD, Copenhaver Rusty Spinner or Heames PMD Klinkhammer will bring fish to the surface.  We have a great selction of micro-chubbies (#12-#16) at the shop, don’t over look these attractor patterns this time of the year when searching for feeding trout.

 WADE SECTION- 

The Wade Section of the Madison has come into prime shape! With these more normal flows, the bank water and pocket water is very enticing. The fish have settled into the flows and things down in the Wade Section are pretty darn good. Trout have begun to look up and the hatches have started. Now is definitely the time to put away the bobber and start fishing on the surface.  Your best bet is to take off walking, find some pocket water, sit down and observe your surroundings.  Look for caddis bouncing in the slicks, maylfies emerging from slicks, or the morning/evening dance of a mayfly spinner fall. This is what we have been waiting for, dry fly season is here. A Corn-fed Caddis, Jojo’s Chubinator, Iron-X Caddis, Iris Caddis, Jojo’s PMD, Jojo’s Rusty, Jojo’s Green Drake, Copenhaver Rusty Spinner or Heames PMD Klinkhammer will bring fish to the surface.  We have a great selction of micro-chubbies (#12-#16) at the shop, don’t over look these attractor patterns this time of the year when searching for feeding trout.

FLOAT SECTION- 

Okay folks, things have really heated up on the Madison over this past week.  Caddis are hatching in prolific numbers, there are PMDs and Green Drakes emerging and there are both Salmonflies and Golden Stones flying about. This is what we were dreaming about back in March when the snow was piling up and the winter blues were keeping us down.  A Corn-fed Caddis, Jojo’s Chubinator, Iron-X Caddis, Iris Caddis, Jojo’s PMD, Copenhaver Rusty Spinner or Heames PMD Klinkhammer will bring fish to the surface.  We have a great selction of micro-chubbies (#12-#16) at the shop, don’t overlook these attractor patterns this time of the year when searching for feeding trout.

Big bugs have popped river wide in pockets from Windy Point down to Varney. If you just fished a Salmonfly like it was the only fly you had in your box, you will raise some good fish.  There will be down time, like with any dry fly fishing, but if you keep fishing it, they will eat it.  The bank water throughout the float stretch is the place to concentrate your drifts – get in there tight, fish heavy tippet(1X, 0X or 6-8lb Maxima), believe in your drift and hang on.  We like Lawson’s Salmonfly and Golden, Jacklin’s Salmonfly, Jojo’s Salmonfly and Golden or the Salmonfly Razorback.  Pick your poison and fish it hard.

Nymphing is still effective but why stare at a bobber when you can reach cast a with dry fly?   If you want to, we like the following choices - Copper Duracells, Shop Vacs, olive perdigons, CDC pheasant tails, PMD Frenchie, Olive AZ Hares Ear, Rubber legs and the various Spanish Bullet Quill are all solid options to fish under a bobber or dropped off a large Chubby.

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Madison River

Perhaps the most prominent fishing destination in the area, the Madison River is also one of the most diverse fisheries in the western US, with multiple sections split based on geography and topography.

Explore the Madison

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