Sunset on Horse Butte – the view from our front porch!
When I looked at the old fishing report, before writing the new one, I was amazed that I had not written one since August 31st………busy is the word that comes to mind. There have been countless days spent on the Float Stretch of the Madison with great clients like Pags & Crew, several days in woods chasing bull elk, a couple of days of bird hunting and lots of wood cutting. We have about 3 cords on the ground and need alteast one more. Nothing makes one sweat like running a chain saw and loading wood in the pick up.
Yesterday was the first day of Fall. There are Aspens in full color, elk are bulging and there are trout in the Madison above Hebgen Lake. YES – that’s right, there are fish running up in to Yellowstone National Park. The past two years have been sub-par on the Madison in YNP. If you forgot, we haven’t, Hebgen Lake has been too low the past two years for rainbows and browns to run up the river. We could tell why, but why waste the space again! Yesterday, ER and myself spent the day in YNP prospecting the runs of the Madison River. We had both heard reports, suspect reports, that there were fish in the river…..big fish that is, not the 6-10in residents. This is one of the earliest years in the last 11 that we have seen trout in the river all the way to the confluence of the Gibbon and the Firehole. I saw, for a lack of better term – a bait ball, of 16-20 inch trout run right by me yesterday while fishing a deep run. For a moment, I thought I was on a stealhead river in the Pacific Northwest. After waiting about 20 minutes, I strolled up to the run above me and hooked a bunch of nice trout on a rubber leg stone and RAM Caddis. Most of the fish were rainbows, Fall spawing Eagle Lake Rainbows, and a few were fat, healthy Hebgen Lake Browns. I lost two big brown trout, both over 20in, one may have gone 24………
Stay tuned for more reports from YNP. I am headed to the Missouri later this week to prefish before three days of guide trips. Greg Falls has been up there representing BSA for the last 4 months and has been giving me wonderful reports of great fishing. Mostly nymphing, but large trout. Now that the Madison is fishing, it is hard to leave, but I am looking forward to visiting the Mighty Mo and the wonderful fishing village of Craig, MT.
Dan and Greg on the Madison…..smoking a fat stoge.