Snowpack Update:  SW Montana as of today.
 

Snow drifted drifter.

Jefferson River Drainage:  103%
Madison River Drainage: 109%
Gallatin River Drainage: 111%
 
Consistent snow continues to precipitate on the mountains in Southwest Montana.  4 more inches has fallen here on Horse Butte since last night and more is forecasted through the weekend.   Montana is continuing to crawl out of the water crissis prior to 2007.  Our snowpack is once again piling up.  Last year’s snowpack came late, but none the less we had plenty of water. 
 
While shoveling out the entrance to the driveway, the State Hwy Plow had put up a 3 foot wall of thick shitty snow, I looked up to see Huck on point.  He crept in a bit closer and locked up again.  After holding the point for five minutes, I felt inclined to walk in and flush the ravens.  We watched them fly off, then Huck looked at me and smiled.  Yes, Huck smiles.  He knows ravens are not game birds, but none the less, he couldn’t help himself.   This just might be the symptoms of early-onset cabin fever for an ulpland bird dog living at 6666 feet.
 

Whoa.......I wish those were roosters.

Keeping up with the big dogs.....Stella's MO.

Stella is coming along quite nicely.  Life is good at 10 weeks old.  She comes when called, will sleep most of the night in the kennel without a peep, is alert to the cap gun but not scared and overall is a mellow pup with a solid tempermant.  Like Huckleberry, she has found out that the wood stove is the warmest place in the house.  She looks to Huck for nearly everything when around the house, but will wonder out on her own through the snow to explore.  My 5wt is rigged with a pheasant wing…….her instincts are there.  The cuteness is puking out of her, but she can’t help it.  For me, the start of upland season it is like waiting for Chrismas to come when I was 6.  When Santa was, well, Santa Claus…..a fat, jolly old man with presents who flies around the world with a bunch of reindeer.  The opener of upland bird season is very far away. ….233 days to be exact.

10 weeks old, learning the ropes.

 As for the fishing?  Well, there are trout rising on the Firehole River at Biscuit Basin to midges.  Ofcourse we can’t fish for them, but I find it good fun to point out these 10 inch brown trout to the folks on my tour.  Most of the them think I’m crazy, as trout really aren’t on their radar.   It happens to be a highlight of my day, unbeknownst to them.  These browns sit downstream of the bridge, in the slicks of the bridge pilings and rise.  The water is warm and they are active, all due to the geothermal charge from Yellowstone’s Hot Spot.  The Madison Valley has more snow then last year at this time.  Getting around is not an easy task and there are snow drifts in places which are quite high.  While you could catch a few down there right now, I am waiting for February and warmer weather.  

A 24oz Bud Can waits to be opened....after shoveling.