Bitterroot River, Montana Fly Fishing Reports & Conditions
Fly Fishing Map of Bitterroot River, MT
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Bitterroot River, Montana Fly Fishing Reports & Conditions
My tips of the week
Skwalas are here, together with little brown and black stones, but most active in the afternoon. Flows have continued to drop this week so this fishing should continue to improve. In the spring longest, best drift wins - make yours count.
Fishing Conditions

Fly Fishing Bitterroot River is currently Good

Water flow: 1550cfs (about average for this time of year)

Visibility: 36 inches

Water temperature at mid-day: 44 Degrees F

Water condition: Clear

Best time of day to fish: Give the mornings a bit to warm up. Overnight temps are still below freezing.

Best stretch: The whole river is fishable, flows are solid as is clarity.

Best access point: Multiple fishing access sites throughout the river.

Fly fishing hatches in order of importance:

Skwalas #10-8, brown stones #12-14, black stones #16, BWO's #16 under clouds, March browns #14 any day.

Fish species: Trout - rainbows, browns and cutties - whitefish

Fishing season: Year round; some tributaries closed December 1-third week of May. Check regulations before fishing.

Nearest airport: Missoula International Airport (MSO)

Person Fishing in a stream

Bitterroot River Description

The panoramic mountains of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness towering above this river make for an unforgettable setting. The Bitterroot affords anglers over 80 miles of varied freestone trout water ranging from riffles and runs to undercuts and deadfalls. This river's largest fish often rise to dry flies even in non-hatch conditions. One of our guides claims that "If you catch a fish on the Bitterroot, you ...

Techniques & Tips

Dry-dropper is the name of the game on the Bitterroot right now with most fish coming on the dropper. The Rogue skwala and Carnage skwala will float a more substantial nymph. Keep and eye out for fish eating mayflies on the surface as well. If you see BWO's try a parachute BWO or Purple Haze in #16-#18. For March Browns, a Brindlechute, PT Parachute or Purple Haze in #14 will work. Nymphing Princes, Rubberlegs/TJ Hookers, and Double Bead Stones will work well as a skwala imitation. Try a jig PT or Duracell if the fish aren't on the stonefly nymphs. As always, Perdigons/Spanish Bullets and San Juans are getting the job done. Streamer fishing has been productive. Sparkle Minnows, Mini Dungeons, Kreelex, and Peanut Envys should get an eat. If you're not getting into them try changing to a contrasting color or switching up your retrieve. Call or email us for up to the minute updates at 406.542.7411 or if you are in the area stop in- WE HAVE MOVED TO OUR BRAND NEW LOCATION AT 275 N. RUSSELL STREET IN MISSOULA- for all your Orvis gear and the right bugs.

7-Day Forecast

Temps will get into the mid-60's this weekend. With most of the low snow gone this shouldn't cause too much of a bump in flows. Some precipitation is expected on Sunday. Next week we are expecting daily highs in the mid-50's to mid-60's.


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