West Fork Bitterroot River, Montana Fly Fishing Reports & Conditions
Reported by Jim Mitchell
Fly Fishing Map of West Fork Bitterroot River, MT
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West Fork Bitterroot River, Montana Fly Fishing Reports & Conditions
My tips of the week
With the cooler weather, it is dropping and clearing. Wear a life jacket. Stay on your toes and scout ahead. There is a tree blocking most of the channel below the dam and a tree across below Apple Berry. Nymphing is your best bet. Streamers are producing as well. Single Dry's or with a dropper when it warms up and you see bugs
Fishing Conditions

Fly Fishing West Fork Bitterroot River is currently Just OK

Water flow: 1290 cfs

Visibility: 27 inches

Water temperature at mid-day: 42 Degrees F

Water condition: Moderately Turbid

Best time of day to fish: afternoon

Best stretch: Marty's Bridge Down

Best access point: All

Fly fishing hatches in order of importance:

Salmon Fly Nymphs, March Browns, Caddis, Midges

Fish species: Cutthroat, Rainbow, Brown, Brook & Bull Trout Mountain White Fish

Fishing season: Year Round Below Painted Rocks Dam (catch and release Dec 1 - 3rd Saturday in May)

Nearest airport: Missoula, MT (MSO)

Bitterroot River, West Fork Description

The West Fork of the Bitterroot River originates along the south west border of Montana. Flowing out of the Bitterroot mountain range it runs into Painted Rocks reservoir, a man-made lake created by Painted Rocks Dam. Below the dam the river flows for an additional fifteen miles to the confluence with the East Fork, creating the Bitterroot River.

The West Fork above the dam is small and well suited ...

Techniques & Tips

Look for the soft water. Double nymph rigs deep with worms and a big stone, Strip streamers with a PT or worm dropper. Big dry's with a PT, Rubber Legs or worm dropper.

7-Day Forecast

High water is here. The River will be up and down now till it's over. Stay on your toes there are trees in the river wear a life jacket. Nymphing is your best bet. Stripping streamers will produce as well. Dry's when it warms up if you see bugs.


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