Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 4/22

Missoula Fishing Report

Late Skwalas and Spring Mayflies

Over the past week the fishing has been nothing short of incredible. Really, there is nothing more to say. But this is a fishing report so I guess I have to give you more than that. 

Mayflies: The March Browns/Grey Drakes have been coming down river like the British Navy. Sails up. When you find the clouds the fish have been eating like college kids on a late night Denny’s binge. The most productive patterns have been old school. Hares ear’s and pheasant tail parachutes. The good stuff. The Root. The Clark. And The Blackfoot. The bugs are all over the place.  

Skwalas: They are still around on The Bitterroot and a sneaky low profile bullet head will catch fish at this point in the hatch. The Clark Fork’s “Flying” skwalas have just shown up as well. The only tricky part is the high sun. Those Clark Fork fish seem to get a bit sketchy in the sun. So don’t go unless we get clouds. But then again go anywhere when we have clouds. Get a monster brown on the root in the clouds or catch the feisty Clark Fork rainbows in the clouds. Pick Your Poision. 

There isn’t really that much more to say. The fishing has been awesome. Some would even say “Epic”. If you have been on the fence about coming out here, Do it. You can’t catch em in the office. 

All Skwalas are 20% off here at the shop. Stop by and fill those holes in your spring fly box. We would be happy to help you out with that. 

-The MAngler


Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Weekend Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report

The weather for the weekend looks to be fantastic for dry fly fishing. But there looks to be a little bit of wind in the forecast. The dark drizzle will have the trout looking up for mayflies and the mayflies will be happy in this weather. If you can find a side channel to get away from the wind in I would guess that you would see March Browns and Blue Wings. I would also be willing to bet there would be fish eating them somewhere close by. 

The Skwala fishing has been great and the trout seem to enjoy playing along. Lot’s of fat, healthy, and Strong fish. This late in the hatch stick to low pro skwala bugs. You don’t want a big synthetic wing to be the first thing to come into the trout sight window. Time to get sneaky with your bugs. 

As for the rivers, They are all fishing well. No need to just stay on The Bitterroot. The Blackfoot and Clark Fork are right in shape and fishing very well. Rock Creek is also giving up some great fishing on top in the afternoons. 

Lot’s and Lot’s of fun to be had on the rivers right now. Get out and go fishing. 

-The MAngler

Be sure to Follow us on Instagram @Missouliananglerflyshop


Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report For Tuesday 4/7

Missoula Fishing Report

Bitterroot River Fishing Report

The past few days have been fantastic dry fly fishing. The March Browns were impressive yesterday to say the least. Lots and lots and lots of mayflies in the eddy’s and above the riffles. We have had boats somewhere in the upper half of the Bitterroot River all week. With the colder nights the dry fly fishing has taken a little while to get going. From what we have been seeing it’s worth the wait. The average dry fly fish yesterday was impressive. Healthy, strong, and eager to eat. Our favorite kind of fish. 

Bitterroot Skwala Fishing

As for flies, they have been eating the typical spring bugs. For Skwalas we have been throwing The Rastaman, The Rouge, The P.K., and The Fat Frank. The Mayflies have been just a productive. Those patterns include The Parachute Hares ear, The Haze, The Brindlechute, The Copper Haze, The Mountain Mint, The Parachute Adams, and whatever else looks like a size 14-16, brownish mayfly.  When the BWO’s show up, just go smaller and they will eat it with the right drift. Really, the fish are wanting to eat right now. They are hungry and the bugs are here. Time to fish. 

The fish are still hanging out on the “Off” banks. But we are starting to catch some nice fish in the soft breaks on the heavy banks. The forecast looks great for spring stonefly fishing. So get out and enjoy the nice weather while it is here. The fishing has been fantastic, catch a cold and sneak away from work this week. Who knows when the next snow storm might show up!

-The MAngler 


Missoula Fishing Report

Easter Sunday Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report


From a fishing stand point, Easter has normally been a turning point for the fishing around the Missoula area. The mayflies are start to show up in good numbers and the Skwalas have been crawling on the rocks in The Bitterroot long enough to have nice fish looking up for a stonefly. Easter weekend seems to be when we can count on good dry fly fishing for the better part of the day. 

The only difference this year seems to be the water levels. Yes the water is high. Yes it seems pushy on the upper rivers. Is it slowing down the fishing? No. 

The bugs are here. The spring stoneflies are here in good numbers. The big spring mayflies are starting to play a bigger role in “fish catching”. The afternoons have been giving up some fantastic dry fly fishing. Big mayfly attractors are working well. Hare’s ear’s, Para-Adams, The Haze, The Brindleshute, Carnage Drakes, and Mountain Mints are all getting eating. The Skwala bugs that are working seem to be in the Low-Pro category. Anything with a bullethead. The PK, The Rouge, and The Rastaman. The most important variable has been where you are putting that bug. Remember that it is spring. The water is still cold and fish are not hanging out where they do in July. I draw “Spring Fishing Diagrams” at least once a day here in the shop. 

Fish the “Triangles”. The soft water coming off the riffle. The seam where two currents come together after an island.  The soft water Triangles are where the fish are eating the dry fly right now. Spring fishing is just simple geometry. And you thought you wouldn’t use your 3rd grade math again…

Remember to replace that old tippet you bought last year. You don’t want to loose that big brown on old tippet that you found in your glove box before you got on the water. 

-The MAngler


Missoula Fishing Report

Friday Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report

A quick overview of what’s going on around Missoula this weekend.

First and foremost, our good friend and Missoulian Angler Fly Shop Guide, Burke, is opening his BBQ restaurant. The Notorious P.I.G. is opening it’s doors at 11 am today in downtown Missoula. If you are around Missoula today, be sure to stop by and have your taste buds blown away.

Secondly, The Montana Fishing Film Fest is going on Saturday at the Roxy. Tickets are $10 and we have them available here at the shop. We are also going to have a Pre-party here at the shop before the movies. So feel free to stop by and enjoy a beverage.

Now lets talk about the fishing.

The Bitterroot: The river is still way above normal flows for this time of year. That being said the fishing has been very decent. The mornings have been colder the past few days causing the dry fly fishing to get going a bit later. Early morning streamer fishing and nymphing has been productive. Rubber legs, beadhead style prince patterns, and worms for your nymph set up. The Skiddish smolt, The Kreelex, and The Sparkle minnow have been producing for streamers. The dry fly fishing has been good in the afternoons. Skwalas and March browns have been the ticket. Throw the low-profile skwala. The bigger fish won’t shy away from those bugs.

The Blackfoot: We fished it this week and were pleasantly surprised. The water is very big and off color, but the streamer fishing was good. You had to fish hard and put it in the right spot, but when that happened the streamer got eaten. The Silver and Black Sparkle minnow was the ticket for us.

Rock Creek: Fished well this week. Afternoon dry fly bite was there. They ate the skwala after lunch. A good option for wade anglers looking to get away from the boat traffic on The Bitterroot.

The Clark Fork: Big and off color. Maybe not your best option this weekend. But fish have been caught on the Clark. Skwalas around in the afternoons. Throw the dice and you might be surprised. Another great way to get away from the traffic on The Bitterroot.

Well there it is. if you have any questions about a game plan for fishing this weekend, stop by the Missoulian Angler for any thing. We are glad to help out and point you in the right direction.

-The MAngler

…Because you fish

Bitterroot Brown Trout

Spring Gear Essentials

Missoula Spring Fishing can be a walk in the park. Or not. A lot of the time we see weather. Wet weather, Cold weather, Windy weather. A lot of unfavorable conditions can roll over the mountains quickly. To enjoy a day on the water in the spring you have to be prepared. Prepared with layers, gear, and fishing equipment.

This is  a quick run down of some of the Essential Gear we have here in The Missoulian Angler Fly Shop right now to make your time on the water chasing Skwalas and Trout more productive and enjoyable.

Costa Del Mar Cat Cay

Glasses: New Glass can be a life changer. In the often dark light that spring time comes with it can be hard to see. If you are still wearing the same beat up glasses your wore last hopper season it might be time for some new ones. The new Costa Del Mar Glasses we have here in the shop are amazing. The 580G lenses really seem to make thing look “HD”. If you are in the market for a new pair of shades check out the new Costas. It’s money well spent. In my opinion, the most important piece of fishing gear you own are your glasses. Just ask any Missoula Fishing Guide what they couldn’t spend a day without, and I bet their answer will be their glasses.


HydroFlasks: I can’t talk about these enough. They really are amazing. Stop buying water bottles, thermos’s, and growlers that wear out, break, and don’t work. These things are bomb proof. If you want to keep your beverage hot or cold all day, buy a HydroFlask. I have 3 of them and I never get on the water with out them. They now have a pint glass as well. All the badass features of a normal Hydro, in a pint glass. What more do you want.

Montana TechWool

Simms Montana TechWool Zip Top : From Simms… “A requisite layering piece from Simms’ Montana Wool collection, the new Techwool Zip Top uses local ranch and farm sourced wool fibers for a moisture-dumping, heat-holding beast true to the company’s Made in Montana roots. The clean-wearing top features insulation against the elements thanks to 21-micron wool fibers, while a fleece-lined collar and flatlock stitching provide ultimate next-to-skin comfort for versatile performance on and off the river.” This is an awesome new layer that not only preforms on the river, but it looks nice enough that you can wear it to Plonk or Lolo Peak Brewing for a beverage when you get off the water.

The Other Stuff:

Fly-Agra. It’s a no brainer. If you haven’t switched over to it you are doing yourself a disservice. This stuff is amazing. I will bet you a dozen Skwalas you can’t find a Missoula fly fishing guide bag without Fly-Agra.

The New Zealand Strike Indicator: If you want precision in your nymphing game this should be in you bag of tricks. This system works. If you have bee on the fence about trying it out, just do it. I promise you won’t regret it.

Hoo-Rag: We are now carrying Hoo-rag here at The Missoulian Angler Fly Shop. The newest Seamless Bandana. We have a custom print that looks pretty awesome. You have been inside all winter and if you are anything like me, you look like you haven’t seen the sun in a long time. Don’t let your nose and ears get roasted during a day on the water. They are also great at keeping the wind burn down. If you plan on spending a season on the water, get one. Your ears and nose will thank you.

Flies: We have ’em! Some people say we have the largest fly selection in Missoula. We have over 60 different Streamer patterns and more skwalas than you know what to do with. If you are looking for an awesome fly selection come check ours out. It won’t disappoint. And if you can’t find the bug you have spent years looking for, we do custom fly tying. Just give us an idea and we will crank ’em out for you.

Well there it is. Some spring time gear that makes your day fly fishing in Missoula a little bit better. There is a lot more in the shop that I don’t have time to mention. You will just have to come over and check it all out.

-The MAngler

…Because you fish