Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 10/13

Missoula Fishing Report 

October 13th

Clouds are in the forecast! Once Friday and the weekend rolls around, we should have some fall weather in the forecast. The fishing should start speeding up, as it has been getting a little better each day. ffishy reporrt

Blackfoot River: H20 is very low. It has undoubtedly made for tough fishing. They are still eating hoppers, as well as hopper-dropper rigs… Streamer fishing can be decent too.

Clark Fork River: There have been some mahogany hatches… hopefully they will be getting better as the cloud coverage comes. Baetis, October caddis, and the rare trico. The Clarky has been looking up lately, and there seem to be more rising fish here. If they aren’t eating dries, try putting on an October caddis pupae imitation. (Bird of Prey, Goldie Hawn, something orange). Olive, white, and black streamers!

Bitterroot River: Hecuba are coming off, as well as some mayflies. Mahoganies are very on and off, but keep an eye out for em. October caddis, BWOs, and baetis. For nymphs, Bird of Prey, Goldie Hawn, Copper Bob/John, orange lightening bugs. Big, dark, junky streamer patterns!

Rock Creek: It has been tricky… Though again, the clouds will help. October caddis are hatching here more than other spots, assuming that they will eat your fly on top. Otherwise.. imitate it on bottom with a nymph. Still eating hoppers and other terrestrials, especially near logs, etc. Mahoganies may be out, baetis, parachute adams, purple haze. Chuck your streamers by the bank and wait for some browns to build up an appetite. Again, browns, white, olives, and black patterns. 

In The News: 

-30% off streamers!

-20% off G4 Boa boots

-It’s that time of year… Come on in and sign up for Fly Tying Classes!

-The MAngler

Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 9/29

Missoula Fishing Report 

October 6th

(No, it does not look like October 5th…)


Lets get down to it… We’ve all been waiting to see true fall fishing around here. The sun is brighter than expected, and we haven’t had very prolific hatches. The fishing is most definitely keeping anglers on their toes. The water has clearly cooled way down despite this odd weather, and it is ideal to get on the water once it hits high 50s to 60 degrees. Hopper-dropper rigs are the answer throughout the afternoon. October caddis are not out in full force, but we are definitely beginning to see some pupae on all three rivers, and it is well worth trying to get ’em on the dries. An October caddis imitation (Goldie Hawn, Bird of Prey) works well with a hopper above it. Ants, beetles, and a hopper of your choice are a great option. Hecuba are here and there, particularly on the Clark Fork and Bitterroot, generally mid morning. As water is still low in a lot of places, keep an eye out for deeper slews and pools. Terrestrials remain a good option on each river, and they seem to get the job done during the afternoon. To the dismay of many, there hasn’t be a load of action up top. Some days are better than others, but with the lack of cloud coverage, nymphs have been turning a lot of fish. If you are after size– streamer game is strong in heavy deep water. Black, white, olive, and browns have worked really well. They are still diggin’ on the sparkle minnows as well.

Blackfoot River: The streamer game has been really active on parts of the Blackfoot. Big junky stuff, mainly. Articulated streamers, woolheads, sparkle minnows. Black, olive, brown, and white. If you see them eating up top… Purple haze (16/18), October caddis, mahoganies (14/16), parachute adams. Terrestrials: Hoppers (10/12), ants, beetles. Throw ’em near logs, wood, etc. Hopper-dropper rig has been a good option. Copper bob, lightening bugs, San Juans, rubber legs, Goldie Hawn, bird of prey.

Clark Fork River: Tricos are trico spinners are on and off. The fish are still hitting hoppers, ants and beetles. Try a hopper followed by your favorite dry. As for nymphs, copper bob, red lightening bugs, Goldie Hawn, bird of prey. Mahoganies, hecuba, PMDs, and baetis.

Bitterroot River: The fishing has been more consistent on the lower Root. They have been all about dark articulated streamer patterns. Along with that, they’re all about the mahoganies on top– it can be hard to predict exactly which pattern works best. Try a few. Mid-day terrestrial action, once the water is warm enough… The Bitterroot is full of logs, fallen trees, branches, etc. Throw them there!! Watch for hecuba and swarms of tricos.

Rock Creek: It has been tricky. White streamers… streamers of all sorts. Big articulated ones, black, brown, sparkly patterns. Terrestrials are worth a shot in the afternoon… But the water is pretty low in a lot of places, and the fish don’t seem to be after dries. Hopper-dropper rig is a good option. If you’re out there later, they seem to be feeding on top right before sunset. Look for deeper pods and heavy H20.

In The News: 

-We’re still booking trips!! Call or stop in and reserve your spot.

-20% off all Simms outerwear!

-20% off G4 Boa Simms boots



Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 9/11

Missoula Fishing Report 

September 11th

Hoot Owl Restrictions are lifted on all three rivers. You are free to fish wherever your wild heart desires! This weekend’s weather forecast is ranging from high 70s to mid 80s. It is surely a great time to get out on the weather and get into some fall fishing while you bask in what’s left of our sunshine. Again, you don’t need to be getting on the water around sunrise these days. Patience is a virtue– wait until nine or ten to wet a line, as the water is much cooler than weeks previous. There will a barbecue at the shop tonight (Friday) at 7 pm! We will be enjoying good food, great company, and celebrating the kick off of fall fishing. Come bring your best jokes, your dog, and your A-game for a round of washers. Someone needs to knock Russell off of his high horse after all these years.


Last night’s sunset was pretty surreal

Blackfoot River: Try throwing your favorite mayfly pattern in the morn’. Look for bigger fish foraging in the tail-out runs. Size 16-20 c0mparaduns, or olives. Mahoganies have been a great fly- try size 16. Alternative options would be a purple haze, or a royal wulff. Terrestrial game is alive and well… Beetles, ants, and hoppers all afternoon. Try throwing some big junky streamers; both dark and bright ones should find their way in your fly box today.

Clark Fork River: Tricos are out, depending on the day, some more than others. They seem to like the sun. This will probably be a great weekend for them. Mayfly patterns work great on overcast days. The fish will be in the skinny inside seams. Hopper-dropper rigs are an option in heavier water. Hi vis spinners, size 16-20 olives, as well as cripples/spun dun. Size 14-16 mahoganies and red rocky mtn mint flies. Size 6-10 hoppers have been killing it throughout the afternoon! We like peach and purple!

Bitterroot River: Great am trico hatches… Followed by an early afternoon with your favorite mayfly pattern. There aren’t many hecuba but they are out and about and the fish are hungry for ’em. For hecuba, cripples, and parachutes, go with a 10-12. Mahoganies are 14-16, olives 16-20. Be sure to have plenty of hoppers.

Rock Creek: The morning seems to produce mainly risers. Size 12-16 mayflies, 10-12 hecuba and royal wulff. Hoppers, ants beetles during the afternoon.Throw them near some wood, logs, etc. If you’re looking to nymph, copper johns, rubberlegs, and worms. The yellow streamers have been doing well on Rock Creek. The fish are after big flashy stuff.

In The News:  

-SHOP BARBECUE AT SEVEN TONIGHT! No better spot to spend a Friday night

-20% off all Simms outerwear clothing

-20% off Simms G4 Boa boots

Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 9/9

Missoula Fishing Report

September 9th 

rainbow hope

Hope with a nice bow she hooked into

Fall fishing has arrived! In addition to this fabulous news, FWP has uplifted any and all restrictions on our beloved rivers! The North Fork, as well as all Blackfoot tributaries, are Hoot Owl-free. Although we are still in the midst of some transition with our summer and fall hatches, the fishing is absolutely killer and we finally got rid of the smoke. We have nothing but good news for the fishing community today. The brown trout are getting eager to spawn, meaning they are more aggressive than they have been in quite some time. Go find out for yourself! On a side not, the water is clearly cooling down drastically. There is no need to rush out on the water like we were during the dog days of summer. It isn’t until nine or ten that the water temps drop to a decent point- and that is when the magic happens. Streamer game is starting to get really hot, as well as the terrestrial game- on all of the rivers.

Blackfoot River: Good Mayfly fishing, especially on cloudy days. Look for big fish foraging in the tail-outs of the deep runs. Try some mayfly patterns in the morning to early afternoon. Size 16-20 comparaduns, olives. Size 16 mahoganies, purple haze, and royal wulff. As before, beetles, hoppers, and ants have been a great option. Chuck some big heavy streamers and you’ll have a chance at getting a hefty fish- be sure to bring both bright streamers and dark ones.

Clark Fork River: Tricos are still hatching! Mayfly patterns on overcast days. Look for fish on those skinny inside seams. The hopper-dropper rigs are good in heavy water. For tricos, try size 18-20 (don’t forget your readers folks), hi vis spinners, olives 16-20, as well as cripples/spun dun. Size 14-16 mahoganies and red rocky mtn mint flies. Again, 6-10 hoppers have still been doing really well throughout the afternoon. We like peach!

Bitterroot: Great am trico hatches… Mayfly stuff in the afternoon. There aren’t many hecuba but they are not and the fish are looking for them. For tricos, size 18-20. For hecuba, cripples, and parachutes, go with 10-12. Mahoganies 14-16, olives 16-20. The terrestrial game is alive and thriving! Parachute hoppers are a great option. Try dark streamers!

Rock Creek: The morning seems to produce mainly risers. Again, don’t waste too much time wetting your line before about 9 am. Try some bigger mayfly patterns… 12s and 14s. Mahoganies from 14-16, and size 10-12 hecuba and royal wulff. Terrestrials: hoppers, ants, beetles. On Rock Creek, look for some wood, logs, etc. to throw these bugs. The fish will be expecting them near those! As for nymphs, throw rubberlegs and worms. We are digging the yellow streamers on The Creek– but be sure to throw some sort of streamer, as the fish are chomping on some big flashy stuff.

In The News:

-Simms outerwear 20% off!

-G4 Boa boots 20% off!

-The MAngler


Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 8/26

Missoula Fishing Report 

August 26th

With fall fishing right around the corner, we’re all getting pretty stoked to change things up. Regardless of the air quality, the fishing has been surprisingly steady. For those who aren’t clear on Hoot Owl Restrictions, they are uplifted on all three rivers. The only exception- the Blackfoot tributaries and the North Fork of the Blackfoot, which shut down from 2 pm to midnight. September fishing is going to be great this year, and guide trips are being booked like crazy. Stop in or call the shop if you’re looking to spend a day on the water this fall!

Summer smog

Summer smog on a Clark Fork evening. Different kind of beauty?

Blackfoot River: The fish aren’t being real picky with streamers. They’ll eat your sparkle minnows, some brighter colors, or darker streamers. If you’re fishing before 10 am, a hopper-dropper is a good way to go. After that, hoppers. Anything from size 8 to 12 should get you into a fish. As the Blackfoot is running low on water, fish will be searching for the deepest, coolest water.

Bitterroot River: The fish are more likely to eat a trico on the lower stretch of the Root. Hecubas are now a great option. Yellow sallies, purple haze, drakes, and baetis. Get your hands on some of those before taking on the Bitterroot. During the afternoon, you already kn0w… Terrestrial game till the cows come home.

Clark Fork: Despite confusion, the entire Clark Fork is open all day long. Again, some tricos and hecubas. Mayflies, attractor patterns, and lots of hoppers. Caddis hatch in the evening. The smoke has actually created a sort of cloud coverage. That is particularly good for fishing on the Clark Fork.

Rock Creek: Hopper-dropper rigs. Ants, beetles, and other terrestrials are rippin’ lips, especially when fished near some sort of wood, log jam, etc. The streamer game has been steady on Rock Creek. Sparkle minnows, and more colorful streamres. October caddis pupaes are starting to move to the shallows, and they’ll be getting ready to hatch here in the next few weeks. That goes for the Blackfoot and Clark Fork as well.

In The News:

-20% off ALL Simms outerwear clothing

-20% off Simms G4 Boa boots

-30% off all streamers (We have loads of ’em)

-We’ve restocked our hats and Mangler shirts!

-The MAngler

Missoula Fishing Report

Missoula Fishing Report 8/23

Missoula Fishing Report 

August 23rd

It’s Sunday Funday… Annnnd the Upper Clark Fork is now free of Hoot Owl Restrictions. Apart from the tributaries on the Blackfoot, you may fish wherever, whenever. The water is cool, and the bigger fish are surely ready to munch on your flies. Whatever you do, don’t forget your box of terrestrials… Regardless of where you’re going.


Early morning– en route to the Madison River.

Blackfoot River: Throw some dries in the morning. Purple haze, parachute adams, mayflies. Once it starts warming up more, turn to hoppers, ants, and beetles. Drift them through the spots with logs, dams, etc. The Blackfoot is still super low, so the fish are all piling up to “chill out”. If you see one eat, it is probably not alone. Caddis hatch in the evening. Try some dark streamers throughout the day.

Bitterroot River: Tricos, tricos, and more tricos. It has been tough to know exactly when they hatch, but they have been digging the sun. There could still be some yellow sallies around as well, along with baetis. Later on, try a hopper-dropper, some attractor patterns, and any sort of terrestrials. Ants, beetles, and hoppers are all great options. As usual, the caddis will be hatching in the evening. Elk hair will do you well.

Clark Fork River: Often times, the Clark Fork is the best option with cloud coverage. The smoke has been creating an odd smog that is having similar effects. It could actually make for a great day on the Clark. As with the Bitterroot, the fish seem to be eating tricos early on. Mayfly patterns as well… You just kind of have to watch for those throughout the day. During the evening, you know the drill. Caddis till the cows come home.

Rock Creek: Purple haze, parachute adams, and terrestrials. Sparkle streamers, and bright streamers, drug through deeper and heavier water. That is what will get you a big one.

In The News: 

-20% off all Simms outerwear clothing (We have men’s and women’s… Surprise your honey!)

-20% off Simms G4 Boa boots

-Looking to book a trip in September!? They’re filling up! Call us or stop in to the shop…

-Hats and shirts are restocked!! Come get ’em! We have tons of colors are sizes…