The Tackle Shop has been named The Orvis' 2017 Outfitter of the Year!

Bitterroot River Skwala Hatch 4-6-2015

Bitterroot River Skwala Hatch 4-6-2015

Even with the cold weather we have been having the world famous skwala hatch on the Bitterroot River is going strong.   We are over in the Missoula Area chasing the skwala hatch and guiding.  Today we decided to try the Bitterroot River on one of it upper stretches hoping the smaller water would warm quicker and also the large population of west slope cuts would play nice with the dry fly.   Today started cold with frequent light snow showers and no fish looking up for the dry fly. We did manage to catch several fish before lunch on dropper nymphs hung behind the dry.  We had the best luck with a small rubber leg in size 10-12 hung about 2.5 feet behind the dry.  

Fishing in the morning was tough and we needed to make the most of every opportunity.  The fish primarily came off slow inside bends and in the cushion behind rocks and logs.  

Around one we were getting hungry so we stopped for lunch, the sky cleared and the sun came out. The temps felt like it rose 10 degrees.  While we were eating lunch and admiring the change  in weather we notices some skwala  dry scurrying around the rocks near water level.  We just knew it was just a matter of time.  We also noticed a good hatch of grey drakes starting.  

After lunch we switched to two dry fly's.  The first being a skwala imitation and the second a drake imitation much like a large parachute adams.   As soon as we were on the water we started turning fish on drys.  As the afternoon  went we caught fish on dry's in all the usual spots.  Slow inside turns, behind rocks and logs, on fast outside bends and in the shelf drop offs.  

We never caught any really big fish but several in the 16-18 range.  We caught beautiful westslope cuts, rainbows and browns on every bend in the river.  As the sun set behind the Bitterroot Range  the fish decided to turn in for the nigh and shut off quickly.  

With the forecast for improving weather for the next few days and three more days of guiding lined up before a break we are expecting more great fishing.  If you can get to the Bitterroot in the next week or so you should do it as the fish are really starting to look up.  

John Way Posted by John Way

Guide, Outfitter and chief bottle washer for the Tackle Shop.  Recently developing his inter web ninja skills. 

Products related to this article





Related Articles

Outside Bozeman and The Tackle Shop Fly Tying Video
Here is a great video from Outside Bozeman and The Tackle shop on tying one of our special spring stone flies.  This is a great pattern for the spring skwala and nemora stone fly on the local rivers.  ..
0 comments on this article - view comments
Fishing Report Upper Madison River 4-4-2015

The Madison River Keeps producing day in and day out.  There are lots of rainbows in the river right now and fishing is really good.  Mostly a nymphing game with some dry fly in the afternoon. 

0 comments on this article - view comments
Bitterroot River Skwala Hatch 4-7-2015

Another great day on the Bitterroot River chasing the skwala hatch.   Bigger fish were eating dry fly's today.  

0 comments on this article - view comments
Bitterroot River Skwala Hatch 4-8-2015

Another great day of dry fly fishing on the Bitterroot River.   

0 comments on this article - view comments
5 Things The Government Doesn't Want You To Know About Spring Skwalas
Time to shake the frost off of your waders and start thinking about Spring fishing. The warmer days have me excited to get out there. Many anglers overlook early Spring as a time of hatches, though all year round we have to pay attention to the active bugs. Too many bugs get overlooked. In my opinion, the Skwala is one of those bugs. Many rivers across the west and Pacific Northwest get p..

1 Comments To "Bitterroot River Skwala Hatch 4-6-2015"

Randy On 01.04.2016
"Dries", not "dry's." Reply to this comment
Showing 1 to 1 of 1 (1 Pages)

Write a comment

Your Name:
Enter the code in the box below:
Your Comment:
Note: HTML is not translated!