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Guest Blog: The River that Makes No Sense

The River That Makes No Sense…..



            Nicky Acosta and I were grabbing dinner at the Mccallister Inn after a day on the Madison. I was commenting that I had worked an island that looked perfect. The water in front it formed a perfect shelf with good depth plus good current. The water below and to the side of the island was the same. I had taken fish in a lot less likely spots that day, and yet, the spot produced nada. Perplexed, I said “that makes no sense.” Nicky looked at me and replied, “Scrunch, it’s the Madison…it makes no sense.” Hmmm....that’s as good a description of the Madison as I have ever heard, the river that makes no sense.

            Often clients who are used to fishing other rivers will look confused and ask where to cast. They say there is no structure, no discernable feature that delineates where a fish might lay. One client said, “When I get back to the Bitterroot, I’m gonna hug a root wad!” We all laughed, but most of us thought that the first time we fished the Madison.

            Nicky and I also talked about the bugs we had used.  My best fly had been a big dark rubber legs. Nicky said he had success on a smaller tan rubber legs, but, “they only wanted it behind Grand Master Flash.” I nodded while actually wondering “what the hell is a Grand Master Flash?” Again I said, “that makes no sense!”  Nicky just smiled. I guess being born on this river one gets used to the idea that it makes no sense.

            I guess I’ll just have to wait for a few more years until I can look at someone and smile and say, “Dude, It’s the Madison... It makes no sense.”


Chris Stroup

Uncle Scrunchie Posted by Uncle Scrunchie

Uncle Scrunchie or Chris is a former long hair and one of our statewide guides who splits time between the motherland of Missoula and gods country in the Madison Valley.  Like his residence his fishing and mind are unsettled.

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