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Madison River Fishing Report 3/5/2021

Although this week has felt like Spring, winter is still in full swing over here on the Upper Madison River. Luckily for us that means plenty of elbow room on the river.

This can be one of our favorite times of the year to fish solely due to the solitude that can be had on the river. As far as fishing goes cold water pushes trout into deep slow runs often found behind boulders and elbow bends. Fish stack up in places like these and pods can often be found in the hundreds.

Whats Working

Fishing stonefly, midge, egg, and worm patterns make nymphing an easy bet while the ambitious large trout could chase a streamer. However, during this time of year fish do not like to move a whole lot. So be prepared to change the depth of your rig often by adjusting your indicator and adding/removing split shot.

Dries?

On warmer days where there is no wind (which doesn’t happen often), fish can be found slurping midge clusters on the surface. Small Mating Midge and Griffith’s Gnat patterns will get the job done in these circumstances. Patience is key when throwing dry flie

Hiking and Wading up high is a great way to get into warmer water and slow pockets where fish are stacked up.

s this time of year. Fish don’t like to move much and when they do, their eat is extra slow. Waiting an extra half second on your hook set could be key. This time of year, cloud cover is key. Fish are in this lethargic state the last thing they want to do is look straight into a hot sun. I mean would you want to look straight into the sun after waking up from a long nap?

Be Careful out There

Another thing to be aware of is large chunks of ice that may have broken off upstream. These ice barges can prove dangerous especially if you aren’t paying attention. Being aware on the river is even more important this time of year as any slip or fall could end up in a potentially hazardous situation. Bringing along an extra set of dry cold weather clothes and fishing with a partner is highly recommended if you choose to reap the benefits of winter fishing on the Madison river. After all there is plenty of room to spread out this time of year.

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Dries

Mating Midge, Parachute Midge, Griffith's Gnat, Para BWO

Nymphs

Glo Bug, Silver Lightning Bug, Squirmy Wormy, Tung Jig Pheasant Tail, San Juan Worm, Tung Jig Hare’s Ear, Flash Prince, Crystal Meth.

Streamers

Olive Sculpzilla, Black Sex Dungeon, Pearl Zonker, Butt Monkey, Sparkle Minnow, Wooly Bugger.

Fishing Reports and Trips

  • Fishing Reports

  • Want to know the most up-to-date information to find where the fish are biting? The Tackle Shop Fishing Reports provide you with a comprehensive look at current water conditions, recent hatches and flow data from the U.S. Geological Survey.

  • View Reports
  • Float Trips

  • The Tackle Shop offers a range of full-day and half-day float trips in the Madison River Valley area. The trips are all-inclusive and cover files, rods, reels, waders and boots. Leave your worries behind and let us give you the fly fishing trip of a lifetime.

  • View Trips
  • Walk/Wade Trips

  • Enjoy one of our full-day or half-day walk and wade trips for a more immersive, slower-paced fly fishing experience. The Tackle Shop will cater to your individual needs so you are able to take in the sights and sounds of the best waters in Montana.

  • View Trips
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