Mid July Madison River Fishing Report

Dry Fly

If you are a dry fly fisherman on the Madison River now is the time to get after it.  Golden stone, PMD, caddis of every shape and color are all out there for the fish.   The problem is finding which one they will key on today.  One day they like the caddis, the next the parachute may fly and the third the yellow sallie.  It depends on the day so be ready with all three.  The best bet for the dry fly guy is to throw a sallie with a caddis or a may fly trailer.  It covers most of the bases.  Good dry fly fishing right now. Get after it while it lasts.  Bring your 4X as you will need it to float the small stuff.   Who knows if we are going to get hoppers.  Try and find one right now.  I bet you cant.  The river is still busy especially at the float section with lots of guided trips out.  Remember everyone is there for a good time and lets all play well together.

Bobbers and beads

For those nymph guys you can really rack up the numbers.  Mayfly and caddis nymphs are the best.  We like the CDC prince and a pheasant tail.  Keep them small and on 3X and you should do fine.  The river is dropping so short leash is the best especially if your fishing one of those jig nymphs as they are super heavy.



There are some big browns looking for streamers right now.  We like the natural colored sculpin patterns dead drift down the middle.  Some of our guides are getting some serious fish looking for the big meal.   Trail it with a prince nymph or lightning bug and you will be good to go.  You might not get as many bites as the nymph or dry fly guys but it will be worth it.  Trust us on that.


Madison Flows

The current Madison River flow is 1270 CFS at Kirby Ranch and 1530 CFS at Varney. This is a good level and slightly above average for this time of year.  Expect the folks at the dam to decrease flows at the end of the month and it to go to 1000 or so.  This will be ideal as the wade fisherman get more access and the head space for the dry fly bite is better.   Lots of good fishing to be had in this great summer.  It just keeps staying really good on the Madison River.   Stop by the store for the latest intel from our guides and the best bugs.   Happy summer enjoy it as Montana winters are long.

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
Scroll to Top