Friday, December 26, 2014

ROOT SPORTS 9 A.M. DEC.28-RFO on the tube!

Joe Rossi from Joe's Wildside Adventures will be featuring RFO on this week's episode. If you like streamer fishing then this is a must see! ROOT Sports on Direct TV. Thank you JOE!

Friday, November 14, 2014

Missoula Montana Fly Fishing-Spring Booking Specials

Summer breeze, makes me feel fine...
So it's cold. Really, really cold. Furry mammals like us shouldn't live at these latitudes during the winter months. But there is a a light at the end of the tunnel: Skwalas! In four short months there will be big trout that will come to the big dry.  Only 4 months! As usual, we are running our spring fishing special package. For two anglers including lodging and guided fishing: $450 per day. Valid dates-March 15-April15
On the other hand, you could drill a hole in a frozen lake, lower a tasty bit down the hole, and wait. And wait. And wait. 

Your call.


Friday, October 17, 2014

Montana Fly Fishing Report

   The season is winding down, but the fishing continues to be very good.  The weekenders are gone and the tubers have hung up their tubes, along with their limited cognitive abilities. Hooray!

   We have had happy anglers in all of the guides' boats, with many trophy-sized fish coming to net. Our waters of choice have been the lower Clark Fork, lower Bitterroot and the Missouri. Best bugs continue to be October caddis patterns, #14 purple haze, #18 MagDel baetis. There have been some baetis around, as well as a ton of pseudos. Adult October caddis are out sporadically, too. The point is, if you hunt around you will find risers. But I know that some of you only know how to chase colorful plastic orbs around the middle of the river. Maybe it's time to evolve. If you want to hang a dropper try the #16 peep show, #18 zebra midge, or just go old school and tie on a P.T. Rock Creek has been good with the purple haze, black buggers and Wulff patterns being the best bets. Think twitchy/skating if you head up the crick. The weather is great, and looks to be staying that way, so you might consider one last fix. This is the best October fishing that the RFO team has seen in a number of years. It's only a matter of time before it gets nasty.
Joe W. with a streamer caught Missouri River brown.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Montana Fly Fishing Traffic Report- say hello to the latest invasive species, the Innertubulas Idioticus.

Traffic on the morning commute-Somewhere near Ovando, MT

When the great floods last came, the humans divided into two groups; half ran to high ground to escape the terrifying water. The other half grabbed the urinary bladders of stegosaurus' that they had fed upon and floated away upon the biblical waters. As time went on (over millions of years) the dry-land humans continued to evolve. The bladder-folks continued on their path toward stupidity and lemming-like selectivity. At this point in human evolution there was a massive split in the progress of man. Advance one million years, and you will find a sunday afternoon on the Blackfoot river.  These hominids can be seen today on any warm afternoon on the Blackfoot River near Missoula, MT. There is no Earthly reason why they haven't been picked off by tigers, vultures and hamsters.  They aren't smart, but they are lucky!  We have deduced that they stay afloat not by their inner-tube devices, but rather by the air in their heads. What a discovery!!! If you see them loafing lazily in the sun, consider this a tremendous occasion. It's like seeing a beer can on the road. You should probably youtube it.  They're a dime a dozen. Please report these other "humans" to your local MTFWP officer. Chances are good that they can be found following a steady stream of Subaru Outbacks and/or Honda CRvs. with inner-tubes, strapped lazily atop their parents' last car.   They might even be littering, or copulating in the bushes. God help us!

   Seriously MTFWP, why don't these knuckleheads need PFDs in their "boats"? Oh, and why don't the suppliers need a SRP for the outfitting of these folks?  Never an answer. Never.
Hey, at least we tried, eh?

In the end, there will be cockroaches and "toobers". They will survive and multiply, given enough White Claw and poorly inflated swan toobs. Someday Montana FWP will hold the public to some account for their toll on our Montana rivers. Until then, I will continue to rant about the devastating effects that "toobers" have on our collective world. "Toobing" should rank right up there with murder and tax evasion!
Thank you Michelin, latex, and the obvious lack of condoms somewhere in the 80's. Here they are. And here they will stay. 

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Rock Creek/Blackfoot River Fishing Reports

Drilling a few before I drag the boat over. The creek is happenin'!
ROCK CREEK- The fishing has been very, very good. Our best flies have been a 6/8 Chubby with a touch of pink/yellow/black on the under-side, smaller orange stimi, para-drake in 10.   The fish have moved off of the bank a bit with the drop in flow. Yesterday the green drakes came off in a big way. We found nice fish in the braids and they were very willing. As for the big jam, it's really not too bad. Just pay attention.  Also, did anyone lose an oar around mile 23 recently? If so, send a note with a description.  If not, then I guess I have yet another oar to put in the pile.
BLACKFOOT RIVER- The salmon flies have been out here and there. Rubberlegs in 6/8, pink and red worms, halloween buggers have all been doing the trick. If you want to toss a dry around, think BIG.  Fish the heavy twitch and you might drum up a little biz. Look to the big olive, pumpkin, tannish streamers to move some nice fish. The flows look great and the best fishing is yet to come. Stay tuned.
MISSOURI RVER-The fish are tuned into to a bunch of winged critters. Caddis, PMD and sallys are on the daily menu. As usual, there isn't any real reason to go chase bobbers around at the damn dam. If you want to hang a dropper off of a dry, try peepshow 16/18, czechs in 14/16. The flows are low and the fish are hungry. There has been no shortage of rising fish each day. Simply put, the fishing on the Mo' is very good.

The Blackfoot River has been pretty hit or miss. There are a few reports about adult salmon flies in the canyon. This is the time to gamble on insects, and once in awhile it pays big. Look to everything below Sperry for some big'un opportunities. On the big sweeping inside seams try Rubberlegs #8, SJ Worms in red/pink, girdle bugs. Don't be afraid to use a bit of lead. In California it's highly toxic, but once you cross sate lines it's not that bad. Use some.  Streamer-wise, try olive/yellow, pumpkin, tan. Think about how you fish 'em. If the straight strip isn't doing it, then try a dragging or jigging presentation. I don't get why people keep fishing a fly the same way, cast after cast, when it isn't working. If you want to fish a dry, fish a big one on a twitch. It is a matter of time before they start murdering the dry. If you see kayakers and/or inner-gubers, try to hook them in the nose-ring with a massive streamer. We are offering a bounty. Seriously, they suck.


Saturday, June 7, 2014

Rock Creek Fly Fishing Report

There are salmonflies out on Rock Creek.  They seem to be thickest below mile 35, but the fish were on the dry above that today. Stop in to Trout Bums at mile 8 and pick up a few big ol' dries.  If you still insist on staring at a plastic bobber ( yeah, it's been a while since we have seen a trout eat a dry fly) you can try a pink or red worm, rubber legs in gown/black #8, big prince. They were into that from mile 50-40. There are some nice fish looking up now, but it isn't the every cast mayhem that will ensue in the next few weeks. If you can put 30-40 in the net on dries, it has been a good day. The flow is big and pushy, but if you actually use your over-priced oars you can do it.
IF YOU GO: Listen, I know that you all think that rowing is easy and getting down a debris filled, raging creek is no biggie. The creek will eat your lunch if you slack off. Seriously, it will.  There is a horrific log-jam at about mile 28. Please get out and scout if you think things are sketchy. It wasn't that long ago that a life was lost on the creek.
BLACKFOOT RIVER: I have heard some reports about some fishing. Try rubber legs in 8/black/brown and the mighty pink worm. Olivey/yellow streamers might turn a big one. There isn't much slow water, which is where all of the trout are right now, so when you find it you better pound it. This one should come around in the next couple of weeks.
ALSO, what is the deal with stickers? Why are so many people covering their trucks/boats/coolers/buttocks with stickers? I saw a guy today that had so many stickers on his boat that I thought he was rowing a quilt.


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Missoula Montana Fly Fishing Report

Slabby McSlabberson
In the Missoula area fly fishing is about done. Run-off has really traken hold and the rivers look huge and muddy and HUGE!  We fished Rock Creek a bit last week. It was quick, but clear. The best bugs were #10 prince,  #6 white streamers, SJ worm in red. There were a few March Browns kicking around but the fish weren't really on them. Now the water is really up. You might find a little nymphing on the insides, but be careful wading. The road received its annual Brazilian; smooth as a baby's bottom. There is some stubble in a few spots, but other than that it's ship-shape. Thanks USFS.  

Last week we were on the Missouri. All of the usual stuff was working. We caught some big fish jig-twitching brown buggers. Also, we avoided chasing bobbers by fishing dries with long droppers. Peep shows, Czechs, Green Machines about 36" down. The flows continue to look really good over there. Oh yeah, the Caddis-fest was this past weekend. A Caddis-fiesta with no caddis? I'm thinking Thingamabobba-fest next year. Who's in?

We haven't ventured to Georgetown yet. There are some trips on the schedgy soon and I think the lake might be an option. If you go, try any #14 nymph in your box about 3 feet under a SMALL indicator. olive buggers will work, too. You might luck out and find a few callibaetis. In that case, try a parachute adams. Listen, if you can't catch fish there maybe you should consider another past-time. Golf, or perhaps geo-caching might be up your alley.

The Clark Fork has been great beginning at about 11 each morning. The fish have been up on tricos until 2 and then they are more than happy to attack a hopper. Ooops...      I just started day-dreaming about dry fly fishing. The good news is that we won't have any of the hoot-owl closures this summer. Uhh, I'm thinking that there will be plenty of water.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Missoula Fly Fishing Report and Montana Streamflow Link

CHEESE-HEAD makes good on his first trip to Montana!
Missouri River: It's getting big! The water looks good. We had a bunch of guides on it for the last week and the fishing was good. Look to the czech nymph, hot bead, zebra. Fish 'em on a 7 ft rig with a little weight. The dry fly bite has been spotty, to say the least. We have had some skwala fishing but it's been sporadic. The streamer bite has had moments. Try a bigger white coffee fly, sex dungeon in white, tan and black DBX. Fish them slowly  on the edge of visibility.

Clark Fork River:  The water looks pretty good. We had some luck with buggers, princes, SJ worms.  As much as I despise nymphing, sometimes you just gotta do it.  Also, look  to the big slow swirls for risers in the afternoons. March Browns and fluttering stones have been starting to show so it might be smart to put a few in your pocket. With water this big you can fish 3x to your nymphos and 2x to your dries.  Remember, if you get a small, fixable tangle on your nymph rig just shake it vigorously until it looks like a Chinese finger puzzle. Our clients did this a bunch this week and it really seemed to work well.

Rock Creek: The fishing on da crick has been good. SJ worms, princes, small yellow/olive streamers, buggers, skwalas, March browns. It is looking really good. Our guys had fun there this week and it should hold on until things get warmer. This is a good bet if you want to go stomp around for a few hours.  Take extra care if you decide to float it. The water is quite low but  it can still be dangerous.
Stop in and see Deb at Trout Bums (mile 8) for the latest scoop. She has bugs and great coffee!

There will continue to be good fish as long as the snow stays up high. My advice is to watch the flows and take advantage of it while we have it.

Keep an eye on the flows here:
ROCK CREEK:,00065,00010



BLACKFOOT RIVER:,00065,00010

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Missoula Fly Fishing Reports-I lost my razor last September

BITTERROOT RIVER REPORT: There have been a few skwalas out. Our guides had good dry fly fishing last week. The river bumped a few days ago and the dry fly bite took a hit. The boats are very cloggy in the middle reaches. If you go: Try fishing somewhere besides Bell to Stevensville. I talked to the local biologist and he said that there are fish in the entire river. We looked into it and it's true. 
CLARK FORK RIVER REPORT:We had some decent fishing this week. The dries were working and then it came up and went off color. My suspicion is that the rains will knock everything out for a bit. If you find midgers they will eat the skwala.  Try brown buggers, 12/14 princes, skwalas, zebra droppers. We just can't      

bring ourselves to tie on the SJ worm. Nope.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Missoula Fly Fishing Report-Boaty! Boaty! Boaty!

So at about 10 this morning I pulled into an access on the Bitterroot River. I gotta tell you, it was nothing short of disturbing. There were about 9 in, and another 4 on the deck. What in the world possesses someone to go ahead and put their boat in after they KNOW that there are already a dozen in?  Best of luck, compadre.
   So the skwalas have made a decent attempt at an emergence. There have been a few here and there, but these damn cold H2O night temps have kept this whole thing at bay. Doesn't really matter; the masses have descended. Everyone is hoping that the bite will be "sick" and that the oodles of knuckleheads plowing the water won't matter.
   If you eat 3 Valium and go anyway,  here's the scoop:  12/14 prince under a skwala. If they won't eat the prince or the skwala then try something else. But they should eat that. Seriously.
BLACKFOOT RIVER: Pretty cold. If you have to fish a fish a dry fly go somewhere else. If you can tolerate cold and ice and leftover snow, try a double bead with a red worm. Streamer-wise, go darker before lighter. Olive-ish-ness is always a good bet. Slow and low, for sure. We used to drill them on a low riding yellow marabou muddler.
CLARK FORK RIVER: Still rather big and dirty. I would seriously think about going elsewhere. If you do think you are more awesome than the environment, try a worm/prince combo or bugger-ish stuff fished low and deep and slow. The water's still wicked cold.      Corn, there's always corn.
ROCK CREEK: It should be great right now. The skwala nymphs should be starting to move up to the shallows and there should be a few midges out on the nicer days.  Visit Deb at Trout Bums for more accurate info. We haven't been on the creek in a while.  Or call them @ 406-825-6146.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Bitterroot River, Montana Fly Fishing Report-better than yard-work!

Bitterroot River Brownie not caught on a skwala. 

Considering that we have a bunch of fly fishing trips coming up soon, I figured it might be a sweet idea to go poke around the Bitterroot and see about the skwalas. Here's the scoop:
You might read that there are bugs out. There are NOT. We saw one very cold, very lonely adult out today. He drifted down a primo seam. That's it. He just drifted down the seam.
You might also hear that the dry  fly fishing is good. It is NOT. The boats that we talked to day were very excited about the 2 dry fly hits they had had. Yep, two...
   But seriously, the water looks sweet and there is plenty of it. There is so much fishy water that once it gets cookin' it will be good. With night temps in the high teens it could be a while. We caught a few on the good old prince. We caught a few more on a midge. The risers that we found were eager to eat the small bug. We had one come up and nudge a skwala pattern and then swim off, laughing. Not because the fake looked bad, but rather because it seemed so unlikely. Bring a thermos and mittens if you go 'cause it's gonna be on the cool side. Oh, and we saw a dude belly-crawl up to the edge of a nice bank and then flick his thingamacan'tcastitbobba off the edge. I don't believe I've ever seen someone do the stealth thing only toss a plastic ball, lead and two flies into 6 feet of water.  There so many spots where you can stand up and fish.

The Woodside diversion looks extra evil right now. I heard tell that it ate a boat about a week ago. Just portage the dam thing. (Get it?)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Missoula Montana Fly Fishing Report ( and some fun from the Missouri,eh?)

Yep. We're going fishing!
This was highway 200 headed up over Rogers Pass. One might ask why in the world we would drive through this kind of weather just catch a trout? One of our best customers from Calgary decided he need to scratch the itch a bit, after an insanely long Canadian winter. Too much back-bacon and Tim Horton's makes the soul restless. Anyway, he drove down on monday morning.
   Prickly Pear was roaring as we pulled into Wolf Creek. With all of the low-elevation snow and rain as of late, the first taste of un-off had begun. We would learn from the gang in Craig that the Dearborn was totally blown and the middle and lower river was shot. So off to the dam we went.

This Canuck can get it done!

   It was the usual fare. A # 12 czech with a short dropper, like an #18 zebra or #14/16 hot bead whatever,  took fish on nearly every good drift. Water temps were in the mid-30s. Clarity was great but there were releases both days. I would expect the flows to fluctuate. There is a ton of water coming into the upper reservoirs.
   We fished casually but effectively, and by the end of the day we had caught enough to be bored.  Plus, it was really freaking cold and rainy. How many frozen Canadians does it take to catch a trout? Just one, apparently. So it was off to Cascade for a warm drink, hot meal and some much needed sleep.

Someone finally ordered it!


The Driftwood Bar has long made some of the finest bar burgers east of the continental divide. In recent years they have featured a sandwich called "The Hutterrite". Now, I have never, ever seen anyone order this thing. But on this night our good Canadian friend decided that he had to. Long story short, he finished it. Oh, and he washed it down with most of a box of Nilla wafers. Impressive.

   If you ever want to actually meet this guy you can give Bow River Adventures a ring.  He is the owner. At least until he keels over from a massive heart attack. Clear!

This was the fish of the trip.

Day two found us sitting in the sunshine, contentedly drilling trout after trout. I thought the fishing was better, even in the sun. It was the same story, same rig, more fish. As much as I don't like to nymph, we had to do it. The pay-off was well worth it.

   So if you made it this far into this post, here's the scoop on the Missoula fishing:

BITTERROOT RIVER:  Blown!!!! The water is high and might come down this week. We have had so much valley snow and it is all melting.
CLARK FORK: Blowner than the 'root.
BLACKFOOT RIVER: Blown and wintery. We drove by it last night and it was mocha-licious and looking cold. Ice to the water's edge and raging. Don't bother.
Think warm thoughts for the rest of the month. The Bitterroot might come in. If it does, it's gonna be awesome. Big flows, fewer wade dudes, and trout that haven't been assaulted for a month. It is nice to get all of the early season pressure off the river. There's always a silver lining, eh?

Friday, January 24, 2014

Missoula Fly Fishing Report 1/24/14

Clark Fork River on Thursday
Missoula weather has been very conducive to fly fishing as of late. The Bitterroot river has been seeing some traffic, according to one of our guides who lives on the river. The Clark Fork has been great for the wade anglers in the afternoon.  You can try to pull a streamer on these waters but really the temp is a bit cold.  Try #12/14 BH Prince, BH Stones in appropriate colors to imitate the skwala nymphs.  Zebra midges might come in handy once you stumble upon risers.  Don't expect huge numbers, but if you don't hack it up you can put a few in the net.

Here is a link to our snow-pack reports. Make of it what you will.          

          SNOW PACK  ------->

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

You can go fly fishing in Montana NOW!

A couple of our guides have been out fishing in the past few weeks. There has been a midge emergence on the milder days and the fish have been on them. Jeremy Kneeland did well on Friday with several to the net. He said the best bug was a prince dropped off of some pink scud-thing that he ties.  The Bitterroot and Missouri might be good places to hit if you need to wet a line.  Griffith's gnat, small thread midges, small princes etc. I'd skip the mornings and focus on the warmest parts of the day. If you're on the Missouri look at the water near the dam.  Zebra midges, rainbow czech, pink amex should do the trick if you don't mind watching a pink bobber all day.  We have had guide trips in the past few years in late January, and our clients have had consistently good fishing. It's not for wimps, however.

Spring is on it's way and it's time to start thinking about skwalas. If you have never been in western Montana for this hatch, I would highly suggest trying to make the trip. This is when we take some of the largest trout of the entire year.

Everyone wish Zach Lazzari well on his adventure to Chile. He scored a guiding gig for the next couple of months. Never fear- he will be returning in mid-March, just on time for the Skwala hatch. We look forward  having him back for the 2014 season.