Yellowstone Bound

Part Six

September 20th to October 31st.

By Bob Jacklin

Hebgen Lake

Along with the fall run of brown trout out of Hebgen Lake, we have the added pleasure of a fall run of hard-hitting, hard-fighting, and large rainbow trout. These fall run rainbows will also average from two to three pounds with some larger. Most of the fishing in late fall is on the upper Madison River near West Yellowstone. Both spawning brown and rainbow trout will work upstream out of Hebgen Lake as they look for the choicest spawning areas. The browns will spawn in late October and November. The rainbows are also on a spawning run, but they will not spawn until mid-winter, far up the Madison River in Yellowstone Park.

The portion of the Madison River which runs through Yellowstone Park is one of the spawning run hot spots during October. From the junction of the Gibbon and Firehole Rivers to the Park line and down into Hebgen Lake, there is about 16 miles of quality water, most of which is paralleled by a Park road. The Firehole, Gibbon, and the South Fork of the Madison also have fall runs of brown trout. This time of the year, the Firehole River fishes best on cloudy, rainly, or snowy conditions. Have some Blue Wing Olives, sizes 16, 18, and 20, for some great dry fly fishing.

Horseshoe Bend, Firehole River

The Missouri River offers some great fall float fishing for large brown and rainbow trout. This unique and beautiful tailwater fishery presents the angler a rare opportunity of catching large trout on dry and wet flies. The fall run browns average three to four pounds, with the possibility of even larger trout. Over the years, trout as large as 5, 6, and even 7 pounds have been taken on our fall guided trips to the Missouri. Along with the browns, the Missouri River also offers the angler some of the best dry fly fishing for wild rainbows. This fall is our twelfth year of guiding fishermen on the Missouri River. I think it is one of the finest fisheries in Montana, and our guides and I look forward to September and the fall fishing on the big Mo.

The lower Yellowstone near Livingston, Montana is a favorite fall fishery. Here the river is large with deep runs and big brown trout, a grear river for floating. Deep wading and long casting with big streamers are the ticket here. Special regulations on this section of river are helping bring back good population of wild Native Cutthroat Trout to the lower Yellowstone.

Fall weather is unpredictable. One day the temperature could be up in the 60's, the next day there could be five inches of snow. On cold days, the temperature can get below freezing, however, the fishing is good. Insulated underware, neoprene waders, a good warm hat, warm clothing, and warm gloves are a good investment for such weather. The key word here is warm, when fall fishing Montana and Idaho, the area I call Yellowstoneland.

Stop at the shop if you'd like an experienced guide, appropriate flies, or more information on our fine fishing opportunities.~ Bob Jacklin

More On Yellowstone Park

Reservation Links for Yellowstone Country!
Spring Season: Late May to June 20th
Summer Season! June 20 to August 1
Late Summer: August 1 to August 31
Early Fall: September 1 to September 20th
Late Fall: September 20th to October 31st
Slough Creek Pack Trip

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