Bitterroot Fishing is better in the afternoon

Date
Tuesday, 1 Dec, 2015
Water Clarity
Clear
Angler Traffic
Low
Report
As we move into the winter, you will get more productivity in the afternoon as it warms up. Put away your midges and nymphs until January and get out your princes with a pheasant tail. Make sure they are on the bottom as the trout are not going to move much. Look at the slower tail outs for rising fish. The recent weather has improved the water levels of the river making for better fishing.
 
Fishing Water Report
 (1)
Despite pressures from developers, ranchers and farmers, the Bitterroot, a Class 1 river, remains a haven for fly fishers. Flowing through the scenic Bitterroot Valley, the river is ... moreoften referred to as the “banana belt” of Montana, famous for its year round mild climate. Although the river tends to flow through populated areas and is located within the fastest growing area of the state, it’s still possible to see a wide array of animals along its banks including waterfowl, osprey, bald eagles, heron, white deer and mule deer. Wildlife is especially abundant within the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge, located between Stevensville and Florence.

Like other rivers in Montana, this too has an interesting history. Bitterroot Valley was the ancestral home of the Salish Indians, more commonly known as the Flatheads. The area acquired its name from a plant (later to become Montana’s state flower) that the Salish cultivated and counted on as a major source of food. Father DeSmet, a Jesuit priest, established St. Mary’s Mission here in 1841, and a few years later sold it to John Owen. Owen opened a trading post that over time became Montana’s first permanent, European based settlement, eventually growing into the town of Stevensville. Throughout the remainder of the 19th century, trees were harvested and the river was used to carry logs downstream to Missoula as well as used to support a wide array of agricultural products. Now, aside from sub-divisions, alfalfa is nearly the riverside’s exclusive crop.

Famous for its prodigious insect hatches, the Bitterroot teems with trout. The river carries about 1000 trout per mile, twice that of most similar size rivers, including rainbows, browns and a healthy population of native west-slope, cutthroat trout. This insect rich environment is attributed to the Sapphire Range’s calcium rich, feeder streams that join the Bitterroot and give rise to a large menu of stoneflies, mayflies and caddis. For anyone that might be interested, the river also supports northern pike and largemouth bass in some of its slower moving, backwater currents. A mere 75 miles long, the river passes through several towns including Darby, Hamilton, Corvallis, Victor, Stevensville, Florence, Lolo, ending at Missoula where it combines with the Clark Fork River.
Game Fish Opportunities:
Reporting Outfitter
Located in the prestine Upper Blackfoot River Basin near Lincoln, MT, we offer anglers fully guided fly fishing trips on some of the best fly fishing waters in the world. We and our ... moreteam of experienced, seasoned fly fishing guides strive to provide you with a fly fishing vacation experience that will far-exceed your highest expectations. We offer daytrip guide service, tailored multi-day trip packages with lodging in rental cabins, B&B's and hotels, riverside base tent-camps, and weeklong float fishing trips. Rivers we operate on include the Big Blackfoot River(as in "A River Runs Thru It"), the 30 mile "Blue Ribbon" designated stretch of the Missouri River, Smith River, Dearborn River (all 3 forks), South Fork of the Flathead River in The Bob Marshall Wilderness, Clark Fork River, Clearwater River, Bitteroot River, Rock Creek, and many other smaller streams and area lakes. The combination of breath-taking scenery, some of the best fly fishing waters you will find anywhere, and some of the best fly fishing guides in Montana, ensure you will have the most awesome, memorable, and safe fly fishing vacation you could possibly experience anywhere. Proudly serving anglers since 1997. Member of Montana Outfitters and Guides Association, Montana Fishing Outfitters Association, Montana Chapter Trout Unlimited.
Reported Trip
  • Experienced guide
  • Lunch
  • Drinks
  • Flies
Destination:
Report Location
Start Access Site
Find out about the latest fishing action with our Bitterroot River Fishing Report //
Fishing Water Reports:
Size:
12 acres
Elevation:
3,228 ft
Activities:
Boating, Fishing, Hunting
Boat Services:
Ramp
Sanitation & Water:
Toilet
0 reviews   0 comments
Accuracy
Completeness

Discover Your Own Fishing and Hunting Adventures

With top destinations, guided trips, outfitters and guides, and river reports, you have everything you need.