nice fat rainbow from Madison Flats
After a bouncy fifty three mile run from Quake Lake, the Madison River finallly starts taking a breather. It slows down below the town of Ennis. At Meadow Lake, the water smooths out and things get interesting. Large trout from the lake cruise around sipping dry flies and slurping emerging nymphs. Caddis and mayflys…large callibaetis and tiny tricos…damsel flies and crane flys…they all join the party. Brown and rainbow trout over 20 inches are on the prowl. The fly fisher is surrounded by rise rings, noses, backs and tails, slurpers and sippers.
Heavy morning midge hatch on the Flats
Another big bow taken on a dry fly during overcast on the Flats
I like to wade this fishery. The water is glassy and waist deep. It is classic spot and stalk, closer to bonefishing than trout fishing…more like New Zealand than Montana. Angling methods vary from basic dry fly fishing to slow retrieve nymphing and fast twitching. These fish are large…bring lots of backing. We fish in the morning. We get there in my Lund WC14 Camo with 20HP Yamaha 4-Stroke. We get home dry and safe. This is truly a unique flyfishing opportunity. Join me.
My fly boxes for the flats shown below…
above: my chironomid home-ties phase two!
Above, top to bottom: my olive leech home-tie, damsel fly nymph natural, PT chironomid
The O-Leech and Blood Leech…two deadly patterns on The Flats
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Bill Owen fishing to the rise…Madison Flats