Madison River

Dam: 776 cfs

Kirby: 819 cfs

Varney: 875 cfs

Fishing on the Upper Madison has been fairly steady over the last few days, and the extra cloud cover has been a big help in keeping water temperatures at more reasonable levels.  The wade section between Quake and Lyon’s has been a relative ghost town as far as human traffic is concerned, so those of you looking for a little mid-summer solitude can actually find it on the Madison if you take a little walk up or down from your favorite access point.  We are still seeing decent numbers of caddis and Epeorus spinners most nights, but expect the number of visible adults to dwindle the further you get below $3 Bridge at this point in the season.  The hopper and ant bite up high has also picked up a little, and a Brown Ant Acid trailed behind a #12 Morrish Hopper or a #14 Grand Hopper has been the ticket for more than a few customers during the afternoon hours.  On the subsurface side of things, we’ve been picking up good fish on $3 dips (big surprise right?), PT’s, lighting bugs, zebra midges, and caddis pupa, but running a rubber leg or a pearl zonker through the faster seams is never a bad option this time of year..

The float section below Lyon’s Bridge has been fishing well early and late, but again…the afternoon bite has been a little more inconsistent–If you are looking to throw terrestrials during the afternoon hours, I would lean a little heavier on ants and attractors rather than hoppers for the time being. Streamer fishing has ranged from good to excellent most mornings, and olive dungeons, brown & yellow Big Hole Bugs, barely legals, and black/olive double screamers have all been in the lime-light over the last few days.  Nocturnal stones are still going strong, but fish are definitely getting a little more finicky as to what pattern they’re looking for.  Try black , royal, or purple chernobyls before the sun hits the water, and move a little more into the tan/pink/gold spectrum during the day…some of the takes are starting to become extremely subtle, so set first and ask questions later if you see anything that even remotely resembles a head coming up. There are also a few spruce moths flying below Lyon’s and Windy, but you’ll run into a lot more around the West Fork, Quake and Cliff Lakes, and the Madison between the Lakes.