Dam: 832 cfs
Kirby: 882 cfs
Well it took a little longer than we anticipated, but it is safe to say that Fall is finally here, and all the good things that come with it. The blue wings have been out in force when the clouds have moved in, and we’ve had some great dry fly fishing in the wade section from late morning until around 3:00 in the afternoon. Nymphs are still the way to go early on though– size 20 BWO nymphs and emergers as well as midge larva and pupa have been good to downright ridiculous throughout the morning, but the bite seems to slow down quite a bit in the afternoon when the sun pops out. Streamer fishing has also picked in both the wade and float sections. If you are looking to throw some junk below Lyon’s Bridge keep in mind that the water is pretty skinny between Palisades and Ruby Creek, and then again below Story Ditch. The best holding water in the float stretch at the moment seems to be between Lyon’s and Palisades, Ruby and Story, and then again from Varney to 8-Mile. On the darker days we’ve been doing really well on olive and black sex dungeons thrown tight to the bank as well as behind big boulders, but be sure not to neglect the tailouts and inside bends this time of year as that tends to be where the bigger browns on the move will hold before moving upstream. We are also seeing more and more colored up browns moving up between the lakes, but it appears that they haven’t started digging quite yet. Streamer fishing has been a little tougher during the day up there when the sun is out, but the evenings have more than made up for it, as have overcast days. And so it is with most fall fishing throughout the Rockies where we enter the time of extremes…on the one hand you have your baetis and midges between size 18 and 22, and size 2 articulated streamers on the other. Which one you decide to throw at them, we’ll leave up to you. Finally, this is the time of year where the crowds are gone, the fish are far less pressured, and the river gives us one last chance at some truly large fish before the winter snows descend upon the valley, and we are left only to dream of another season on the Madison.