Madison River Fishing Report for March 9th, 2018

Dam: 1,100 cfs

Kirby: 1,160 cfs

Varney: 1,240 cfs

Madison River fishing report.  The Upper Madison has been fishing really well lately, and it appears that the deep freeze of February is finally over.  It’s still pretty chilly in the mornings up river, but we are starting to see more highs in the 30’s and low 40’s and it won’t be long until more Spring-like temperatures start to become the norm.  Most of the boat ramps between Raynolds and Palisades are still drifted in with the exception of Windy Point, but you can get in and out from Windy down to Valley Garden if you feel like knocking off the boat cover and getting your oars wet. Lyon’s Bridge is also a possibility, but you’ll have to slide your boat down from the parking lot. Just make sure to scout your takeouts before putting in, and you might want to bring a tow strap and a shovel just to be on the safe side as large snow drifts can happen quickly overnight.

     We are still seeing a decent amount of midge activity from late morning through the afternoon on the calmer days, but the nymph bite has really been where it’s at.  Small Pat’s Rubber Legs and other small stonefly nymphs have been really good this week along with the usual suspects of $3 Dips, Zebra Midges, WD-40’s, Baetis nymphs, Hare’s Ears, and various other midge pupa.  Most of the fish are still in their winter haunts, so be sure to keep hitting the slower, deeper sections of the river and get your flies right on the bottom.  About the only time you might want to short-leash it is during the midge emergence in the afternoon, in which case you’ll want to target the upper 2-3 feet of the water column.

Streamer fishing has picked up a little bit over the last week, and should only get better as water temperatures start to creep higher into the mid 40’s.  Small sculpin and baitfish imitation are still the way to go, but larger patterns like Dungeons, Kitties, and the like will definitely get noticed by the larger fish.  Just make sure to keep your retrieves on the slow side for now and you should get into some nice fish.  Be sure to keep checking back for another Madison River fishing report from The Slide Inn.