• PARTNER: PROTECT YOUR WATERS
  • Go To: THE FLIES OF YELLOWSTONE
  • Go To: YELLOWSTONE FISHING WEATHER
  • Go To: YELLOWSTONE FLY FISHING MAPS
  • Visit: Moldy Chum
  • Visit: The Horse's Mouth
  • Visit: Chi Wulff
  • Visit: Parks' Fly Shop
  • Visit: Montana Cowgirl
  • Wednesday, May 19, 2010

    Touch & Go

    HISTORY:
    NOT ON OUR SIDE
    Firehole Gage Fixed
    our fingers are crossed

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    .. We've been holding out for the possibility that the Madison River will not be blown on opening day. It's not looking good.
    .. With just over a week left until May 29 the capricious gods of weather and runoff are pulling their seasonal tricks in the high country.
    .. Just a few days of temperate weather combined with tepid rain from some thundershowers and the placid waters of Yellowstone National Park are starting to rise.
    .. The history of peak flows in the Spring shows that despite our desires there will probably be mud in the Madison River. Stupidly, our denial shall hold out for a few more days.

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    .. The historic record is not good. Data for the past 82 years show the average MAXIMUM DISCHARGE on the Madison River for spring occurs on May 29, damitall! (LINK.)


    .. The same dreary data is available for the Firehole River (LINK,), Gallatin River (LINK,) and Gibbon River (LINK.)
    .. All have high or maximum flows at about the same time! Talk about sadistic planning on the part of our NPS staff. After all, the past 10 days have shown near-perfect conditions for fishing and catching.


    .. The river gage on the Firehole River has been out of whack for the past few days and we've had anxiety attacks daily from wondering about the flows. It's fixed now and the accelerating discharge is right on schedule, (albeit just a bit low.)

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    .. Opening day on the west side of Yellowstone National Park traditionally sees flocks of elbows along the hallowed shores of the Firehole River: for good reason.
    .. Even now there are hatches of Baetis, Caddis, and Midges: a small cloud of PMD's was spotted near the picnic area by Midway Geyser Basin just yesterday.
    .. Often flowing bank-full and slightly colored on opening day, the Firehole River is usually clear enough to fish - and catching is grand if you're willing to sink your flies.

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    .. The Gibbon River above Virginia Cascades, and in the confluence meadows around Solfaterra Creek, can also usually be fished. Even when out of bank in the meadows the river is at grade and the grass helps clear the water. This area can provide wonderful opportunities for sight fishing to 10" brook trout in the grass near the river channel.
    .. The high meadows on either side of the road to Canyon are usually spongy and gooey. This is delicate fishing to hungry and eager brookies as well. If it stays clear this is good grayling water as well. We'll see.

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    .. Breakfast time: flapjacks with grilled pineapple and banana slices, drenched in maple syrup, eggs - up and done, homemade elk link sausage, heavily buttered sourdough toast, buttermilk and coffee.
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