The Big Hole River and
its commercially permitted waters are another angling option for
Wapiti Waters clients. This Missouri headwaters stream flows through
geologically complex southwestern Montana. This is evident in how it
changes direction as it flows from northeast to southeast in
somewhat of an arc, one of the truly scenic rivers in the west. Its
pristine tea-colored waters arise from the Anaconda-Pintler
Wilderness and the Pioneer Mountains just on the opposite side of
the Bitterroot Continental Divide. This is a higher elevation river
than the Bitterroot or Blackfoot and it has a bit shorter “growing
season” as well. However, within these sacred, productive waters are
good populations of brown and rainbow trout. The Big Hole
River is also the last bastion of the Arctic fluvial grayling.
The hatches of aquatic
insects, particularly caddis and mayflies can be
phenomenal. Mosquitoes have a good reputation along the upper Big
Hole as well!
Low summer flows have in recent years led to some
angling restrictions. Float-fishing after mid July can be sketchy.
Despite this, the Big Hole is a river that gets
into your soul. It offers some truly sublime angling for the
dry fly purist and great “underneath” fishing for the nymph, wet
fly, or streamer enthusiast. Once visited, one will always yearn to
return to it season after season. Call us soon about your trip for fly fishing Montana.