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Old 06-29-2011, 10:59 AM
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Default Montana High waters High Times

My Lady Charly and I arrived in Missoula on 6-25-11 to Fly fish for 8 days. We went straight to the Clark Fork to see what was happening. Oh my, the river is the highest we have ever seen it. But we knew that going in so we high tailed it to the Big Mo. Though it is mostly Nymphing right now I managed to throw a few streamers at the banks but Bobbers are it right now though there is a ton of bugs on the water. The river is clearing but the flows are still over 22,000.... OH my. We were literally fishing at times in back yards of folks homes sometimes on their manicured back lawns. Talk about high water..WOW

We are fishing with Jed Fieblecorn from Endless Drift outfitters.
Jed@endlessdrift.com who also hosts Trout Unlimited's Fly Fishing T.V. Show "On The Rise". Great Guide and great friend whom we are having a blast with.

Sometimes we do what we have to do to find fish but we also found some of the greatest non fishing experience memories we will take with us for the rest of our lives.

We stayed with Chip and Sue at the Missouri River Ranch which used to be the fly away ranch. It's a 4 room B and B located 1 minute from town. 160 magnificent acres and charming as heck. Chip and Sue purchased it only a few months ago and are one of the best parts of Craig. I know they will be doing improvements but as it is we LOVED it. Breakfast on the patio overlooking the Mo. I highly recommend booking a room there well in advance along with making reservations for dinner at Izaak's in Craig. Infact book dinner there every night you are staying as you can spend many an evening trying everything.

Izaaks is just an amazing find in a tiny town. The town of Craig only has 50 full time residents but this is a restaurant which would absolutely SCORE in any big time city. The Atmosphere is just fun and joyous. The wait staff is one big family where no one server waits your table. Everyone comes by to chat and see how you are doing. Water Glasses, cocktails, food, etc. are always being tended to. If you like BBQ this is one of the best places you will ever find. GREAT food and GREAT prices. You cannot go wrong with anything you order but for the daily deserts you might want to reserve them when you get there. This is clearly a big city restaurant with a small town welcoming environment. John the owner, Jeff and Chris along with the girls are just something to experience.

Anyway, fishing was okay with big, healthy Missouri river fish being caught by us not in huge numbers just great quality. Fishing should be incredible here within a week or two as it looks like no more bumps should be in the offing.

We will be in the Missoula area for the next 4 days and will fish the closing day on Rock creek for floaters, the opener at Georgetown lake (My favorite spot for sight fishing to big trout with streamers) and a river of our choice on the 2cd of July.

Though the rivers are hitting near record heights and flows we are making a great trip out of it.

Jamie

Last edited by fishordie; 06-29-2011 at 12:57 PM.
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Old 06-29-2011, 11:31 AM
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Default Re: Montana High waters High Times

I think I'm jealous!! Sounds like a super great time! Post some pics when you can!
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Old 06-29-2011, 12:19 PM
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Default Re: Montana High waters High Times

Jamie
I'm jealous also, sounds like you and Charly are having a fantastic time despite the unusually high water this year! Thanks for posting the great trip report and the recommendations for Endless Drift outfitters, the Missouri River Ranch B&B and Izaaks!

Larry
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Old 06-29-2011, 01:03 PM
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Default Re: Montana High waters High Times

We floated the Missouri on Sunday... just launching at Holter was an experience. Waves were really pushing the boat around at the put it.

The water coming out of the spillway was impressive.
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Old 06-30-2011, 11:50 PM
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Default Re: Montana High waters High Times

My understanding is that spring blow-out is normally pretty much over by mid-July. Do you all expect that to be the case this year (I'm guessing not)?
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Old 07-01-2011, 11:19 PM
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Default Re: Montana High waters High Times

Quote:
Originally Posted by dhayden View Post
We floated the Missouri on Sunday... just launching at Holter was an experience. Waves were really pushing the boat around at the put it.

The water coming out of the spillway was impressive.
Hi Dave,

Oh Yeah, Holter Dam was pretty fun to launch from. Watching the dam close one of the chutes was pretty cool too. Hopefully things will calm down soon and the MO. will get back to fishing amazing especially for us dry and streamer fishermen probably in August. Maybe by mid or end of July but we will see. If you think Holter was an experience you should put in at the dam on the Big Horn in Early June of this Year. What a trip. Talk about your E ticket ride at Disneyland.... Anyway, we are actually have some good dry fly fishing on the Upper Bitter Root. It should just get better from here on out if you know where to fish.

Jamie

---------- Post added at 11:19 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:14 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fly2Fish View Post
My understanding is that spring blow-out is normally pretty much over by mid-July. Do you all expect that to be the case this year (I'm guessing not)?
Yo F2F,

Not sure about it being over in mid July. The mountains are still loaded with snow and we have not really had the super hot weather yet. So we will see but for this angler I will be back in August and expect some truly amazing fishing throughout the state. The next 2 or 3 weeks should see some returns to great fishing and hopefully sooner. Amazing though, the State did not extend the float season on Rock Creek so that place should be off the hook great for wading folks once the river is down to a safe level. I cannot remember when I heard so many days of licensed fishing on the creek were not used. I suppose this means fewer holes in the mouths of hungry fish for folks wading from the banks.

Jamie
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