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Old 03-12-2014, 09:46 PM
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Location: Gallatin County, MT
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Default Re: Yellowstone - Madison and Gibbon

As I read your responses in the forum, I thought to myself - this sounds just like Walter. Your writing is distinctive and I always look forward to your excellent updates at I've been looking at my fishing schedule from past seasons and deciding how I might shift things around with the potentially longer runoff.

I was on the Lower Madison last Thursday am - fine drizzle and a few rainbows but the rain came on hard and the water soon colored below Blacks Ford. The runoff from the warmer temp and rain resulted in flooding that made national news, but also points out that even with a big snowpack, how the runoff occurs is really dependent on a lot of factors,. It will be an interesting early summer and there will be a lot of elbows vying for fishable water early on. And there are some big moisture months ahead. Over 20" of snow in 24 hrs with 2" of water in it this week is growing that snowpack!
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Old 03-13-2014, 08:31 AM
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Default Re: Yellowstone - Madison and Gibbon

Jared, considering the snowpack, I would suggest that you have some backup plans. Pick out some lakes, tailwaters, and maybe some spring creeks in the area that you might want to visit. Good luck.
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Old 03-14-2014, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: Yellowstone - Madison and Gibbon

Even during years with high run off, the Fire Hole usually still fishes fine on opening weekend. Just keep a close eye on the West Yellowstone blog:

Fly Fishing In Yellowstone National Park

The guy who writes this blog is very open about what's really happening in West Yellowstone's surrounding rivers. As we get closer to Memorial Day weekend, if they (the blog above) are saying that the Firehole is not a safe bet, then for sure you better have some back up plans.

Even if the Firehole is running a little high, I would for sure at least spend one solid day on that amazing river. Here's a map of the park that clearly shows all the rivers:

Look for the Fountain Flats parking lot on the map (near Nez Perce Creek). Work your way upsteam to get away from the crowds. You can also fish Nez Perce Creek this time of year...just watch out for bears if you decide to go upstream a ways!
--Matt H.
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