We’re late in the spring game here in western Montana, which in most years means fishing is hard to find and restricted to little creeks and the upper drainages of the freestones – or you’re taking a drive over the hill to see the boys in Craig. This year the runoff has been more mild than usual and local options have been on the board. But that doesn’t mean the fishing is going to be gangbusters every time you hit the water. That’s the great thing about fly fishing: as soon as you think you’ve got it figured out, the fish like to remind you that you just plain don’t. You gotta work for it. And hell, would it be any fun if you didn’t? We’ve heard from a whole lot of frustrated weekend warriors about their memorial day weekend slumps, and every tale of fish not caught makes it that much more exciting for the next time you’re on the water. Sure, you could join the crowd at Rock Creek because the salmonfly hatch is roaring on the lower river, or you can search out the tough stuff and find that fish you’ve been looking for all spring. But even the salmonfly hatch isn’t a sure thing, with anglers coming off the water with more questions than answers some days, and others with grins as big as the bugs themselves. Time on the water is the only way to find fish, and you never know it all. Get out there and roll through runoff, and you’ll be better for it. Do work, find fish, or don’t. It’s the getting out there that counts.
|Like the X-Files, the truth is out there. You’re just going to have to work for it. Jayme Erickson finds a big native in the skinny, off color stuff of the upper Blackfoot river.|