We Wouldn’t Blame You

Skwala fever has hit Missoula, and no one would blame you if your sudden illness requires you to miss work and head directly to the Bitterroot to get your prescription filled. Well, maybe your boss would blame you. But we sure won’t. You go get ’em. It’s early in the hatch, which means the fish aren’t terribly selective when it comes to patterns. Toss out the olive stuff with slim bodies for the good stuff, but black and purple are great too. An olive stimulator is a great fly for most places, and a chubby works well too. After that, you’re on your own. Head to a fly shop and grab the new hot pattern, because I’m not giving you mine. Here’s some hints: Slim. Smaller than you think. Wiggly. did I mention slim? Good. You can find them on top. But if you don’t, bring that rubberlegs and those worms. And don’t forget your streamer box. This is skwalas in spring, not the multiple overlapping hatches of summer. Find a reason to call in sick, and get some of that early hatch time, because by the time the weekend hits the boat and weekend warrior invasion will be on. If you don’t want to spend your time behind a bunch of hooting college bros with their hashtags on #lock, get in there before they get there. Because once the news hits the Kettlehouse, it’s all downhill from there. There’s plenty of river to go around, but something about the first big bug after the winter break makes people a little crazy. Adding to that, the ski hills aren’t all that this year so you’ll be seeing a lot of people in the hot spots this weekend. You can deal with it and take your chances, or that lingering cough could come back real strong on Wednesday…

I’ve highlighted all of the best skwala spots on this map so you don’t have to work for it at all.
Just kidding.

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