7/23/11 – Jefferson River. Floated Kountz to Cardwell. Bright sun all day, 2,800cfs at Parsons (-), 2' of viz. The Jefferson is always a gamble, and it didn't pay off today... just a couple of small fish were caught.
7/24/11 – Gallatin River. 1,800 cfs (-). Viz 2'+ with a color now more green than brown. Fished behind the house this evening, it was very good. The best fish was a 17” brown that was super heavy. Fish were holding in soft water along banks. A half-back was most productive, but a shop vac took a few as well. It's like fishing a new river, runoff has changed everything.
7/27/11 – Gallatin River. 1,600 cfs (-). 3' of viz. Fished from 8-10am behind the house this morning. Tried out the 3wt Winston LT for the first time, sweet dry fly rod! Lots of nocturnal stonefly shucks along the river. Peacock, #12 stimulator trailed by a #14 yellow stimi. A few nice browns came off the banks for the yellow stimi. No active risers seen. Also fished from 8-9:30pm behind the house, taking two tiny rainbows on an Iris Caddis that I tied up before going out. Caddis were out in droves, but very few rises.
MFISH the lake holds cutts, but upon arrival I saw no signs of life despite a prolific hatch of large mayflies (unsure of I.D., but not callibaetis) and lots of moths on the water. Walked the entire perimeter, no fish seen - lake is very shallow along the shoreline. Didn't wet a line. Upon getting home I looked at MFISH again and added "fishing logs" to the query... sure enough anglers are reporting catches of cutts and brookies here... should have fished, oh well. Great hike, the glissade down from the summit ridge was awesome!
SOAR out of storage and floated from the house to the frontage road this evening. 2.5-3 hour float if no stops. A few pushy sweepers/strainers, but nothing too crazy. Fishing was very good, despite the fact that I stubbornly stuck with an unproductive streamer (Matt's sculpin) pattern trailed by a very productive shop vac. Took a couple of healthy rainbows in Ralph's Run as well as some whitefish. Helped Megan with her cast and mending, got her into a couple of fish by days end on a shop vac run shallow under an indicator. Great numbers of caddis out, and a few active risers - worked them until last light near the take-out.