Flies for Yellowstone and Eastern Streams

trout flies 2Guest Blogger: Clay Cunningham, Cody, WY, retired National Park Superintendent

These are the patterns of flies that are most likely to appear on both the trout streams of the eastern United States and the Rocky Mountain rivers and streams. Quite a few fishermen from the east make the trip west to fish the Yellowstone country, which is why I have included the patterns that are the most productive for both regions. You would be well prepared in both regions with the patterns listed. Depending on the particular geographic location of the stream (southern, central or northern locations), the makeup of the stream bottom; large and small rocks, silts, decaying foliage, water temperature, mineral content (limestone enhances insect populations), and the time of year are all factors influencing the presence and timing of a particular species of insects that could be present or hatching.
If you are a fly tier and have a computer you can usually find the patterns for these flies with an internet search. One of the best books for every pattern is Dave Hughes’ Trout Flies, The Tier’s Reference. All the flies I list here are well known to fly shop owners. They should be able to supply them if you buy your flies.

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Season’s End

Firehole River "The Last Day" 2014
Firehole River “The Last Day” 2014

Guest Blogger: Mike Cline, Bozeman, Montana

In Southwest Montana, season’s end doesn’t happen on any specific date. Most of our larger rivers are open year round. Other than Yellowstone Park and a lot of small streams, hardy anglers can fish anytime they want. Rather what happens is that November eventually begins with hope of a few more good days but by the end of the month most sane anglers have packed away the gear for the winter. Compared to mid-summer, fishable days are few. The brown trout spawn is over, rainbow and cutthroats are now languishing in waters just above freezing and only the veritable whitefish shows much activity. The days are shortening fast, the wind, rain/snow and freezing cold more likely than not. Early ice jams on bigger rivers portend dangerous fishing through the winter months. The last few weeks in November in Montana are sometimes just best spent reflecting on the season and anticipating the next.

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