Early Spring on the Gallatin River
A couple of years ago, some of my relatives came back to Montana for a vacation. Many of them planned on fly fishing the Gallatin River. Since it was the first few weeks of summer, everyone just assumed the Gallatin would be in tip top shape. Unfortunately, their timing was horrible. They happened to pick a week where the Gallatin was still experiencing peak snow melt runoff. The river’s un-fishable condition was disappointing for them, to say the least.
For a lot of people, visiting Montana and fly fishing one of its blue ribbon trout streams is a once in a lifetime event. Don’t let poor timing sour you on the experience.
Each winter is a different experience in southwest Montana. One never knows how much snow will fall and how much mountain ‘snow pack’ will accumulate. Depending on the spring weather, the snow melt may occur early or late in the season, as well.
Basically, planning an early summer fly fishing trip to the area is a crapshoot. If you have one planned, be prepared to be flexible in changing those plans if the ‘big melt is on.’
Let Montana Treasures assist you in your travel plans.
If you can drop everything that you’re doing, then I would have to say that right now (early Spring) is a great time to fly fish the Gallatin River. Make your plans today and you won’t be disappointed.
If your early summer vacation dates are already locked in, however, don’t despair. There are always alternative rivers and creeks to fish. For instance, if the Gallatin is blown out, then most locals know to fish nearby Hyalite Creek.
June on Hyalite Creek
Last year, I went as far away as the Beaverhead River to fly fish while the Gallatin was undergoing its early summer fit.
June on the Beaverhead River
Of course, if you have more flexibility in your planning, and the Gallatin is still on the top of your to do list, then, of course, mid-summer is ideal. I would hit it in mid-July at the earliest. You have never seen a more gorgeous river than at this time of year.
Summer on the Gallatin River
Of course, the remainder of the year, well into November, is still great for fishing on the Gallatin.
Fall on the Gallatin River
If you’re like me, and standing in all of that beauty is part of the allure, however, then I would pay close attention to the state of National forrest fires that invariably crop up in late August, limiting visibility.
Most importantly, if you have any concerns about your fly fishing trip to Montana this year, then please do not hesitate to contact Montana Treasures. I can give you status updates and suggestions.
In the meantime, look over Montana Treasures’ Explore pages including the one for the Gallatin River. There are Photo Maps, videos, and souvenirs…everything you need to locate that perfect fishing spot and motivate you to make this year’s fly fishing trip a once in a lifetime experience. Enjoy! :)