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Trout Fishing Under a Sepia Colored Sky

It's pretty well known that it's another big wildfire season out west.  While the mountain scenery of Southwest Montana is hidden behind a veil of smoke, the smoke itself makes the fishing better.  Smoke acts as artificial clouid cover, fish prefer to eat in cloudy conditions.  The haze also prevents direct sunlight from warming the water as much.  

There has been a lot of information circulating in the national media about the plight of trout fishing in Montana.  While we are equally concerned about our cold water fisheries, some of it is a bit alarmist.  The Beaverhead is not closed, nor is the upper thirteen mile tailwater section under any restrictions at all.  The fishery is in great shape, and the fishing is and has been quite good here all summer.  That being said, we are treating every fishing as gently as possible and avoiding the fisheries in our area that are struggling due to low flows and high water temps.

The flows from Clark Canyon Reservoir are dropping slightly each day from some big water, making the fishing easier for both float fishing and wading anglers.  Strong hatches of PMDs are out each morning followed by yellow sallies at midday.  Some fish are being caught on hoppers in the lower half of the upper river.  The upper Beaverhead remains as good or better of an angling destination as any river in the state.