|....................... .................... ...Fly Fishing Yellowstone National Park
A Few Notes To Help Protect The Innocent with a little humor.
Things are normal for Yellowstone National Park at this time of the year - snowing, raining, high water and
a few people catching a few trout. That's typical for June. You see, June in Yellowstone country is late
February or early March in most places. There's a chance to get a good size trout but quite frankly, there's
a hundred other areas or streams in the nation that provide better opportunities than Yellowstone does on
most June days. These conditions will change and change rather fast.
Of course, the local West Yellowstone outlook is different. You can't blame them. The Yellowstone fly
fishing season is a short one. Timing is of the utmost importance. I was talking to a local fly shop owner a
few years ago that was being honest and I mentioned that "next year" I was coming the first of June for a
couple of months. He replied, "wait until July". Although there's always a lot of trout caught in June, he had
good reason to say that. Giving them the benefit of the doubt, the stream and weather conditions are about
50-50. There's good days and bad days. On the good days your glad your there but if your limited to a
week or two, your not so happy on the bad days.
Yes, you can find the right spots and fish a foot from the bank with a chartreuse streamer or blood red
nymph but you can do that anywhere in the nation and catch trout. The big difference is "the experience".
Catching trout isn't everything to most anglers. It's the experience, they argue. At least that's the reasoning
of some anglers mostly, the ones that never catch anything.
Yellowstone National Park is a beautiful and gives you very different view of the World we live in. There's
even a few people, maybe 50 or so, that like it so well they actually live there. It is a nice place to live,
especially if you have a home in Florida to spend the Winter, another one In Costa Rica to spend the
Spring and another one in the Great Smoky Mountains to spend autumn.
Those that live in Yellowstone Country year-round may seem a little strange to you. They may not take a
bath some months, may never shave but they are not all in the Una-bomber category. Just treat them like
the bears and buffaloes and keep your distance. Unless they own one of the dozen fly shops, they hate
The guides and fly shops will all tell you how and where to fish in the park, if you buy a few elk hair flies
from them or hire them for a float trip. Of course, those that work in the fly shops don't have time to fish
during the season and the guides all fish the rivers outside the park where they have the advantage of
having a boat available. They rarely, if ever, fish in the park.
Elk skin in Yellowstone Country is like Texas cow skin and they will have you thinking the trout prefer elk
hair because elk live there. You can also get some deer hair flies but they aren't quite as plentiful as the
elk. Feathers are also used on the local flies, as long as it's a local bird. They will tell you that's what the
Yellowstone trout prefer and what matches the local Yellowstone insects even though the insects in the
park are the same insects in most all other western trout streams.