.......................  ....................  ...Fly Fishing Yellowstone National Park
November 20, 2016

Summary of the 2016 Yellowstone Country
Fishing Season:

National Park Streams:
The Yellowstone National Park fishing season has closed for 2016. The
season will open again on the Saturday before Memorial Day, 2017.

General Description of the 2016 Season:
The 2016 Yellowstone season was as good one. There were no closings due to
fires, high water temperatures, heavy snows or anything else. That isn't the normal
situation. During a normal season, there will be some closings for one reason or

Again, we set many anglers up their fly fishing gear and equipment as well as trout
flies. Many were first time visitors to the park. Some were highly experienced and
some were just getting started. We had one problem that I remember well. One
customer reported our flies were not any good. He said they all sank and didn't
float on top very long. I ask what type of floatant he was using and he wouldn't
answer me. He was trying to figure out what floatant was. I guess, in a way, that was
our fault. We should have asked him if he had floatant and we may not have done

As we usually do, we also set up many customers that were returning to the park to
fish again and continued to use our flies and advise. That makes us happy not
from just a business standpoint, but otherwise knowing we were able to be of some

We had many customers purchase our instructional DVD on fly fishing the park. I
don't know the numbers off hand, but we sold a lot of them.  We have a huge data
base of compliments on the video that obviously helps those not familiar with the
park plan their trip and catch trout.

Firehole River:
As usual, the Firehole River gets the season off to a good start because it is the
first major stream to have good water temperatures and hatches of aquatic insects.
Thanks to the warm water from its many geysers, it always provides some good
early season opportunity.  It slows down during the summer, when the water gets
too warm, but picks backup near  the end of the season, when many of the streams
are getting too cold to provide good hatches and active trout.  

Gibbon River:
The Gibbon is a very diverse river, with a huge change in elevations. The water
temperature varies depending on the elevation. The lower end of the river, below
Gibbon Falls, can be good in the early part of the season. The Gibbons meadows
is good during June and early July. It gets too warm in the early summer. The fast,
pocket water in the section below the meadows downstream to the falls, keeps the
fish active and has a diverse aquatic insect population. The uppermost section of
the Gibbon has mostly brook trout and smaller rainbows. During the fall, migrating
fish come all the way from Hebgen Lake to the lower Gibbons to spawn.

Madison River:
The Madison River is normally a good place to fish in the early season as well as
the late season, and that was the case this past season. How well it fishes depends
greatly on the snowpack. It stay cooler during wet years when there is a good
snowpack and warmer when there is a lower snow pack. It is formed by the Gibbons
and the Firehole, and receives the benefits from the warmer water from the
Firehole River in the early season but this is a disadvantage during the hot months
of summer. During the early fall, It has runs of big brown trout looking for areas to
spawn from Hebgen lake. They are followed by rainbows. The "catching" of these
large trout didn't fare as well as it normally does this past season.

Gallatin River:
The Gallatin, one of the coldest streams in the park, produced well again. The river
doesn't really get into its prime until the first of July but when it does, it is a great
little stream. In fact, we think it may be as good as any small stream in the country.
There are a lot of cutbows, and some may consider that a downfall. There are
some great hatches that occur in the summer and lts of fish can be caught. It
began to slow down again this past season by about the middle of August. it picked
up about the middle of September.

Gardner River
As usual, most anglers drove right by the Gardner River even though it has some
of the best fishing in the park. We think it is so close to the main entrance, most
anglers not familiar with the park, simply can't believe it can be good. Again this
year, the Gardner provided a great salmonfly hatch as well as a excellent Golden
stonefly hatch. It is as good as it gets in the park. Little Yellow stoneflies hatches
were also good.

Yellowstone River (Canyon Section):
The Yellowstone Grand Canyon is hard to beat when it gets into shape and this
past year was no exception. We had several customers who reported some good
catches for it. The lower end near the bridge is okay, but the canyon below the
falls, accessed from the seven mile hole, is great but hell for anyone but a healthy,
younger person. It is seven miles straight down and seven miles straight back up.

Yellowstone River (Black Canyon):
Again this past season, we had several customers who fished the Black Canyon.
Some of this has to do with the fact we highly recommended it. August and
September is normally the best time and that was again the case. It does require a
lot of hiking, and an overnight stay is the best approach.

Yellowstone River Above Yellowstone Lake and below the Lake to the
Yellowstone Falls.
Again this past season, we had good and bad reports from the Yellowstone river
below the lake to the falls. That ha been the case for the last fifteen or so years.
The reports we got this past year were just as good as we have received, but there
were still some disappointed anglers.  If you want to fish it next year, remember, the
season doesn't open there until July 15th. As usual, the Yellowstone River above
the lake continued to have mixed reports. You can catch trout there in the
backcounty and usually plenty of them, but it probably won't produce as well as
many other far easier to get too destinations.

Lamar River:
Again this past season, the Lamar was good and bad, but mostly good from
mid-July through September. It is always affected by heavy thunderstorms from the
high elevations. it turned a dark, red muddy color a few times this past season.
Other than that, it again produced lots of big cutthroat trout.

Soda Butte Creek:
Again, from about mid July through most of August, the lower meadow section of
the creek had a good populations of large, spawning cutthroat trout. It also had a
good populations of anglers catching them. Of course, that's always a good
indication the fishing is good.

Slough Creek:
Again, Slough Creek was a very popular destination for many anglers. It again was
in good shape most of the time and produced a lot of trout including some very
good ones. It is not only a beautiful place to fish, it always produces good dry fly
action throughout its prime season time, and such was the case again this past
year. As usual, we had a lot of good reports from the many customers we set up to
fish Slough Creek. Matching the hatch on this stream can be very important.

Lewis River:
Although we only had a few customers who fished the upper river. The Lewis
Channel again turned out to be good place to be in mid-September and early
October. The lower Lewis, or section below the falls in the canyon, produced again,
but we only had a few customers choose to fish it.

Snake River:
As usual, the late season during the first of October, the Snake River turned out
some large browns moving up river to spawn from the lake. We only had two
groups experience it. I can't help but mention that it is the beginning on one of the
best and most fished trout streams in the western United States. We have a
website page on the Snake from the park to the Idaho state line.
I'll link it here for
those interested in fishing it when they come to Yellowstone.

Bechler River:
The Bechler River of the Cascade Corner of the park is rarely fished by anyone
other than locals, mostly Idaho anglers, but we did have three different groups that
fished it this past season.. All of them reported great fishing. It is best fished on an
overnight trip because it requires a good amount of hiking to get to the meadow

Fall River:
Like the Bechler, the Fall River of the Cascade Corner of the park is one of the
most overlooked, under fished streams in the park. We received more good reports
from customers visiting the cascade corner than we have before. It is truly wild,
remote country, rarely fished by anyone.

Streams Outside Yellowstone National Park: These
still have open seasons in many sections of the rivers.

Madison River (from Hebgen Lake to Ennis):
Weekly Updated Fishing Report

Yellowstone River (Outside the Park)
Weekly Updated Fishing Report

Gallatin River (Outside the Park)
Weekly Updated Fishing Report

Henry's Fork Snake River Idaho:
Weekly Updated Fishing Report
Options For Selecting Flies:

1. Email us at  
sales@perfectflystore.com with the
dates you will be fishing Yellowstone
Country and we will send you a list of
our fly suggestions. Please allow up to
24 hours for a response.

2. Call us at 800-594-4726 and we will
help you decide which flies you need.

3. Call or email us with a budget for
flies and we will select them and get
them to you in time for your trip.

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