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Clark Fork River

Updated 08/23/2019 at 11:45pm

Conditions At-a-glance


Weather Forecast

Our Report

It’ll be hot midweek but we are looking forward to a big cool down come Thursday!

BEST TECHNIQUES – If you are trying the Clark Fork, look for walking pace water with a depth of 3′-6′. Try soft insides and look for good structure.  Fish are looking up for small mayflies in the slicks and heavier current lines.


Dry dropper fishing is still getting it done these days. A mayfly or smaller stone dropper is the ticket under a smaller sized chubby.
We are still encouraging folks to get out early just to keep that habit rolling.
Hopper fishing has been pretty darn good on the entire river.
They are looking up for small mayflies (tricos these days) so be on the lookout for noses.
Still be careful in the braids between Clinton and Sha-ron as things have changed from last years high water. And now with low water, it won’t be easy.
When in doubt, scout it out.


Wednesday is looking hot, high of 90.  There is a cold front moving in that evening, look for winds associated with the big change.

Thursday on looks cooler, with highs in the low 80’s.

Strong winds in the evenings this weekend, please be advised!

Call or email us for up to the minute updates at 406.542.7411 or if you are in the area stop in our fly shop and say hi at 3055 North Reserve Street in Missoula for all your Orvis gear and the right bugs.


In good summer shape

The Hatch

Still some bigger stones, PMDs,tricos, Caddis, some spruce moths, Sallys. And the hoppers are out and about!

Fly Patterns

DRIES - #6-12 any color hopper, #8-12 chubby, #18-22 tricos NYMPHS - Stone flies aka pats, #10, prince #12, phez tails #16, tungsten salvation nymph #14. STREAMERS - olive or natural zonker type pattern #6, sparkle minnow #6, olive or black bead head buggers #8 Don't forget a few big pike flies and metal leader.


Water Flow

720 cfs at Turah with 2840 cfs below Missoula at Regis

Link to Water Flow Graph


about a 5'

Water temperature at mid-day

71 near Superior

Water Condition

In good summer shape

Best time of day to fish

Early morning until things heat up.

Best stretch

The whole system

Best access point

multiple access points all along the river

Fish species

Rainbows, cut throats, cut-bows, browns, and white fish.

Fishing season

Fishing season is open year round, while the winter is catch and release for trout.

Nearest airport

Missoula International Airport

Recommended fly fishing leader

9' 3x

Recommended fly fishing tippet

2x to the first bug 3x to the second unless going small then drop down one size.