Conditions on the Clark Fork are pretty good now that the rains have finally subsided and snow fall is kicking in. It is full on winter angling here now. Most of the accessible fish will be in the long riffles, fast moving slicks or back eddies. We say accessible because some of those long slow side channels and larger back-waters are iced up. The Clark above Missoula will be easier to find fish concentrations as the water continues to size down as you go up. However, the spring water coming out of Rock Creek help keep it open during cold snaps so unless you are heading all the way above Deer Lodge stay below the Creek. If you are looking for some surface midge action stay below Missoula and hit those days when the afternoon temps bend toward 40.
BEST TECHNIQUES – Double nymph rigs a bit deeper than most of the local rivers but still only 5-7′ deep. We go meat and potatoes here too (big attractors and worms) but trailing a zebra midge behind a larger nymph is sometimes the key.
OUR TIPS OF THE WEEK – The inversions in the valley of late have made angling tough close to Missoula. A bit of a drive up or downstream to get out from under the grey skies will not only improve your fishing chances but your winter attitude as well.
7 DAY OUTLOOK – Stars are lining up for a warming trend this weekend and the fishing should be good.
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.