The Blackfoot River

Select a river to view it’s report

The Blackfoot River

Updated 07/22/2021 at 5:46pm

Conditions At-a-glance

good

Weather Forecast

Our Report

BRO’s tips of the week:

***Don’t Forget your bear spray!  There was a fatal grizzly attack in Ovando last week.  Bears are moving into the river bottoms to get out of the heat so be extra careful***

Rope up!  As water temperatures rise be sure to size up your tippet to help quickly and safely land fish.  2X to 3X for larger dries, 4X for smaller dries, and 3X or 4X to the dropper.  Don’t forget to bring your stream thermometer!

7 day outlook:

The Blackfoot is going to finally get a break from 90+ degree days over the next week.  Highs in the low to mid-80’s forecasted for the Ovando area.  Be aware of fire conditions and restrictions- Missoula and Powell counties have enacted Stage 2 fire restrictions.  Be aware of water temperatures.  Get on the water early and get off early.

Our recommendations for techniques and patterns:

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it!  The dry-dropper is still the most productive rig.  Start with a nice floaty foam bug like a Water Walker or Chubby #08-12.  For your nymph, try a Sally Quill Spanish Bullet, Jig MT Sally, Frenchie, Yellow Spot or Tung Jig PMD in #14-16.  Yellow Sallies and PMDs are still around.  For the dry fly or die crowd, Parachute PMDs, PMD Cripples, Para Sallies and Goldie Hawns in #14-16.  If you really want to live on the edge you could tie on your favorite hopper and look for that first terrestrial eat of the summer.

Goings on at World Headquarters in Missoula:

Our new online store is just around the corner!  Keep an eye out for information on the launch in the next week.

Call or email us for up to the minute updates at 406.542.7411 or if you are in the area stop in- WE HAVE MOVED TO OUR BRAND NEW LOCATION AT 275 N. RUSSELL STREET IN MISSOULA- for all your Orvis gear and the right bugs.

USGS Water Charts

Conditions

Conditions are good on the Blackfoot. Be aware of water temperatures and good fish handling practices.

The Hatch

Golden stones, Yellow Sallies, Caddis, and PMDs.

Fly Patterns

DRIES - Water walker #6-16, Rastaman Golden #6-12, Rogue Stones #6-12, Green Drake Parachute #08-12. Knobbler Sally, Para Sally and Goldie Hawns in #14-16. Parachute PMDs, PMD Cripples, and Dime-Piece Spinners in #14-16. NYMPHS - Princes #10-#16, Rubber Legs/TJ Hookers #8-#12. Jig Napoleon (Yellow), Frenchie, Yellow Spot, and Tung Jig PMDs in #14-16. Sally Quill Spanish Bullets, Jig MT Sallies, and BH Sallies in #14-16. STREAMERS - Sparkle Minnow #6, Zonkers #6 & #8 in Natural, Olive, or Yellow, Kreelex Fly #6 in Copper/Gold.

Specifics

Water Flow

1080cfs (below average for this time of year)

Link to Water Flow Graph

http://on.doi.gov/1Tp3aKZ

Visibility

36"

Water temperature at mid-day

66-68 degrees

Water Condition

Clear

Best time of day to fish

Fish in the morning when the water is coldest. Guides are noticing that fish starts to slow down after 2:00.

Best stretch

The entire river is fishable.

Best access point

Multiple access points all along river.

Fish species

Rainbows, westslope cutthroats, cutbows, browns, bull trout and whitefish

Fishing season

All Year - Winter can be tough.

Nearest airport

Missoula International Airport (MSO)

Recommended fly fishing leader

From a boat - 7.5' 3x-4x. Wading step it up to 9'

Recommended fly fishing tippet

2x top bug and 3x for second or 3x to 4x for smaller rigs. We use 0x and 1x for streamers.

Best fly fishing rod

9ft 5 or 6 weights for nymphing and dries - 7wt for streamers

Best floating fly line

WF 5wt or 6wt

Best sinking fly line

3ips