Update on the Gallatin and East Gallatin Rivers:
The Gallatin has been fishing very well from 4-corners through Big Sky. The trout are starting to stack thick in the deeper slower runs. Concentrate on this type of water. Fish your nymphs heavy and slow. You really need to get the flies close to the fish this time of year. Unlike the warmer months, trout will not move very far for food in the winter due to the cold water and slow metabolism. A rubberlegs with a zebra midge trailer is hard to beat this time of year. Focus less on the specific choice of fly and more on making sure your flies are deep.
Keep your eyes peeled for fish rising in the soft water for midges. Eddies, behind rocks, and slower edge slack water are all good spots to look, especially on cloudy calm days. These hatches will grow in intensity as the winter progresses.
Flies with pink are always a safe choice in the winter. Firebead scuds, worms, and egg patterns can be deadly. I like to throw a double nymph rig with one natural option and one bright option to see what they prefer on any given day.
Winter can be a great time of year to fish with almost zero crowds and very predictable fish. Come on by the shop to see where we been fishing and get the inside scoop. Also, we run a discount on guided trips throughout the winter… Have fun and be safe.