THE BITTERROOT RIVER: Our Home Water
During it's 85 mile journey from Conner to the Clark Fork confluence in Missoula, the Bitterroot has dropped 800 feet - this provides a very comfortable speed in which to wade or float. This is not an intimidating river; full of traditional holding water, the Bitterroot offers well- defined riffles, pools, log jams, cut banks and back eddies.
Blessed with some of the most prolific insect life in the Rocky Mountains, the Bitterroot River offers mayflies, stoneflies, damsels, caddis and terrestrials. In the Spring anglers flock to the Bitterroot for the highly awaited Skwala hitch. Once the water reaches 42 degrees you will see bugs, fishermen and tons of smiles for those who venture on the river.
The much anticipated Salmonfly hatch corresponds somewhat with the weather, snow pack and spring run-off. It usually commences near the first of June, and depending on water temperature (it needs to be 51 degrees) and can last anywhere from mid-June to early July. Riding on the backs of the Salmonfly is the Golden stone hatch.
From here the fishing just gets better and better with the Bitterroot stonefly hatch, Green & Grey Drakes, PMD's, mahoganies, Blue-winged olives, flavs, caddis, and terrestrials (just to name a few). A general rule of thumb is almost every aquatic insect found in the Rocky Mountain West can be found on the Bitterroot River.
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