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Bitterroot Valley

2011/9/16 10:59
From Johnstown, Pa
Posts: 12
Planing a trip to Montana this year. The area's we're looking at is in the Bitterroot Valley and the Rock Creek area. Our plain is to fish streams that are similar in size that we fish here in central and north central Pa. Sizes like the Little J, Penn's,Spring Cr, Kettle and Big Pine Cr. We;re thinking of spending 6 days in the Darby area then spend 6 days over in the Rock Creek area. We would like to be there when the weather is somewhat cooler in the fall. So we're thinking the last week in Aug through the first week in Sept would be ideal conditions.

Was wondering if anyone has fished those area's at this time of the year? Is the weather cool and are the flows in decent shape for wading? We understand that the hatches are sparse at this time of the year, but so are the anglers. The other main thing to is to fish wadable water, we definitely don't want to drift. Three pieces of water that's on our hit list right now are East and West Forks of the Bitterroot River and Rock Creek. I think since we're going to be there for 12 days we should be able to hit a few other wadable area's. Any suggestions on some other streams in the immediate area. Any help would be greatly appreciated. I thought I would post it here first before going to the fly shops out there for the info. Would rather trust the guys on here for info since i've read that a lot of you guys have been out there.

Posted on: 2013/1/2 9:06

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2010/2/18 8:57
From SW PA
Posts: 207
Wetfly Check your PM

Posted on: 2013/1/2 9:12
Hatches come and go of their own accord, but work will wait for you to get back.

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2006/9/13 10:18
From LV
Posts: 631
I'd jut stay in Missoula or near it. You won't waste time moving and there's plenty of water to fish in the area. You can even get to Glacier NP from there.

Posted on: 2013/1/2 9:58

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2009/5/29 6:40
From harlansburg
Posts: 602
missoula is a great town to stay in, plenty of places to eat/drink/etc.
an often overlooked stream is Lolo creek.

Posted on: 2013/1/2 14:15

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2007/5/29 14:32
From SE PA - Montgomery County
Posts: 219
I fished both of those streams three years ago. It was in late May however, so I cannot comment on the hatches that time of year, but I will say as long as the flows are fine you will catch fish. I was on my own for 6 days and explored what I could. I can give you exact locations if you need them.

Rock Creek is more like a small PA freestoner. Bitterroot is bigger water, but still easy to fish with a bunch of public access points along the river. Rock Creek is small enough that you don't need to wade too much. It is tricky though. Bitterroot is easy wading with a small cobble bottom in the areas I fished.

When I was at Rock creek I had no trouble catching fish on nymphs and dries. They were not too selective. Fish the very upper section for the Cutts. I used a size 12 Adams dry and had plenty of action just targeting likely pockets that would hold fish. Rock Creek has a road following it the entire length I fished it. Might require 4WD in the upper sections and if it is muddy. Rock Creek reminded me of the Savage River in MD if that is any help. It's rocky.

Harry: "I expected the Rocky Mountains to be a little rockier than this. "
Lloyd: "I was thinking the same thing. That John Denver's full of s***, man."

Posted on: 2013/1/2 15:19

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2011/6/12 20:15
From Newville, PA
Posts: 122
Chaz is spot on with recommending Missoula as your base of operations. I always stay at Ruby's Inn (formerly Ruby's Reserve Street In). Nothing fanvy, but know how to treat you right. Your proposed dates should put you in the middle of the hopper action.

Posted on: 2013/1/2 17:59
“If we become conceited through great success, some day the trout will take us down a peg. - Theodore Gordon

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2007/4/25 10:02
Posts: 823
Most traffic in Mt on that highway between Missoula and Hamilton. It was Aug when fished Bitterroot. It was slow blazing hot. I did okay but I had one of the best days ever once I decided to seek shade and hit a trib. Fly shop told me the stre was tight and brushy. Ha it was 3/4 the size of Fishing creek and wouldn't be that great. He was right it was super mega fantastic. I like the Blackfoot a lot. Rock Creek was nice to.

Posted on: 2013/1/2 18:03
I flyfish because I enjoy it.

Re: Bitterroot Valley

2006/9/11 9:06
Posts: 1
Was there in late August two years ago. Stayed in a cabin across from the W Branch of Bitterroot at mile marker 7. Had our own moose lving at the cabin. Fished every morning starting at about 8. Cutthroat activity was good till around 10. Then dead till around 5 or 6. Used large tan or cream elk hair caddis size 10 or 12. Royal Wulff & Coachman were also useful. There was lots of access the length of the road from Darby to Painted Rocks Reservoir. The E. Branch was not as good and the main branch that time of year will be low. If you want to have fun get a map and hike up to Baker Lake. Drive to base at about 5K ft and hike about a mile to around 7K. There's about a 2 acre lake but above it is a meadow with pools that are full of the hungriest cutthroat you'll ever see. There small however 8-10" typ. The water in the W. Branch was cold but I fished with just wading shoes and was OK. Missoula's 90 miles away and there isn't much to fish until you get there from Darby.

Posted on: 2013/1/14 15:59

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