BIG HOLE’S SALMONFLY HATCH
June Dry Dry Action!
In June, the river is swollen, yet receding after a heavy snowmelt. However, the fishing is heating up. A western angler’s favorite hatch, the salmonfly hatch, begins on the Big Hole River.
Big Bugs, Big Fish
These are big bugs so it’s no wonder the river’s larger fish rise to the surface to feed on these big meals. The large stoneflies are clumsy fliers and crash into the water’s surface. Big trout know this and strike shortly after the orange-bellied bugs hit the surface.
Timing is tough with this hatch. Generally, it is mid-June on the Big Hole River. Beginning near the lower river, the hatch moves upstream over the course of 10-18 days. The salmonfly nymph crawls from the river onto nearby willows to hatch leaving behind large, empty shucks. Keeping up with the hatch, if possible, is the best tactic for catching trout on a dry fly. After the hatch has passed, trout are often gorged and not feeding.