23 April 2021 - Yellowstone River and Livingston Area Fishing Report

It’s snowing this morning in Livingston! Waking up to a couple inches of fresh snow in town this morning can put a damper on wanting to get out and go fishing, but don’t let it stop you. These dreary, cloudy days can be some of the best for spring fishing especially as temps warm up after a storm comes through. Hatches like BWOs and Midges are much better on cloudy days. Looking at the forecast for the weekend it would appear we should have some good weather for those dry fly anglers searching for a way to get out. 

The Yellowstone River has been in pretty good shape in recent weeks. Reasonably consistent temps have prevented the river from getting too off color, even with some pushes of moistures coming through. As this most recent snow melts off over the next few days, expect a bump in flows and a drop in visibility. This should clear quickly. 

Keep an eye out for BWO, midges, and March Browns. Nymphing has been the most consistent, but on cloudy days headhunters can find scattered fish feeding on top. Those interested in fishing streamers can also do well as rising water temps and time of year mean more active trout. We’ve heard reports of fish actively chasing streamers in the right conditions. 

Bear in mind that the Springdale access remains closed, and likely will be for some time. Most floaters have been concentrating on the valley stretch, but below Livingston can be very good in the spring. PLEASE BE CAREFUL. Just because the flows are lower than they are in the summer doesn’t mean you can sleep on the sticks. Pay attention, be safe! 

You can check the river flows right here.

If you feel like a drive, all our area rivers are fishing well right now. The Missouri is a great option when freestones dirty up, the Madison isn’t too far away, and the Gallatin has been improving as things melt out in the canyon. Since it is the spawning season, always be extra careful when you’re wading to avoid redds. Leave the fish alone to do their thing! 

Stillwaters are a great choice this time of year. The period right after ice off can be especially productive as fish are hungry after a long winter. While mountains lakes are still out of the question, there are plenty of good options at lower elevations. Bring leeches, chironomids, and a handful of midge dries. The spring creeks are fishing great, if you can get a rod reservation. 

We’re easing into some of the best fishing of the year around here. Stop by the shop for updated info, the flies you need, and all the advice and gear that’ll help improve your day on the water.