14 April, 2021 Yellowstone River and Livingston Area Fishing Report

Spring fishing is upon us! As the weather warms, water temps come up as well and things are only going to get better. Warmer water means more active fish, and more active insect activity. You can still find midges in pretty good numbers along the Yellowstone, as well as BWOs on cloudy and cool days. March Browns are right around the corner (check out our YouTube Channel for some great March Brown pattern fly tying videos), and Mother’s Day Caddis are on the horizon as well. 

With the warmer weather, watch for the river to dirty up a bit after hot days. These flow bumps typically clear up reasonably quickly, but it’s something to pay attention to. We have a ways to go until runoff starts, but expect flows to slowly start trending higher as more and more snow melts. 

Be aware that the Springdale fishing access on the Yellowstone remains closed after a wildfire in late March. The unofficial Twin Bridges access below Reed Point is closed as well. We’ve seen a spate of wildfires and grass fires in recent days, so please be aware that things are very dry right now. 

When fish aren’t rising, try a deaddrifted streamer or Zirdle Bug with a small, flashy nymph behind it. While fish are getting more active, continue to focus on the slower, softer water. Have a handful of midge and BWO dries and emergers with you, ready to make the switch when conditions warrant it. Fishing a dry fly with an emerger behind it can be deadly, and the more visible dry fly helps you fish the often nearly invisible emerger patterns. 

The Yellowstone River is a great choice for both floaters and wade anglers right now. The lower flows in the spring make wade fishing easier and open up more spots. As always, watch your step and wade carefully. The Spring Creeks are in fantastic shape right now and are an excellent option if you want some challenging and technical dry fly fishing. If you’re after something else, don’t overlook local stillwaters. Lake fishing after ice off can be very productive. 

Stop by the shop or give us a call at 406.222.1673 with any questions or if you’re after more details. We are getting more and more spring and summer gear in every week, come down and get geared up! 

april fishing report dan baileys