Up She Goes Again (Poor Billy!)

The MO just got another bump of water this afternoon.  We’re now over 8K.  They are making room in Canyon Ferry for runoff as their is more going out then is coming in right now.  The MO at over 8K is a much more difficult river to wade fish and most places are a no no.  Be careful out there.  (Read Brad’s post about wading the MO)  If you have a boat (or hey, rent one from us!) then you’ll do fine.  It’s a deep nymph thing again so bring plenty of split shot and 1″ Thingamabobbers.  Is it like 2011?  Not exactly, but we should see flows around 15K in June (based on the 1946-2013 data provided by the BOR and MT FWP for peak flows below Holter Dam.)


The one person who is lamenting the sudden bump in the flows today is Bag Limit Bill, who was on his first day on the river as a Montana Fly Fishing Guide (flying under the Montana Fishing Outfitters flag).  He did have his clients manage to catch some fish but it wasn’t like yesterday when it was on fire (see Bill & Ed’s report from this morning).  We thought it would be an easy first day for Billy but those “dam people” threw a wrench in the machine and made for some tougher fishing conditions.  (It always takes the fish a day or two to settle into the new higher flows.)  We have some handy links for streamflows and snowpack on our Streamflows page on our main website.

Swing by our Craig shop, say congrats to Bill and get your shuttle or rental boat.

Spring Fishing is Good -but don’t Tread on Redds

photo of a trout redd

Please be mindful where you wade and don’t Tread on Redds. (Photo from MT FWP)

Spring may have sprung on the calendar but you could fool me by the temperature and frozen precip falling from the sky!  It was warmer in January for crying out loud!  Nevertheless, it is Spring and the Rainbows are doing their thing they do at this time of year.  That means some ornery Rainbows and with the water temps creeping up, feisty Browns.  PLEASE be mindful of redds (trout spawning beds).  You’ll find them in shallow, gravelly areas with a nice steady current flowing over them.  They look like a shallow, scooped out bowl of cleaned gravel that stands out from the surrounding darker, weedier gravel.  (See photo)  You may or may not see trout on the redds, either way, just admire the trout’s innate desire to perpetuate the species and leave those areas alone.  And don’t TREAD ON REDDS.  Be careful where you wade.

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CrossCurrents Fly Shop Featured on NBC News


Jim Stein’s Beartooth NBC Interview on the Art of Fly Tying

Yesterday, we had the pleasure of having Luba Solonenko, Reporter from Beartooth NBC News visit us in our Downtown Helena store to do an interview and some video footage about the art of fly tying and our Fly Tying Schools.  We love talking about fly fishing, fly tying and sharing our knowledge and passion for this hobby/sport/lifestyle so I’m sure Luba had her work cut out for her in the editing room after all we covered yesterday morning.  Luba, had to edit all that info down to a minute and a half news segment.  We think she did a great job!  March 20th was the start of our last Beginner Fly Tying Class for 2014.  We will now focus on our 3-Day Fly Fishing Schools starting in April.  If you or a relative or friend are interested in learning the art of fly tying or how to fly fish, please click, call (406-449-2292) or stop by and get your name on our list of interested students and we will get you into one of our schools.  We would love to help you learn our passion!

Fly Shop Experience

When it’s 27 BELOW Zero outside -with no chance of fly fishing unless you jump on an airplane and head to lower latitudes -it’s fun to read about the life I live. As I was reading this, I was recalling how it fit perfectly with so many of my customers and I could actually see faces in my mind as Chief Rocka described all the characters you’ll find in a Fly Shop. So, I hope you enjoy the read on this arctic day.
PS- I hope to see some of you tonight at my talk at Montana Wild in Helena. I’ll be blabbering about BC Steelhead and have some fun photos and videos to ogle over. It starts at 6:30pm. Thanks, -Strainer

I love fly shops, I could live in a fly shop.   Often times shops have an abundance of just about everything I need to survive (beef jerky, cheap beer, and fly gear).  I spend a lot of time in the shop, which about 15% of that time is spent looking at gear/flies, 20% is remembering what the hell I came into the shop for in the first place, and the remaining balance is spent standing around chatting and listening in on conversations.  I find the conversations that can be heard and/or witnessed by a casual observer in the fly shop setting to be fascinating and highly entertaining.

  1. 1 out of every 4 times in a shop you will run into someone with a pattern so incredibly productive that they will show you, but it has to be in complete and total secrecy.  Sometimes it is a shop employee, a…

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