Fishing Season: Spring

Missouri River - MT

Fishing Outlook & Conditions

Water Temp:


CrossCurrents Fly Shop's Tip of the Week

The Rainbows have moved into shallower gravel and have made their spawning redds. So, watch where you step and DON'T TREAD ON REDDS!!! -Remember, the MO is a WILD TROUT fishery and the the fish in the river have the sole responsibility to make the fish for the future. The least we can do is to not disturb them or their redds when they are *doing their thing!*

Directions open in app

Map of Missouri River

Water Flow Data

Tidal Conditions

5-Day Outlook as of 5/7/21

It's May - so rain for a couple of days then, sunshine, then calm, then windy! We've got BWO on the docket for Mother's Day Weekend -Free Fishing in MT too!!

Techniques & Tips as of 5/7/21

Nymphs will get you quantity. Streamers will get you quality. Dry Flies will get you Style Points! We're doing all three in a day now so pick your technique and get out on the MO.

Current Conditions as of 5/7/21

It's May - so rain for a couple of days then, sunshine, then calm, then windy! We've got BWO on the docket for Mother's Day Weekend -Free Fishing in MT too!!

Local Species Available Spring

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    Rainbow Trout

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    Brown Trout

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    and Whitefish

CrossCurrents Fly Shop's Recommended Fly Patterns

"Must-have" fly fishing patterns in descending order of importance:

Name: Colors: Size(s):
Lightning Bug Purple #16-#18
Tungsten Cone Head Woolly Bugger Black/Silver #4-#8
Bead Head Woolly Bugger Streamer Olive/Grey #14-16
Blue Wing Olive Parachute N/A #18-#20
Sprout Baetis Emerger BWO #18-#20
Smoke Jumper Gray, Purple #18-#22
Vernille San Juan Worm red, pink #12
Bead Head Flash Bugger Olive/Purple #16-#18
Sparkle Minnow Sculpin, Black, Silver #4-#6
Caviar Scud pink, orange #12-#16

Lightning Bug

A prospecting nymph fly that trout can't resist.

CrossCurrents Fly Shop's Recommended Gear

Description: About Missouri River

The Missouri River is one of the largest and most easily accessed rivers in Montana. The mighty MO is certainly a trout factory! Three reservoirs in a row make this tailwater fishery have a constant water flow and stable temperatures from day to day. Amazingly fertile, with prolific hatches of mayflies, caddis, and midges, the Missouri is a 365 day river. You'll see fish rising just about every day of the year. Take a float trip down the Missouri and you'll know why it made such a powerful impression on Lewis and Clark during their great expedition. During the summer, caddis and mayfly hatches are so prolific that it looks as though there is a mini blizzard over the river. This river is known for its excellent dry fly fishing. But it's also amazing when fished with emergers. or small bead-heads as a dropper behind a dry fly. The MO fishes fantastically in the shoulder seasons of Spring and Fall with Baetis and Midges for dries and big, ugly streamers! That is when some very big fish are caught! The Missouri throws itself into the heated debate of "Row vs. Wade" because it is so perfectly suited to angle from both a drfit boat (or other water craft) as well as wade fishing on foot. With an adult trout population (Rainbows and Browns over 10") over 6,000 per mile and an average size of 16"-18", it's not too hard to figure out why the Missouri ranks up there with many people's favorite places to fish!

Nearest Airport:

Helena, Great Falls


BWO, March Browns, Midges

Best Time to Fish:

late morning through afternoon

Best Stretch:

Craig to Mid

Best Access:

Holter Dam, Wolf Creek Bridge, Craig, Stickney, Mid-Canon, Mtn Palace and walk-ins off the Recreation Road.