What Is the Best Time to Go Fly Fishing in Montana?

Fly fishing in Montana is an incredible experience for anyone who enjoys the great outdoors. With its vast mountain ranges, crystal clear rivers and streams, and abundant wildlife, Montana has become a popular destination for anglers from all over the world. The best time to go fly fishing in Montana depends on what species of fish you’re Targeting and the type of water you’ll be fishing in.

In general, spring is the best season for fly fishing in Montana.

As temperatures start to rise after the long winter months, many species of trout begin their annual spawning runs. During this time, they can be found moving upriver from their winter homes to their spawning grounds near the headwaters of rivers and streams. This is an ideal time to Target large trout with dry flies as they are actively feeding on insects that are emerging from the thawing waters.

Summer is a great season for fly fishing in Montana as well, but the focus shifts to different species and techniques. During this time, many anglers Target rainbow trout using deeper nymph patterns as they move into colder tributaries away from the warming waters of larger rivers and streams. Other species such as brown trout can also be found during this period, as they make their way upriver towards cooler waters.


is another excellent time for fly fishing in Montana. As temperatures cool down again with the changing of the seasons, many species will start to move back downriver towards their winter homes. This is an ideal time to Target large brown trout with streamers and other baitfish patterns as they feed heavily on migrating baitfish before settling into their winter haunts.

Winter can also be a great time for fly fishing in Montana depending on where you’re located and what species you’re Targeting. Even though some rivers and streams may freeze over during this period, there are still plenty of places where anglers can find fishable water if they know where to look.

No matter what season it is, there are always opportunities for fly fishing in Montana if you know where to look. From spring spawning runs to fall migrations and winter hideouts, there’s something for everyone no matter when they decide to visit this beautiful state.


In conclusion, the best time to go fly fishing in Montana depends on what type of fish you want to Target and where you plan on fishing. In general, spring is considered one of the best times due to increased insect activity and active trout populations; however summer through fall can offer excellent conditions as well depending on your location. Winter can still offer good opportunities if you know where to look or have access to unfrozen waters.

Photo of author

Lindsay Collins