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Bitterroot River

Wednesday, March 29, 1:11 a.m. MDT


Current River Levels

For 7-day, 30-day, and one-year graphs, click bold type below.

GAGE LOCATION

DAY/YEAR
GRAPHS

CURRENT
STAGE/FLOW

WHAT TIME

W. Fk. Bitterroot / nr Conner

7 30 year

1.90 / 249

12 am

E. Fk. Bitterroot / nr Conner

7 30 year

- / -

N/A

Bitterroot / nr Darby

7 30 year

2.91 / 1190

12 am

Bitteroot / nr Missoula

7 30 year

5.63 / 4020

12 am


Weather

Click bold type for weather from NOAA, Accuweather, or The Weather Channel

CITY

Missoula

NOAA

Accuweather

TWC


What to Expect in March

How to use this section.


Hatches divided by half-month.  Super    Major    Minor    Slight    None

HATCH

NYMPH/
LARVA

PUPA/
EMERGER

DUN/
ADULT

EGG-
LAYER

Blue-winged olive

Spotted caddis

Green caddis

Golden stonefly

Salmonfly

Small black stonefly

Skwala

Cranefly

Midge

Sculpin

Baitfish

Roe


Skwala stonefly nymphs should be active now. Warmer conditions (second week of March?) could spur the nymphs to migrate toward shore. Brown or olive Hares Ears, or similarly colored standard stonefly imitations such as Kaufmanns Stonefly, are productive in size 8.

Adults will return to the water (if it's not too cold), so toss a Bitterroot Olive Stonefly or Clarks Stonefly (dark body, some yellow highlights) for the trout to think about. While other rivers in the Missoula area have Skwalas, the Bitterroot is the best place to experience this hatch. Look for rocky sections of the river: that's where the stoneflies will be.

Skwalas aren't the only game, however. March is one of the best months of the year for general nymphing. Trout are waking up from their winter doldrums and are not too fussy. They'll be receptive to standard patterns, such as San Juan Worms, Brassies, Egg Flies, Princes, and Pheasant Tails that are tumbled along the bottom.

By month's end you might see some March browns on the water. A size 12-14 brown-bodied Comparadun or CDC Cripple works well.

For more on March tactics and flies, see the Rivers in General forecast

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