Missouri River Fishing Report 11/12/15

Rainbow on the Missouri River

Everyone loves admiring big Rainbows in Autumn!

Late Autumn is here with an exclamation point!  The mornings are at or below freezing, it “warms” up to the 40’s and 50’s in the afternoon and the wind blows steady.  Sounds like steelhead weather to me!  (More on that in a future post!)  Why would you fish to the MO in mid-November?  It’s not because of the awesome weather -it’s because of the awesome fishing and solitude.  With the Missouri being a tailwater fishery (below a dam), the water temps are buffered from big swings -both daily and seasonally.  When other rivers in Montana succumb to frigid temperatures (30’s) and the trout in those waters slow down and go into their more mellow winter mode, the Missouri it still going strong with water temps in the upper 40’s and low 50’s.  As a result, the poikilothermic bugs and trout have a grand time in November.  We will have heavy hatches of Baetis and Midges everyday and the trout will move to eat them.  They will also chase streamers for that big bite of calories.  While trout on the Blackfoot are chillin, the MO trout are chuggin.  All the homeothermic angler needs to do is stay warm and they will be rewarded with a scrappy trout on the end of their leader!

Another advantage to getting out on the MO this month is the solitude that it can provide.  With every hunting season open and football in full swing, hockey, basketball, schools in session and couch potatoes are doing their thing – that leaves the rivers like the Missouri to us more dedicated anglers.  (Yes, some people call us stupid or crazy, but that’s okay.  A 20″ trout on BWO or a Bugger makes up for any dent in my self esteem by name callers!)

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On The Road Report: Streamer Session Edition


It’s that time of year again; hunters have taken to the hills, the ambitiously lethargic have returned to their recliners for the remainder of the year and the Salmo trutta are getting feisty. Arguably one of the more voracious fresh water salmonids the fall Brown Trout feeding frenzy is kicking off. The frenzy comes from the necessity of packing on girth in preparation for their annual fall spawn, the inevitability of a fast approaching winter and straight up pissing off these predators protecting their eggs once they have spawned. Like a fat man at a buffet table these fish feed aggressively and opportunistically and with an endless supply of food rolling past their faces, they can pick out the most prime of morsels. With a few days reprieve from the shop I spent some time on a few stretches of semi-local freestone exploiting this genetic weakness.

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Missouri River Fishing Report 9.11.15


Finally getting back into the swing of things here in Craig MT; personally and fishing wise. With all the college kiddos’ back on campus the Craig shop called in the Calvary, so for the last few weeks yours truly has been kickin’ it in the town of two bars and too many trout. The primary reasons I’ve failed to provide you fine folks with the most up to date fishing info as the summer crowds subside and the fall fishing starts to pick up. My deepest apologies. Now that we’ve got all that out-of-the-way, let’s get down to business, you didn’t come to read about the awesome times I’ve been having at Uncle Joes Bar (I hope).

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Missouri River Fishing Report 8.22.15


Cool mornings, mild days and very little crowds so far this weekend here in Craig, my question to all you folks kicking back at home is pretty simple; what in the hell are you thinking? Yea fishing can be challenging this time of year but things are starting to turn around as we hit the latter end of August. Nice rain shower last night put down the smoke and its sounds like it should stay clear for the rest of the weekend. Weather is looking good for the upcoming week as well, a few warmer days at the beginning of the week with things leveling out by Wednesday & Thursday. Now let’s get to the goods…. Continue reading

Strainer gets Interviewed by Tom Rosenbauer for the Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast

Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by my long time friend, Tom Rosenbauer, for his awesome podcasts he hosts and produces, The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast.  Tom and I “sat down” to talk about fishing the MO and other waters in Montana in the busy and “dog days” of summer.  It was a lot of fun talking about the subjects I love -fly fishing, the MO, “other” waters and shop stuff.


Tom is a great interviewer and I think we touched on subjects that many people will find informative and helpful in their own adventures to the MO and beyond.  Check out this and the other podcasts that Tom produces.  I think you’ll find Tom as legit as they get as a fly angler.  It’s easy to subscribe to his podcast in iTunes -Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast.  You can also listen to single episodes on feedburner -Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast.

Check out my Podcast Interview on the Orvis News:

Podcast: Lessons from the Missouri River with Chris Strainer