Looking for some salmonfly patterns that flat-out work for the Montana salmonfly hatch? Salmonfly season is upon us and if you are like us, you’re on the edge of your seat. There’s nothing quite like casting enormous foam dry flies at the bank and watching eager trout crush them. However, Montana’s salmonfly hatches are not a secret. It’s crucial to have the right flies on hand to stand out from the crowds. We’ve handpicked five of our favorite new salmonfly patterns for the upcoming season to give you the edge when the “big bugs” make an appearance.
1. Grizzly Hackle Water Walker
This pattern is custom tied for our Missoula fly shop and remains one of our favorite salmonfly patterns to date. The Water Walker pattern is known for its universal application as various stoneflies and grasshoppers. Our Water Walker is leggy and dark, with enough foam to suspend any salmonfly nymph. Need a pattern you can trust right out of the gate? Look no further.
A classic pattern from Umpqua, Morrish’s Flutterbug has quickly become one of our Missoula fly fishing guides‘ go-to’s on all of our rivers for the Montana salmonfly hatch. In a natural brown-orange color, this low-profile, extended-body salmonfly fishes just as good as it looks.
3. Dancin Ricky
There are some salmonfly patterns that just stand out compared to the rest. The Dancin Ricky is one of those patterns. Tied on a bent shank hook, the Dancin Ricky’s abdomen sits submerged in the water like a real stonefly — perfect for the Montana salmonfly hatch. And with knotted legs to mimic jointed stonefly legs, the Dancin Ricky looks like it could crawl off the table.
4. Rainy’s Cat Puke
This one is for our fans of natural materials. The Cat Puke is a high-riding mess of elk hair and peacock that drives trout crazy. It’s one of our favorites during the early days of the salmonfly hatch, where trout will happily take big, gawky stoneflies. From the bank or from the boat, the Cat Puke is a simply irresistible option this salmonfly season.
5. Jake’s CDC Blackout Stone
Last, but certainly not least, is Jake’s Blackout Stone. This fly is known for its thin, extended foam body and hefty CDC wing. Jake’s Blackout Stone floats like a cork, yet rides very low on the water. Long rubber legs on this fly give it lively movement and its dark profile serves a very realistic representation of a big salmonfly adult.
These are just several of our dozens of salmonfly patterns to choose from on our online fly shop. The salmonfly hatch rings in the Missoula fly fishing summer season of awesome mayfly and stonefly hatches that we have in Missoula. Prepare for this summer with any of these tried and true patterns — all available at our Missoula fly shop. But don’t just take our word for it! The only way to know is to get out on the river and see it yourself!