Sunday, January 20, 2019

Early birds get the cutts and graylings

If you think my co-worker Larry is crazy for beginning his mountain-lake exercise regimen in January this year, you might miss this boat this summer.

As predicted by some weather outlets, El Nino has given the Northern Rockies a warm, dry winter. While we are enjoying the mild weather, it has negative implications for our fishing summer.
Here in southwestern Montana, expect an early and brief runoff. Our low snowpack (see below) coupled with expected continued warmth and dryness indicates that relatively little water is in the mountains to melt into streamflow when the mountains thaw in April and May. In good water years, runoff in valley-bottom mainstems can last well into July, but in a year like this, it's not uncommon for it to be over in early June.