Float flyfishing the madison river
June 14 and 17, 2006: October 5, 2003

First posted
Monday June 26, 2006 13:18
Thursday June 29, 2006 17:00

Several in-order objectives for essential non-gas-wasting 4680 mile travel between June 5 and 19, 2006 included

Heading out of North Dakota on I 94: badlands just before entering MT.

Billings motel room monday june 12, 2006

Technology is making our projects possible. Wireless internet in motel.

Tuesday June 13, 2000 ascending beartooth highway between red lodge and cooke city, mt.

Descending beartooth highway toward cooke city, mt.

Wednesday June 14, 2000 on madison river.

Patty and guide matt.

Patty is cold, wet and not too happy.

Lunch with fire to warm hands.

Victim, of more than 10.

Slide Inn

Campfire lodge. Between Hebgen and quake lake. Lunch June 15, 2006.

Fisherman not seen to catch any fish. But he looked to be having as much fun was we were watching him.

We visited Livingston and Bozeman, MT on thursday June 15.

Matt's business rig at Slide Inn, Saturday June 17, 2007.

Matt reports he drives about 100 essential non-gas-wasting miles per day in his essential business.

We had to make a decision as to go on a long [12 mile] or short [8 miles] float trip. In a long trip you cover more of the river. In short trip you stop to fish the good holes for a longer period. We took at short trip from the Palisades to Ruby creek.

Rigging-up at the Palisades.

Matt uses two floating plastic ball strike indicator so we can easily tell where the nymph flies are floating.

Here's Matt changing a fly

If fish weren't being caught, then Matt changed fly pattern. The top fly was a big rubber legs while the terminal fly was usually a San Juan worm or other very small fly.

Another of Matt's customers floated by


Guide Matt [Matt's brother] with about 16 inch brown trout.

And next with about 17.5 inch rainbow!

Trip cost $350 plus a $50 tip. Money well spent to keep essential america tourist economy working.

The madison was flowing about 2,000 cfs which makes it fairly hard to wade fly fish.

In the fall, the madison is flowing at about 800 cfs which means you can fish easily by wading.

In a float or guided trip you will catch more fish.

The guide generally know lots more than you do about catching fish!

Matt instructed bill to cast a bit upstream and about a foot away from a rock to catch the above two fish.

Matt said he made the above business card on his computer. Here's an email for matt: beematt@4grc.com.

Matt works out of Arrick's fly shop in west yellowstone. Arrick Swanson is from albuquerque. Arrick's father is also a retired Sandia labs employee.

We stayed four nights at Slide Inn, mt. It's always somewhat exciting staying in Slide, Mt.
The largest earthquake in Montana's history was the magnitude 7.3 Hebgen Lake earthquake of August 17, 1959. At 11:37 p.m., Mountain Standard Time, the earth beneath Hebgen Lake suddenly warped and rotated, generating a seiche that continued for about 11 1/2 hours. The first few waves were over 1 meter in height, large enough to flow over Hebgen Dam, a concrete core earthfill structure that was completed in 1914. Although the dam's concrete corewall cracked in 16 places, only a minor amount of seepage occurred. The surface of the lake, which contained 324,000 acre-feet at the time of the earthquake, dropped more than 3 meters because of the violent geologic changes.

The main tremor triggered a major landslide in the Madison River Canyon, about 9 kilometers downstream from Hebgen Dam. An estimated 80 million tons of rock jarred loose by the earthquake slid down the south wall of the canyon. The slide's volume was estimated at 37 to 43 million cubic yards. Nearly 2 kilometers of the river and highway (Montana 287) were buried to depths as great as 120 meters. At least 26 people in the Rock Creek Campground were buried by the slide. Two other campers were killed by a rolling boulder at Cliff Lake, west of Madison Valley. The slide formed a natural dam in Madison Canyon which blocked the flow of the Madison River and created a new lake which within a few weeks was about 60 meters deep, and extended almost to Hebgen Dam. It has been appropriately named "Earthquake Lake."

Bill was graduated from whitman college in june of 1959 and remembers the slide, mt disaster well.

Bill was in Pullman, WA for the eruption of Mt St Helens.

What's going to happen in July 2006. We may see, especially if we don't settle soon.

Saturday afternoon June 17, 2006, motel room number 6.

Here's a view looking away from the motel room.

When we left on Sunday morning June 18, 2006 there was ice on the windshield of blue cobalt.

We stayed Sunday night in Moab, UT where the temperature was 101 F.

Matt got me more interested in fly fishing in 2003. Here's some analog photo jpgs and information.
We spotted elk on Sunday October 5, 2003.

Matt threw two apples to the elk. But they didn't seem to see the apples. So Matt stopped the boat.

And the elk entered the water.

This is about 50 miles from Yellowstone park. So these are wild elk.

Matt tries to find his thrown apples.

And the elk visit bill in the boat where they get their ears rubbed.

This is almost enough to give up elk hunting.

Bill packed out an elk he shot near Buckhorn, NM. Not fun. And later gave the body to the homeless.

Here's the first of about ten unfortunate fish caught ... and, of course, released.