5 DAY FORECAST
PRIME FEEDING TIMES
Hebgen lies north of West Yellowstone just outside of Yellowstone National Park. Public access to the best fly-fishing areas is good. Although wet-fly fishing can be productive, the main attraction here is dry-fly fishing to cruising fish. The "gulper" fishing gets going in early July with the hatches of Trico and Callibaetis mayflies. August is the top month. The most popular area is the Madison Arm at the east end of the lake. The access is good on either side of the Madison River from Highway 191. The South Fork Arm and the north shore along Highway 287 are also good fly-fishing areas. The fishing starts soon after sun-up and continues until early afternoon. The fish will be rising to Trico and Callibaetis mayflies. Sometimes the trout travel in schools and it will try your nerves as you wait to intercept them as they cruise toward you. The trick is to watch the riseforms carefully and determine in which direction the fish are traveling and how fast. Make the cast to the anticipated spot and wait. When the fish takes, it's an excitement that's hard to describe. Hebgen Lake has a good population of rainbows and browns with some cutthroat. Most of the fish run 15 to 18 inches with an occasional 20-incher. The browns usually hang close to the weedbeds while the rainbows prefer more open water. This is a productive lake and the fish are in excellent condition. Float tubes a the top choice for gulper fishing on Hebgen Lake but you'll get more mobility with a pontoon boat. Sometimes the trout are spread out and moving about is much slower in a float tube. Casting from a canoe to rising trout is my favorite way to fish Hebgen Lake. You can move quietly up on a feeding trout into close casting range. The fishing is consistent with Hebgen Lake and it can be a great getaway because it is almost never crowded.