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Blackfoot River map by FWP


Continental Divide to its confluence with the Clark Fork River.  Fishing can be excellent as early as April and continue to fish well through October.  Dry Fly hatches are prolific throughout

Groups such as Big Blackfoot Chapter of Trout Unlimited, The Blackfoot Challenge and the Montana Land Reliance, The Nature Conservancy and the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks devote much time to protecting the Blackfoot's ecosystem.

Blackfoot River map by FWP

pdf Map above is from Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.  (Click here -FWP Blackfoot Map- to link to FWP’s map)

clients on the banks of the Blackfoot
Blackfoot in September photo

Just about every fly fisherman has heard of the Big Blackfoot River.  Well known from Norman Maclean's novel, A River Runs Through It, and made famous by the movie of the same name.  The Blackfoot River is a fun river to float, fish & explore.  There are literally dozens of float trips to do on the Blackfoot with some of the stretches containing some exciting white water.  Wade fishing can also be a good way to fish this river though much of the river runs through private land so access in many places can be a little tough.

The Blackfoot winds its way 146 miles from the

the summer and offer the angler fabulous fishing throughout the day.  Native Westslope Cutthroat and Bull Trout as well as wild Rainbows, Browns and Brook Trout inhabit the river which offers the angler the opportunity to catch all five trout species in a single day.  (Of course there are more than a few "Montana Bonefish" in these waters and you couldn't complete the true Blackfoot River Grand Slam without catching a few Whitefish!)

The Big Blackfoot has long been the source for many peoples' recreational trips to Montana.  Much of the popularity is due to the movie, "A River Runs Through It" (though it was not actually filmed on this river).  The Blackfoot is known for it's scenic beauty and historical significance. (Meriwether Lewis journeyed up the Blackfoot and over the continental divide on the return trip of the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery over 200 years ago.)

Favorite Flies for the Blackfoot:


#12-#18 Parachute Adams

#10-#16 Tan, Brown, & Olive Elk Hair Caddis

#2-#6 Salmonfly Patterns (they are normally in mid-June through early July)

[Stalcup’s , Jacklin’s Giant Salmonfly, Rogue Foam Stone, etc.]

#6-#10 Golden Stonefly Patterns (they are normally in mid-July into August)

[Jacklin’s Giant Golden {doubles as a hopper too!}, Rogue Foam, etc.]

#4-#12 Parachute Madam-X’s [aka. PMX or Bugmeister] (Peacock, Yellow, Royal)

#8-#14 Royal Wulff

#6-#12 Stimulators (Orange, Royal & Yellow)

#10-#14 Humpies (Green, Red)

#6-#10 Hopper patterns (Stalcup’s, Dave’s)

#12-#18 Ants & Beetles


#2-#10 Stonefly Nymphs (Brown &/or Black, Golden)

#6-#10 Tungsten Trout Retriever (Black Lab, Chocolate Lab & Golden Retriever)

#4-#10 Bitch Creek Nymphs

#10-#14 B/H Prince Nymphs (Brass or Tungsten)

#10-#14 B/H Hare’s Ear (Brass or Tungsten, regular and flashback)

#14-#16 Lightning Bugs  (Silver &/or Gold)

#12-#14 Copper Johns

#14-#18 Bead-Head Pheasant Tail (regular and flashback)

#6-#12 San Juan Worms


#4-#8 Bead-Head Woolly Buggers (Black, Olive Wine-Tail, Brown and Olive)

#4-#8 Bead-Head Girdle Buggers (Black, Olive Wine-Tail, Brown, JJ Specials)

#6 Flash-Fry Zonkers (White, Brown/Yellow, Black)

#2-#6 Fish-Skull MO Minnow

#4 Skiddish Smolt

#4 DG’s Bugz Bunny (Black, Tan or Purple)

#4 Sheila’s Sculpin

#4-#6 Exasperators or Strung-Out Streamers (Black, White, Olive, Brown.)

#4-#8 Zonkers (Black, White, Olive, Brown)

#4-#6 Muddler Minnow (Kiwi, marabou and/or traditional)

#4-#6 Conehead Bow River Bugger (White or Black)

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Below is the live streamflow info for the Blackfoot River near Nevada Creek

Below is the live streamflow info for the Blackfoot River near Bonner

Established 1994


Downtown Helena Store:

(406) 449-2292

FAX-  (406) 449-2293

Missouri River Store in Craig:

(406) 235-3433

FAX-  (406) 235-3443

We have many of these patterns either as recipes & instruction or videos on our Fly Tying Pages.  Click on the colored text to the left.

Blackfoot River waterproof map by River Rat Maps.  This is THE river map for the Missouri!  This detailed map is 24” x 10” opened and fold to 4”x10”.  Map features:  *Waterproof,  *Tearproof,  *Access Locations,  *Access Descriptions,  *River Mileage,  *Camping Locations,  *Land Ownership,  *GPS Coordinates,  *Rapids,  *Popular Game Fish,  *Points of Interest.  This is the map you will want to help you plan your trip and to take with you on the river!

$12.95 (includes shipping)  We also have the Smith River, Missouri River and others as well.