Every year, we have a group of serious anglers who visit Madison Valley Ranch at the end of October. Yes, the weather can be finicky, the wind just might blow, but there is something magical about Autumn in Big Sky Country. Just as the leaves changes from green to oranges and browns, our brown trout go through a beautiful transformation as well. In their pre-spawning glory, Salmo trutta are an epic sight. Some get really dark, almost brown (image that), while some brighten up to a glowing orange. They are known to be aggressive and active, attacking streamers with a vengeance.
Located just an hour from Madison Valley Ranch (and Ennis, Montana), Yellowstone National Park is an angler’s dream come true. As your fly drifts over a fishy-looking shelf, the eerie bugle of a bull elk reaches your ear and mingles with the gurgling of the crystal-clear water. Mini-geysers spray into the bluebird sky. A grizzly or two might wander by as you nervously keep casting and surreptitiously remove the safety from your bear spray. You observe a coyote pounce on a mouse as you look around for the Nat Geo camera crew. The landscape radiates a serene beauty that calms the mind. That is… until your fly is inhaled by a two foot brownie while you gasp audibly.
A few photos from the Park were captured yesterday, posted below for you to enjoy.