Spring has sprung here in Ennis, Montana! We have received a fantastic amount of moisture the past few weeks, bringing our snowpack to 144% of average. The leaves are starting to pop and our grass is greening up. After a long winter, vibrant greens are a welcome sight. The sandhill cranes have returned, moose are grazing, goslings are hatching, and ospreys have chicks in their nests. Montana is waking up!
We had a great season opener, with a large group of return guests joining us our first weekend. This group had a blast landing some healthy trout, even with some snow and rain coming down. Over the last month, the Madison has consistently produced, with multiple hogs over 20 inches already landed this year! From seasoned fishing veterans to first time fishermen and women, nice fish have been caught by all! The newly restored Jurassic Pond at the Ranch is fishing great, with the Kamloops eager to take a fly and display some aerial exercises before being reeled into shore and released.
Scott Warren, our Executive Chef for 13 years now, has produced some amazingly divine meals for our guests to rave reviews. This year he is assisted by Matt Pease, our new Sous Chef from North Carolina. Matt was drawn to the area by the fly fishing, and he’s settling in nicely to the MVR team and Ennis. Welcome Matt! So far this year, some house favorites have been brioche French toast with a berry sauce, duck and apple quesadillas for appetizers, freshly baked sundried tomato bread, Montana-raised duck breast with Flathead cherries and a lemongrass glaze…just to name a few!
Last weekend, the Channels section of the Madison River opened, and the trout were sad to see Elizabeth down there. She landed five nice fish in her first hour of fishing on a gorgeous Spring day. What a way to welcome the nice weather!
With our amazing guests’ help, Madison Valley Ranch was named a 2013 Lodge of the Year Finalist by Orvis! We were honored to be chosen as a finalist, and we are continuously honored by the reviews posted by all of you on Orvis’ website. A huge THANK YOU to everyone who filled out a survey (which also enters you in our drawing for an Orvis Helios rod!).