Gallatin River Fishing Gallery

The Gallatin River is an iconic Montana fishing destination with its origins high in the Yellowstone National Park backcountry. The river transforms from a small, meadow creek to a medium-sized river slowly meandering through the wide open spaces of the Gallatin Valley.

The fly fishing opportunities are endless on the Gallatin River with wading in the Gallatin Canyon and float trips along the lower stretches, downstream of Manhattan, Montana.

Fins and Feathers Guide Service operates fly fishing trips in Montana on the less accessible, lower stretches of the Gallatin River. With over two decades of experience as a Bozeman Montana fly fishing outfitter, count on our expertise to avoid the crowds commonly associated with fishing the Gallatin River.


Gallatin River Fly Fishing Trips Photo Gallery


Flyfishing Montana on the Gallatin River

  • The headwaters of the Gallatin River are high in the backcountry of Yellowstone National Park. Anglers fishing the upper stretches - between the headwaters and Big Sky, Montana - can expect a classic river with runs, riffles, and deep pools in a river that gradually increases in size during its journey north.
  • Whitewater enthusiasts and fly fishers are drawn to the river for its abundant, public access and scenic beauty once it enters the Gallatin Canyon between Big Sky and Gallatin Gateway.
  • Fly fishing the Gallatin River near Bozeman is a mix of float and wade-fishing opportunities as the river flows through a mixed agricultural landscape before joining the Jefferson and Madison Rivers to form the Missouri River, near Three Forks, Montana.

Planning A Gallatin River Fly Fishing Trip

  • Fishing Season: A year-round trout fishery, the best time of the year to fly fish on the Gallatin River is between July and September. Expect good pre-runoff fly fishing in late April with nymphs and streamers. Winter and early spring fly fishing options vary with the weather, with good results on mild days during stable weather patterns.
  • Access: There is abundant public access in the Gallatin Canyon at US Forest Service recreation sites and in the Gallatin Valley at a variety of Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks FAS.

Tips For Gallatin River Fishing Success

  • Avoid crowds by walking along the riverbed, below the high water mark to get away from popular access sites.
  • Use fine tippets and stealthy approaches when fishing the Gallatin River during low flows and clear water
  • Floating the lower Gallatin River requires minimum flows of 500 CFS and anglers should be mindful of mid-river obstructions that occur following periods of high flows.

Fly fishing in Montana on the legendary Gallatin River is a terrific experience for DIY anglers in the middle and upper reaches near Big Sky, Montana. Our Bozeman fly fishing guides specialize in introducing anglers to the lower Gallatin River on float trips between Manhattan and Three Forks, Montana.

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