Our Rivers

Gallatin River Fishing in September

Gallatin River Fly Fishing in September

In autumn, the Gallatin River fishing picks up with cooling water and the changing of seasons. The river feels renewed with the dispersing crowds and the passing of summer's hottest temperatures. Flows gain volume and cooling influence from early snow and the ending of summer irrigation. Active trout sense the seasonal shift,

The Gallatin Canyon and Gallatin Gateway stretches offer ample public access and the low flows make it easy to navigate the river bottom on foot. Expect wary fish near the banks and obvious lies.

September Hatches on the Gallatin River

Blue-winged olives and Midge hatches return to the Gallatin as the air and water cool with the longer nights of early Autumn. Tiny Pseudocleon mayflies will be plentiful on warm days.

Sporadic hatches of Western Red Quill mayflies are occasionally encountered in the canyon as well.

Sparse hatches of large Mayflies like Hecuba, Yellow Drakes, and Ephron can be found in the lower Gallatin River stretches.

Although hatching insects are active in September, success with dry flies is sporadic. However, the Rainbow, Cutthroat, and Brown Trout actively feed on the nymphs of hatching insects throughout the day.

Fall Fly Fishing Techniques for the Gallatin River

Streamer fishing on the Gallatin River is at its best in September and October. Overcast, cool days bring idyllic conditions to target the large Brown Trout of the lower Gallatin River.

Nymphing with tandem fly rigs in the Gallatin Valley and canyon stretches consistently find trout in the deeper runs.

River flows are low, and the water runs clear, especially in the stretches above Gallatin Gateway. Anglers fishing with a long leader, fine tippet, and small flies are bound to have more success. Employ a tactical, measured approach to the river and make accurate casts with minimal false casts under these conditions.

Bozeman Fly Fishing Guide Pro-Tip:

Fly fishing the Gallatin River in September is one of the best months for finding trophy Brown Trout as they migrate, getting ready for their spawn in late fall. The best water for larger trout is between Williams Bridge FAS to Four Corners FAS near Belgrade. Covering a lot of water while using streamers like Zonkers, Wooly Buggers, and Peanut Envies in white, olive, and black variations stripped quickly off of banks can be extremely effective.

Our Gallatin River Fly Box for September

Gallatin River Guided Fly Fishing in September

The Gallatin River becomes fickle in September and fishes less consistently as the month progresses. Cooling water temperatures on the lower river is a signal to the trout that inhabit these stretches that the stress of summer is in the past.

With over 23 years of experience outfitting on the Gallatin River, our experts have learned to pay close attention to water levels and temperatures as the seasons change. We typically float the Gallatin River through mid-September, turning our attention fully to the other rivers near Bozeman for the remainder of the season.

Gallatin River fishing day trips with Fins and Feathers Guide Service in Bozeman can be booked online, via e-mail, or by calling us at 1-406-468-5019. Contact Us for questions regarding our Montana fly fishing options.

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