Madison River Yellowstone National Park
Angie Marsh fishing Madison River
Copyright 2015 James Marsh
Fly Fishing The Madison River In
Yellowstone National Park
The Madison River is the most famous trout stream in
the World. One could fish the entire length of the river
and still not know it all well. This part covers the section
of the Madison inside Yellowstone National Park only.
We have a separate section for the Madison outside of
the park. Fly fishing the Madison River is the dream
destination of all avid fly anglers.

The Madison River is formed by the confluence of two
other famous trout streams, the Gibbon River and the
Firehole River. It's a good sized stream that's about
twenty miles long from its beginning to its exit from the
park near West Yellowstone, Montana.

Keep in mind this isn't just a great Yellowstone National
Park fly fishing destination. The section in the park is
only the beginning of the large, best known river in the
United States if not the World. We have a completely
different section on the
Madison River outside the park.

The Madison is one of the few rivers where you can
catch a large rainbow trout while a herd of elk or bison
observe your every move. It's also a location where you
may find yourself fighting a fish out in the middle of the
river with dozens of tourist on the bank cheering for you.

The river can be easy to fish at times, and as tough as
any to fish at other times. Its currents are tricky and can
be very deceptive. The surface of much of the water is
slick and smooth and the trout can get a good look at
your flies as well as you if your not careful. Making a
good presentations in the smooth flows can be very

Its brown and rainbow trout are wild and its hatches
diverse and prolific. It can be a dry fly angler's paradise
at the right time and place. At times It can challenge the
highest skilled anglers and yet at other times, give up
one of its large trout to someone new to fly fishing. Fly
fishing the Madison River, inside and outside of the
park, is fishing one of the World's best trout streams.

The Yellowstone fishing season is a short one due to its
high elevations but good fishing in the Madison Valley
last about as long as any of the park's streams.
Except during the short runoff period, the Madison
fishes very good during the last week of May and the
month of June.
Fishing during the hot months of the summer varies
greatly, depending on the weather and water conditions.
Some years, It can be too warm to fish on some July and
August days.
Autumn can be the very best time for fly fishing the
Madison River. The water cools and large trout move
into the river from Hebgen Lake.

Fly Fishing Guide to the Madison River
Being able to consistently catch trout from the Madison
River is a huge challenge. It changes not only day in
and day out, it often changes by the hour. To be
consistently successful, one has to remain very
observant, very flexible and constantly adapt to the
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Type of Stream

Rainbow Trout
Rocky Mountain Whitefish
(Wild Trout)


Northwestern Wyoming, YNP

Nearest Towns
West Yellowstone, Montana

Last of May - October


Park License
Yellowstone National Park License

National Weather Service Link

Hatch Chart
Perfect Fly Hatch Chart

Fly Fishing Guide

Hatches and Flies

Fly Fishing Gear

Stream Flow Data:
Real Time USGS Data
Madison River, YNP
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Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.

2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.

3. Email us (
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.

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U. S. Orders over $100 are shipped via
Priority Mail.