NOW HIRING FOR THE 2023 SEASON: The Retail Sales Associate/Apprentice Guide

The Bighorn Angler is the premier fly shop, lodge, and guide service on the legendary Bighorn River located in Fort Smith Montana and is seeking a knowledgeable, passionate fly fisher with the desire to provide our patrons with a world class experience. Read more...

The river is finally getting to its prime shape.  Clarity has really come back and grass is a minimal issue.  Water temps are dipping into the high 40’s.  The fish are happy and browns are in full spawn mode.  As we always preach, please don’t harass these fish!

Fly patterns will pretty much stay the same throughout the rest of the Winter.  Read more...

We hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!  There is some nice weather on the way to the Bighorn valley, at least for a few days.  We were hoping the water would clear up by now, but doesn’t look to be the case.  I was on the Upper 3 a couple days back and clarity remains about 2′ at best.  Read more...

We’re still a bit out from having clear Winter flows but overall fishing has been pretty decent.  There is still grass throughout the whole system and the clarity isn’t ideal, but better than past years.  The cold weather on tap for this week should help speed up the turnover process. Read more...

We’re in the midst of turnover time on the Bighorn.  Green water and a good amount of drifting grass pose obstacles to the angler.  There have been some good reports from the streamer world and OK reports from the nymph guys.  We need some colder night time temps to speed the flush of the river up, which will probably be a couple/few weeks still..  Read more...

It’s finally happening – Bighorn Lake is starting to turn and the river is getting its famous ‘Fall Green.’  For the conditions at the present moment, the fishing has been pretty decent.  I’ve seen it a lot tougher in previous years! We’re seeing good numbers of fish at certain windows of the day (late morning- mid afternoon) and we’ve seen some big boys come out of the woodwork as well (like the fish above). Read more...

I guess the best way to describe the fishing is ‘interesting?’.  Definitely a bit off and on right now.  Your best window is late morning till about 4 or so.  Don’t rush out too early, you won’t miss much!  We are getting some big fish and it’s great to see a ton of 10-14″ fish as well.  Read more...

We’re heading into that weird time of year.  Hatches are dwindling, weather patterns are changing and the crowds are dying down.  There are definitely some fish to be caught, but it’s not been a ‘gimme’.  Stick to later mornings and later afternoons for the best success.  The Bighorn is still in great shape with clear flows and some drifting grass, but not enough to ruin your fishing.  Read more...

Fishing remains pretty steady on the Bighorn despite the up and down weather.  Mornings have been typically slower and fishing picks up around 11 or so. The upper 3 has less drifting vegetation making it a cleaner option.  There are a few more folks taking advantage of it too.  Below 3 Mile, there is definitely some drifting grass, but if you keep your bugs clean, you’ll catch fish. Read more...

We just had a flow bump up to 3200 CFS a few days back.  It’s changed the river character a bit, especially with the addition of the grass growth.  Despite these changes, the majority of fish are willing to eat.  The unfortunate side is our hatches have waned and there is a fair amount of drifting vegetation below 3 Mile Access.  Read more...