This extremely popular fish-out is what most of you have waited your 3 years in the LTFF program for: The Intermediate Class's trip to Montana always seems to be the highlight for most students in the program and is the one trip that just about everyone who goes each year ends up pleading to get the chance to go again. But we can never promise that and I can't even take more than 11 from the class each year. So, if you can be one of those lucky 11 this year that gets to go this year on July 7-11, you'll want to do it.
We will be float fishing a famed tailwater stretch of the upper Missouri River for 3 days (Sat. - Mon.) out of Craig, Montana each day. The dry fly and nymph fishing for the big strong rainbow and brown trout in this incredibly abundant fishery is world renowned. (Our club president Willy George loves this place and often stays in his camper there for at least 2 weeks to fish the "Mo" at this time of year, as he has done for years.)
We will be fishing with the HeadHunters Fly Shop's guides, some of the very best you'll ever experience. They will supply all the gear required including fly rods, leaders, flies, etc. However, you are welcome to bring your own gear if you desire, especially if you can stick around to fish this river and one or more of the other famous rivers in the area on your own, or with a guide that maybe a couple of you will line up afterword to float or wade/walk with.
Sandals or water shoes, rather than waders, are advised on these Missouri River drift boats for most of the warm sunny days at this time of year which may offer only a brief afternoon rain shower. However, if you don't bring waders (only bring them because you need them for something else), DO remember to pack a pair of rain pants along with a good-quality rain jacket. A cold, all-day-long rainstorm on our first day on the river a couple years ago taught us this lesson.
There will be a Pre-fishout Meeting on Wednesday evening, Feb. 22, at 6:30PM at the clubhouse, with plenty of snacks and beverages, for all those Intermediate students interested in this trip. (Come early and try out some of the award-winning Douglas fly rods that afternoon and enter free rod raffle before 5:30 --see calendar event.) Transportation options, logistics, gear, licensing, the fish-out rules, etc. will be covered at this meeting, so do try hard to be there if you can. I will send out some notes to those who can't make it, but you should look at this pre-meeting as a good opportunity to coordinate your travel plans or to team up for traveling and fishing in the area, or for sharing car rentals.
We have rented the Jumping Rainbow Lodge, a large house that is situated right on the river about 8 miles from Craig. We have rented this house for several years because it makes a great home base for us and there is nothing in town as big.
The tiny town of Craig, MT is located on Interstate I-15 about halfway between the cities of Helena and Great Falls (it's about a 50 mile drive northeast from Helena and a little shorter drive southwest from Great Falls). If you are planning to fly there, the airports in those two cities are the closest possibilities, but there is also Bozeman, MT which is about a 2-1/2 hour drive away and Missoula, MT, which is probably at least as far. Flights fill up quickly, so start looking at your options and checking available flights and prices before the pre-meeting to be able to discuss your preference for driving there or flying to one of these airports.
If possible, you want to arrive at the lodge sometime Friday afternoon July 8 (I should be able to get us into the house around 3PM) and you won't need to leave there until Tuesday, July 11, before 10AM since we've also rented the house for Monday night again to allow a full day's fishing on Monday.
We will cook our own group dinner on Friday night, but dinner on Saturday and Sunday will be catered (to provide left-overs for Monday night). Lunches will be provided by the guides Sat.-Mon. and we will have food in the house for a quick breakfast each morning. Volunteering for helping to cook and clean-up will be covered in the pre-meeting.
The fee for this event again this year is $1400, which covers the 3 full days of top-notch guided fishing and gear, 4 nights in the lodge, and all meals and beverages (including wine and beer) for most of those 4 days. It does NOT cover your transportation expenses, a Montana fishing license (with a req'd. small conservation fee), or the guide gratuities.
Those who have gone on this fish-out before have had some of their best fishing days ever, and had such a great time together, that they would go again in a heartbeat if we'd only let them. If you can't make it, you will definitely make someone else happy.
This trip is limited to 11 Intermediates, so sign up as soon as you can so that you don't miss out! Registration will start at 12:00 NOON on Monday, FEBRUARY 13.
Contact for info:
JOHN MURPHY (firstname.lastname@example.org) 650-799-1695