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Old 02-22-18, 08:41 AM   #11
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 194

Really appreciate all the great feedback and context! Will review all of this to plan our trip!
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Old 02-22-18, 11:46 AM   #12
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Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Columbus, GA
Posts: 904

Originally Posted by Alexander.Foti View Post
Really appreciate all the great feedback and context! Will review all of this to plan our trip!
Keep us posted. I was in Bozeman last summer (non-fishing trip) and plan on returning soon to do some fishing. I'd really like to read about your adventure. So much water near-by you all probably will not want to leave.
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Old 03-02-18, 04:29 PM   #13
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Grant Park
Posts: 523

I am usually in Livingston in late August/early September and plan about 10 days of fishing. My first day I usually spend on the Gallatin since I fly into Bozeman/Belgrade early in the day. I usually spend several days hiking and fishing both sides of Paradise valley, a few days in the park, and a few days on the Boulder and West Boulder. Oh, and always at least a day on DePuy's spring creek (usually save that for my birthday)!

It may be that I'm cheap, but very rarely do I float. In fact, I've only floated the Stone three times and those were times when I've just gone with a friend or a friendly stranger who offered to take me on their day off. Always a great time, but I never have caught as many fish or enjoyed it as much as wading...

That's just me, though!

One of these friends is a fantastic guide and I will gladly give you his info if you send me a PM. Also, if you want to explore non-float options in the area and want some advice on the Livingston/Paradise Valley or Innis areas, do let me know, I'm happy to chat about it :-)
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Old 03-07-18, 12:17 PM   #14
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Bozeman
Posts: 591

There's been a lot of great information here already, but I'm going to toss in my $0.02.

Staying in Bozeman is probably the best place to stay if you want to be centrally located to a bunch of water. Wading the Gallatin and tribs is right here, the Madison in Ennis is an hour away (the upper, an additional 30-40 minutes), the Yellowstone in the Paradise Valley is 45 minutes away (the upper, an additional 20-30 minutes, depending on location), and the upper MO is about 30 minutes away. The NE corner of the park (Lamar Valley) is a bit of a hike, but it's a bit of a hike from anywhere that isn't Gardiner or Cooke City. Plus, if you want some small stream experiences, there are a BUNCH that fish really well in the Gallatin Canyon (along 191 from BZN to Big Sky).

There's tons of guides at every fly shop. Call one and you can get booked. I'd go with someone specific that someone's already mentioned, though. Word of mouth is a great thing! Montana Troutfitters is a great fly shop and I have a friend that guides for them. Montana Anglers (used to be in West, I think) is opening a new place in downtown Bozeman; they'll be offering trips, too. If you're staying in BZN, it is hard to justify hiring someone to drive down from West unless they're really, REALLY good and can guarantee you tons of huge fish all day long. Here's a hot tip: if someone makes that guarantee, they're probably lying!

September is one of my favorite times to fish. Tourists are mostly gone, the fish are fat after a summer of feeding, and the weather is normally GLORIOUS. One note: Montana State may have a football game scheduled the weekend you're here. While nothing like a team in the SEC, bobcat fans are still pretty ravenous and hotels can book up pretty quickly. Book early, in other words.

Re: The Roost: meh. I'm not a big fan of their chicken, but their biscuits are tolerable. Notably, though, they DO have a picture of The Big Chicken in their restaurant! If you want good restaurants, check out Willow Creek Saloon in Willow Creek (10 miles south of Three Forks; blink and you'll miss it). WOAH DANG. That's where you need to be, but be sure to make a reservation. If you like ribs, get their ribs. If you like country fried steak, get that. Stacy's in Gallatin Gateway is also **** good. Copper downtown is tasty. Burger Bob's downtown is good for, well, burgers. There's some BBQ joints in town but none are really all that good. For breakfast or lunch, try Cateye Cafe, Nova Cafe, Lot G, Feed Cafe, or Main Street Over Easy. All good places for breakfast. Let me know if you're looking for something specific and I can offer some more alternatives.
"Of course, the most elegant experiments require no statistics at all." - A. Zale, Leader, U.S. Geological Survey Montana Cooperative Fishery Research Unit

Last edited by KnotSlippin'; 03-07-18 at 12:30 PM.
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