Feeder Streams Receding

The Bighorn River looking downstream from Afterbay Dam. Notice the band of muddy water on the right.

Feeder streams flowing into the Bighorn River have begun receding after the heavy rains of the last three days. The Bighorn will be back in shape quickly. The upper 3 miles is fishable right now. The upper 7 miles upstream of Mountain Pocket Creek should be fishable tomorrow or the day after that. It won’t be long and the entire upper 13 miles below Afterbay (at least on the left side below Soap Creek) will be ready to go.

This was a big rain storm. The Pryor Mountains (60 miles west) received six inches of rain. Wyola, Montana (my old home town) received around five. As a result, the Little Bighorn River has been flooding and was responsible for Interstate 90 being closed near Hardin. Highway 313, the main artery up the Bighorn Valley, was also closed.

We actually had several reports of good fishing yesterday. I guess this doesn’t surprise me, since the Bighorn River is so full of fish. If you can find some semi-clear water and work it hard, it’s going to happen. That being said, the muddy water has made the fishing difficult.

The Bureau of Reclamation has now lowered Bighorn River water flows to 3,500 cfs in an attempt to alleviate downstream flooding. Bighorn Lake is rising rapidly, so river flows will have to be increased soon.