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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I will be headed to Montana for fourteen days. When we plan a trip there is a host of things we need to prepare for and some people my say I go a little over the top.
Here is an example of the amount of effort and detail I put into a trip. We will be leaving on September 16that zero dark thirty and driving to Eureka, Montana arriving on the afternoon of the 18th. We are driving because we will have access to two watercrafts while we are there. One craft is in the Helena and the other in Eureka.

While in Eureka we will be guided on the Flathead River most likely the Middle Fork. I am sad because I wanted to fish the North Fork of the Flathead, but she will be very boney “low water”. The Snow melt will be done when we show up.

The first day of fishing on our own will be Tuesday the 20th. This will be a lake float. We will be on Kintla Lake in Glacier Park. It will be an awe-inspiring outing. This Alpine Lake will have some amazing views and vistas.

The 21st we will either the Bull River, Middle-Fork of the Flathead, or the South-Fork of the Flathead. It is important to know far these other rivers are to make the best possible decision for the moment.

For example, The Bull River is 99 miles away and 200 round trips. The Middle-Fork is 216 miles round trip. The South-Fork is 320 miles round trip. So, who knows how we will be physically from the previous days fishing?

One needs to remember you are on vacation and the urge to do everything is a reel issue. So, one needs to write stuff out to categorize it. I simply make things into categories. The first category is what do I want to accomplish and how much harder would it be to accomplish this versus the others? How much time will it take to affectively accomplish said task? Do you have the time to complete the task?

At what sacrifice would it take to get everything you want done? Here is an example. It will take us 30 hours to drive to Eureka, Montana. We could drive 15 hours at a time. We have decided to make the trip out there in 2.5 days. This real and not being foolhardy. We will arrive in Eureka safely. We will be traveling Friday and arriving there sometime on Sunday.
You need to be reel with your self because no one wants to set themselves up for failure.

Monday, we hook up with a guide to float the Flathead River.

Tuesday, we will drive 225 miles one way to float and fish Kintla Lake.

Wednesday, we will float the Bull River and drive 99 miles one way.

Thursday, we will go to Glacier Park and drive the Road to the sun.

Friday, we will float and fish river to be determined.

Saturday, drive to Helena.

Sunday, we will float and fish the Big Mo.

Monday, we will float and fish the Big Hole.

Tuesday is a calamity day.

Wednesday, we will start the trek home!

I have used my Garmin 64sx and basecamp to calculate all the routes for floating. The last thing I want to do is blow the takeout! Ouch!

I have been in contact with several fly shops in the area that will shuttle our truck for us. The cost is between 27 – 57 dollars which is reasonable.

I have calculated all the costs for me and its at almost 4,000 dollars. This price tag is worth every penny. The memories that I will make and the rawness of seeing mother nature will be amazing. In all with driving out and back we will be gone for 14 days!

I hope you enjoyed the little story/fish travel thoughts.

Be well,
Sonder
 

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It’s refreshing to know that others share my tenacity on planning. Great plan you have formulated.
It’s easy to see that you love that part of the country, and I throughly understand why.
I once visited a friend in Clackamas Oregon, and within just a few weeks of returning home, sold everything that I no longer “ needed” and returned to Oregon and stayed 7 years.
Don’t try explaining it to anyone who has not personally experienced that part of America, they won’t understand.
Enjoy!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sounds like a good trip. Do you have Plan B's for each segment of the trip if something goes bassackwards?
Yes I have plans B and C lol! Like all things you need to roll with the punches. We will be ok as long as the Big Mo does not blow out ..lol.. if that does we got bigger problems than fishing!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
It’s refreshing to know that others share my tenacity on planning. Great plan you have formulated.
It’s easy to see that you love that part of the country, and I throughly understand why.
I once visited a friend in Clackamas Oregon, and within just a few weeks of returning home, sold everything that I no longer “ needed” and returned to Oregon and stayed 7 years.
Don’t try explaining it to anyone who has not personally experienced that part of America, they won’t understand.
Enjoy!!
Thank you. I first saw Northern Cali when I was in the Corps! I was only there for 6 months, but its what has been part of my soul ever since. I have never been to Oregon, but have spent time in Washington State! Beautiful.

Here is the Road to the Sun and this is what beckons my return!Video Road the Sun
 

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I've been going out there 2-3 times a year. Going to the sun road is nice. On my way back I'll always do the Beartooth Pass on my way to Billings and stop at east rosebud fly shop.
I almost never do the big rivers. This year will be different. I'll be spending 2 or 3 days in Yellowstone fishing those famous and crowded rivers. Mostly because there's a river in the area I've been wanting to fish it's headwaters, which is difficult to get to. That's the beauty.of the area, almost every stream in the Wyoming/Montana/Idaho area has decent trout fishing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have made a friend out there. He makes custom oars and floats 3 times a week lucky dog. He was just telling me that the spring runoff is three weeks behind. This will most likely mean better flows late season and potentially better fishing.
 

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I'll be out there the July 4 the weekend and for a week and a half in early August. Last year I made the run for a long memorial day weekend, but because of the runoff the river was still too high. Which made my 16 hour drive moot. So I ended up fishing the Clarks fork which is a fine river.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The river I've been trying to fish is the grey bull. Last time I stopped at Jack Creek and tried to head upstream. River was too high. Here's a pic of Jack Creek campground. View attachment 489101
Is this the bull your speaking of
48.1108141, -115.8161166
 

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Is this the bull your speaking of
48.1108141, -115.8161166
No. Wrong State. 😉 These days my trips out west generally are located in the Yellowstone ecosystem. More or less. Although I sometimes overnight stop in the bighorns for a break and some fishing. I just don't feel the need to keep hauling out that far anymore. I don't think the fishing is that much better. Though I will be making a trip to hunt down some.bull trout at some point.
If you're running along I-90, I suggest a roll through the badlands if you're willing to spare a few extra hours. It's well worth it. Visually stunning. Pics don't do it justice.
 

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I may have to rethink things. 😳 Massive flooding around Yellowstone. They got hit with a lot of rain, on top of that, up high some areas got 6' of new snow last week which is melting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Yea, that's why I have major rivers and small ditches all laid out for the trip. This is also why I have covered so much area for the trip planning also. I hear ya, and hey for me it's the adventure not the fishing. Lol at least I will get to take plenty of photos. There spring run off has finally started. Good luck
 

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It appears to not be too bad. A few roads are out of commission, some cleanup is in order. My plan was to fish the upper Yellowstone river around the lake, the Madison river and the Gallatin for a few days while I'm out that way. It looks completely doable by early August.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
It will be interesting to see how this pans out. I can't imagine it will all be 100% before fall, but we shall see. This will I'm sure cause other parts of the state to see a major influx of ppl n traffic.
 
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