Bighorn River trout fly fishing guides, fly shop and lodging in Fort Smith Montana.

Bighorn River Montana Fly Fishing Guides

Montana Fly Fishing Guide

Bighorn River Fly Fishing

The Bighorn River is considered by many to be the finest trout steam in the continental United States and one of the most productive brown trout fisheries in the world. This spectacular fishery was created in 1967 with the completion of Yellowtail Dam. From 1975 to 1981, fishing on the river was closed due to Indian disputes. Since its reopening the Bighorn has consistently offered superb fly fishing for large trout.

The Bighorn River's ecosystem has all the necessary ingredients to support an astounding number of brown and rainbow trout.

Because it is a tail-water fishery, the water temperature remains cool in the summer and ice free in the winter, allowing the trout an extended growing season. When other Montana rivers are high and muddy from spring runoff, the Bighorn remains clear and fishable. There is little scouring by spring runoff and this encourages weed growth and abundant aquatic life.

Because of the surrounding limestone geology, water chemistry is ideal to host huge populations of mayflies, midges, caddis and fresh- water crustaceans. This, along with the abundant spawning habitat, leads to optimal fish numbers and individual growth. Fish census statistics have revealed populations of up to 10,000 catchable-sized fish (over nine inches) per mile, with a large number of 16 to 19 inch fish.

Montana Fly Fihsing Guide for trout

Bighorn Fly Fishing Guides

The Bighorn Trout Shop's professional fly fishing guides are eager to show you our famous river and wild trout. Their years of experience help provide you with the expert instruction and service you expect.

Float fishing is the preferred way to fish the Bighorn as access to the river is limited. You will be fishing from fiberglass McKenzie drift boats that are quiet, comfortable and provide a stable platform from which to cast. The standard float will take you down 13 miles of the Bighorn River from the Afterbay Dam to Bighorn Fishing Access. Your guide will position the boat within easy casting distance of the finest holding water. As you fish your way down river you will stop frequently at the more productive holes and runs.  Midday you'll pull over to the bank and enjoy a relaxing streamside lunch; then, after a short nap if you wish, you'll continue fishing your way down one of the very finest trophy rivers in North America.

Montana Fly Fishing guide

Fort Smith Montana Fly Fishing Shop

Our full service Fort Smith fly shop can outfit you completely with high-quality equipment from company's like Sage, R.L. Winston, Patagonia, and Simms, just to name a few. Our fly section is the finest in the area and contains many specialized patterns that have proven effective over the years. We also offer rental rods, reels and waders for those who want to give fly fishing a try without making a large investment.

How to get here

The nearest airport is located in Billings, Montana Located 90 miles from fort smith, Billings is serviced by several major air carriers and rental car agencies. A paved runway is also available for private planes in fort smith.

Montana Fly Fishing Lodge

By road coming south on I-90, take exit 495 at Hardin to get on Highway 313. Coming north on I-90 from Sheridan, Wyoming, take exit 509 at Crow Agency for the cutoff to 313. Arrangements can also be made for shuttle service to and from Billings.

Catch & Release

Our shop advocates catch and release Bighorn River fly fishing.
A wild trout is too valuable to be enjoyed only once.

Note: The sale of alcohol on the Crow Indian Reservation is
prohibited, so you'll have to bring your own.

Bighorn River Fly Fishing Guide Rates:

Float Trip (2 anglers) - $495.00

Float Trip (1 angler) - $450.00

All Float Trips include boat, lunch, beverages and transportation to and from the river.

Bighorn River Lodging

Montana Fishing Lodge

Lodge rooms are spacious and comfortable, with private baths, TV, and air conditioning. Rooms include continental breakfast, and evening meal is served daily (cost extra).

All lodge rooms have 3 beds per room. The rooms are spacious and have private baths, TV and air conditioning. Rooms include continental breakfast. These are the finest accomodations in Fort Smith.

An evening meal is served daily. Reservations must be made in the morning. Prices range from $12.00 to $16.00 - all you can eat. Dessert is included. Or if you prefer, a restaurant is within easy walking distance.

Lodging (1 person) $120.00
Lodging (2 person) $145.00
Lodging (3 person) $160.00
Trout House (up to 6 people) $55.00 per person; $195 minimum/night
Angler's Roose (sleeps six people) $65.00 per person; $230.00 minimum/night

Deposit: Each float trip requires a $200 deposit per boat. Each room requires a $50 deposit per night. All deposits are due within 2 weeks of booking date. 10% of deposit will be forfeited if cancelled within 4 months of the scheduled trip. Book early in order to secure desired dates for Bighorn River fly fishing guides and lodging.

Pets require a deposit and prior approval. $5 a night per pet with a limit of 2, kennel required.

The Bighorn Trout Shop is owned and operated by Steve & J.J. Hilbers and Hale & Shelly Harrisbighorn trout 1


Stay and fly fish at the Bighorn Trout Shop. Contact us today.