Fishing

Surrounding the western boundaries of Yellowstone National Park are some of the country’s top trout streams: the Madison River, Gallatin River, Yellowstone River, and the Henrys Fork of the Snake River. The Gallatin River, one of Montana's most magnificent, offers blue-ribbon rainbow, Yellowstone cutthroat, and brown trout streams.

West Yellowstone earned the title of America’s “Top Ten Fishing Towns” (Forbes Magazine) for unparalleled year-round fishing. Top blue-ribbon trout streams surround West Yellowstone: the Madison, Gallatin, Yellowstone and the Henrys Fork of the Snake. The upper Madison, the Firehole, and the Gibbon Rivers are just minutes away in Yellowstone. Unbeatable float and deep-water fishing abound on Hebgen Lake and Earthquake Lake, Henrys Lake and Island Park Reservoir.  In winter, Hebgen Lake features ice fishing including NAIFC and regional ice fishing tournaments and events.

Most waters in Yellowstone Park are open for fishing from the third weekend in May through the first Sunday in November, between the hours of 5am and 10pm. A valid Yellowstone National Parkfishing license is required for all anglers 16 years of age and older ($18 three-day permit, a $25 seven-day permit or a $40 season permit).  Licenses are available at local fly shops or Yellowstone Park Visitor Centers or ranger stations.

Make sure to obtain a regulations book as it contains specific information about restrictions, as well as maps and locations.  Regulations are often complex concerning fishing seasons, temporary and/or permanent area closures, tackle restrictions, and species specific number and size limits.

Outside of Yellowstone Park, Montana fishing licenses for non-residents are $25.00 for 2 days, $53.50 for 10 days, and $70.00 for the season. (Cost includes the required conservation license). Licenses are available at numerous locations in West Yellowstone.

In winter, Hebgen Lake features ice fishing including a North American Ice Fishing Circuit (NAIFC) qualifier and regional ice fishing tournaments and events. The annual NAIFC tournament is held the first weekend in February is winter's equivalent of summer's big time bass and walleye tournaments, is filled with seminars, a kid's free ice fishing clinic (with free rod & reel for every child),  and the fishing competition itself. More information is available at www.westyellowstoneicefishing.com

Don’t miss the fly-tying action, news, equipment and guide service available in our fly-fishing shops. And don't miss the September fishing phenomenon of "gulper fishing!" Read more!

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