As a new employee of Explore Rentals, I recently had the pleasure of embarking on my first day hike and fishing trip along the banks of the lower Madison. With a chilly wind blowing April snow on the peaks around us, I followed Sam several miles upriver until we found water we deemed profitable for fish. After reteaching myself knots long forgotten, I was geared up for what I hoped to be a day of successful nymphing. The valley we hiked into thankfully provided a respite from the icy wind, allowing for effortless placement and long arching roll casts. Our hopes for strikes were soon bolstered and our fears of being skunked soon alleviated as we made our way upriver into deeper, more technical water. The hours seemed to come to a standstill as we began pulling in fish with blue wing olive on the dry, and crawfish coupled with gold bead head nymph droppers.
With an afternoon of prosperous fishing behind us, I decided to try my luck with a few more casts into a deep, slow moving stretch of water. Much to my delight, these casts proved to be the most rewarding, seeing my indicator disappear almost instantly as I hooked into what seemed to be the fish of the day. The ensuing battle was brief and exciting, but I knew that this indeed was the one I had been searching for. With expertise netting by Sam, I soon found myself all smiles as I posed for my first Montana fishing picture, an eighteen-inch rainbow stretched out in my hands.