Fly Fishing the Yellowstone River in Montana

With Sam Soholt, Big Mike and Dirty Pete

Montana is simply beautiful. Regardless of the time of year you may visit this incredible state you always seem to walk away telling yourself how amazing it truly is. We had the opportunity to float the Yellowstone River, a certifiable blue ribbon trout “stream” in the Paradise Valley region of Montana just outside the town of Livingston.

The back drop of the Absaroka Range creates the perfect setting for this amazing watershed that has drawn anglers from around the world to float this river.

We had the pleasure to team up with outdoor photographer and public land advocate, Sam Soholt on this float. Sam is a good dude.

Sam having some fun with our dredge set up…a streamer with a nymph dropper

He’s talented, funny, passionate about wild places and has made a living shooting for brands like YETI, Mystery Ranch and OnXmaps to name just a few. He may be known most notably for the cover shot he got of Joe Rogan on Peterson’s Hunting or the Blue Bird yellow school bus he purchased last year and converted into a mobile Public Land hunting rig.

Joe Rogan with his first moose – photo by Sam Soholt

The bus raises awareness about the ever changing landscape of our public lands and Sam also sells tee shirts donating $5.00 from each one back to organizations that help to keep public access in place. If you dig his shirt do yourself a favor and grab one at his website. Public Land Tees or go subscribe to his You Tube channel here.

The public land bus out on assignment during a hunt

Our two guides for the day went by the names of “Big Mike” and “Dirty Pete”. Mike was originally from New Orleans but moved west to guide fly fishing trips in Wyoming back in 1993 and then relocated to Bozeman in 2009. Pete has the nick name the makes you want to lean in and know more. He was filled with stories from the minute we met until we shook hands and walked away that evening. A native Montanan Pete spends his time skiing, fishing and building custom bikes. Both guys were a riot to be around and took good care of us on the float.

“Big Mike” looking over the big box – Photo by Sam Soholt


“Dirty Pete” showing us his custom bike builds after the float – Photo by Sam Soholt

The river was still pretty big flowing at roughly 13,000 cfs but we used a technique they called dredging that helps your flies get deeper into the big holes and keeps you fishing in the zone for longer periods of time.

Morning blast off – Photo by Sam Soholt

Check out the video and let us know what you think!

Casey dropping the “dredge” into place – Photo by Sam Soholt


A beautiful Yellowstone River brown trout – Photo by Sam Soholt

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Written by HUSH