The Missouri river is dropping after two months of very high water. At its peak this Spring it got up to 20,300 cfs, it is running today at a little under 11, 000 cfs. The fishing is improving as it drops. There are the start of Pale Morning Duns starting to hatch, along with caddis. On the edges of the river you can find trout slashing at both PMDs and Caddis, even when the water is off-color, and dirty. The Dearborn river on some days is producing some dark mud , and the entire lower river is pretty muddy, on other days, it runs at a very light tan color and the entire river is clear.
Hard to say where the most productive stretch of river these days, the best hatches appear to be in the canyon, but, that is where the majority of boats are as well. It gets crowded in the canyon with all the out of area guides still around waiting for their rivers to clear and lower. Most of the boats fishing from the Dam to Pelican PT are fishing heavy and deep, you can fish crayfish patterns, PMD nymphs, caddis nymphs, sow bugs, and of course scuds. I have found that if you are the 30th boat through, you are not going to have the great fishing the first 10 boats are going to have in the Canyon.
With the river coming down , that means, dry-fly fishing, if you have an angler that can cast, it would be better to try some dry Caddis, with a dropper, or for that matter, any fly that will float with a dropper, fish along the banks, the fish are looking to feed on top. If you are not an accurate caster, you might do better fishing deep. There are alot of snags along the banks right now, so one needs to be able to cast to a specific spot to have good success with the Dry dropper.
When the weather is cooperative, we are going to be seeing the best fishing of the season for the next month. PMDs , Caddis, and, Tricos are not that far off, I have not seen any Baetis for the last three weeks, but, they could make a small comeback as well. Now, if all the out of area guides went home, life would be perfect, but I think we all know that life is not perfect. Just glad to see some fish looking up and eating, no matter how crowded it gets.