Big Hole River

Jackson, Montana 59736

Big Hole River

Big Hole River Professional Review and Guide

"Amber waters flowing over cobbled bottoms and through scenic valleys create on of Montana's most famous fishing rivers. Few Montana rivers have as many enthusiastic devotees as the Big Hole. This delightful river has a cult of followers that make Reverend Moon’s disciples look downright apathetic.

While it doesn’t have many rapids, the river braids and winds and has some troublesome logjams and fallen trees. It’s a little too much for beginner canoeists or rafters. Fishing remains good, particularly for brown trout. The lower part of the river is an excellent spot to see mink and river otters."

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Trail Information

Nearby City
156 miles
Easy to Moderate
Skill Level
Class I-III
Fences, sharp bends, and overhanging branches in the upper river. Logjams and numerous channels in the last 25 miles of the lower river. Dangerous diversions at Divide and Pennington.
Try fishing in late March or April—before runoff—to avoid crowds. Try birding from a raft or canoe between Wisdom and Wise River during spring migration.
Fishing, Camping, Birding
Additional Use
FWP, Bozeman; Four Rivers Fishing Company, Twin Bridges; Montana Fly Company, Melrose, (406) 832-3252; Big Hole Lodge, Wise River.
Local Contacts
BLM #23 (Wisdom), #24 (Salmon), #33 (Butte South), #34 (Dillon).
Local Maps