On a 350 acre ranch just outside the town of Bozeman sits Gallatin River Lodge, a full-service fishing lodge situated within easy striking distance of the Yellowstone River, the Lower Gallatin, the Upper and Lower Madison, and numerous spring creeks and lakes (all less than an hour’s drive from the lodge).  As for “home waters,” a short walk across a meadow on the lodge’s property leads to two miles of private access on the Gallatin River, excellent water for both brown and rainbow trout. Your room at the lodge is the perfect place to return to after a long day on the water, and the exceptionally comfortable accommodations are matched nicely by the outstanding cuisine.  The Gallatin River Grill and Bar has rightfully earned its reputation of serving the best food in Bozeman, with a menu featuring a wide range of entrees and appetizers plus nightly specials to choose from.

Typical Length of Stay

The Gallatin River Lodge requires a three night minimum stay. The Standard package is a six day / seven night package, although trips of other length of stays can be arranged.

Accommodations and Lodging

Gallatin River Lodge AccommodationThe Lodge is located on a 350 acre ranch near the Gallatin River, 10 miles west of Bozeman, Montana. The cedar post-and-beam building offers spectacular views of five mountain ranges, and the landscape is beautiful and unspoiled. A large heron rookery is nearby, with eagles, osprey and sand hill cranes as neighbors. Whitetail deer, beaver, mink, muskrat, fox and pheasant inhabit this riparian area. The Lodge’s private trout pond is just outside the front door and the Gallatin River is simply a ten-minute walk across hay meadows.

All six suites at the Lodge feature elegant oak furniture and private baths with a large Jacuzzi tub and shower. A king or queen sized bed, Mission style couch, beautiful fir floors, Tiffany lamps, satellite TV and western artwork adorn each suite. Free high-speed wireless internet access is available. Large windows offer superb views of the mountains and river terrain. Air conditioning had recently been added to all of their rooms. A library, fly tying table and lounge area is open to guests on the second floor. The great room with a large stone fireplace faces the trout pond and the Spanish Peaks just south of the Lodge. A century old oak bar graces the dining room.

The Trout Cabin has four downstairs guest rooms with contemporary furnishings, king sized beds or two twin beds, private bathrooms with large walk-in showers and flat screen televisions. These rooms open onto covered patios with views of the pond. The upstairs two bedroom suite offers sleeping accommodations for up to six guests, two bathrooms, a wet bar, entertainment room and a private deck overlooking the pond, framing the Spanish Peaks mountains.

Food and Beverages

Creative Montana cuisine is featured by the chefs and served by the staff. The full service bar offers an extensive wine list. Homemade creations continue throughout the restaurant, innovative cocktails are designed from scratch. You will find a handpicked selection of Montana made micro brews, a full selection of premier liquors, and outstanding wines to accompany your meal. The wine list boasts unique selections from around the globe with more than 120 bottles to choose from. Each aspect of dinner at the lodge is made from in house ingredients; from the bread baked daily to Chef Craig's famous huckleberry ice cream. The culinary team works exceptionally hard to bring an array of Montana products to your table.

Fishing Information

Fish TalesGallatin River –The Gallatin River is just 10 minutes outside the door of the Lodge, just across the hay meadows. The Gallatin flows over 90 miles with hundreds of small creeks adding to its flow. It originates from springs in Yellowstone Park and flows to Three Forks, the birthplace of the Missouri River. The three sections of the Gallatin are the Meadow, Canyon and Valley. The Meadow stretch extends approximately 30 miles from Yellowstone Park to Big Sky. Riffles, runs, and pocket water characterize the Gallatin here. Rainbow, brown, cutthroat and cut-bow hybrids inhabit this area. The Canyon stretch extends about 25 miles through a narrow, shaded, rocky gorge. The classic river fishing scenes from "A River Runs Through It" were filmed in this section. Deeper runs, pools, and pocket water characterize this section. Browns, rainbows, and cut-bows are the predominant species here. The Valley section contains 35 miles of classic western freestone water. The Gallatin River Lodge is in this section. Offering excellent wading for browns and rainbows, the river here is braided through mostly private ranch property. Larger browns and rainbows can be found in this section. Access is more limited than the upper sections. The last 5 miles of the river can be accessed by boat but all other areas cannot be fished from watercraft. April and early May are excellent months to fish the Gallatin. Anglers fish stonefly, attractor nymphs and streamer patterns and also see consistent midge and baetis hatches during these months. By late-May, runoff begins and the Gallatin usually is not fishable until mid-June. Late June is salmon fly time on the Gallatin. July brings salmon flies, golden stones, caddis and PMD's. Attractor nymphs work well throughout the summer months. August and September are hopper, caddis and attractor dry months. October is one of the best months on the Gallatin and streamers and nymphs are quite productive.

East Gallatin – The East Gallatin runs north of town and eventually meets up with the Gallatin. Surrounded mostly by private farmland, access is limited and all fishing is done by wading. The East Gallatin is a smaller stream that holds good numbers of rainbows and browns and can be very productive. It’s a great alternative to fishing the Gallatin and is within 20 minutes of the Lodge.

Madison River – The Madison River is within 30 miles of the Lodge. It contains three sections as well: the Upper section in Yellowstone Park, the tailwater of Hebgen Dam and the tailwater of Ennis Dam. The Lodge will usually fish the section below Hebgen to Ennis most of the year and the lower river in winter, spring and fall. The upper river, although a tailwater, fishes more like a freestone river and has been described as the “50 Mile Riffle.” Brown and rainbow trout are the predominant species, and native whitefish and West Slope Cutthroat are also found here. Typically, anglers will float and wade fish the Upper Madison, as most areas of the river pass through private property over this stretch. April through mid-May means stonefly and attractor nymphs, while spring caddis and baetis hatches become more prolific beginning in mid-April. Late May the river can occasionally become unfishable due to runoff. Mid-June through August, the Madison offers one of the finest angling experiences in the world. The Madison’s famous salmon fly hatch begins in early July. A variety of hatches occur throughout the summer including numerous mayflies, stoneflies and caddis. Hoppers and various attractor patterns work well through early September. Terrestrials, streamer and nymph fishing in September and October often delivers some of the largest fish in the river. The lower Madison flows through the Bear trap Canyon to Three Forks and the Missouri River for 45 miles. It is a deep, fast river through the canyon stretch. Anglers can float and wade the area of the lower Bear trap to within a few miles of its joining the Jefferson at the confluence. This tailwater offers consistent hatches in the spring including prolific caddis, midge and baetis. Large browns and rainbows inhabit this area, along with a few cutthroats. Mid to late June offers prolific stonefly hatches and some super fishing. Fall streamer fishing for big browns and rainbows often produces some of the biggest fish of the season.

Yellowstone River – As the longest un dammed trout stream in North America, the Yellowstone provides over 300 miles of fishable trout water. It heads above Yellowstone Lake in the Bridger Teton country south of Yellowstone National Park and flows hundreds of miles to meet the Missouri River near North Dakota. Deep pools and runs characterize this great freestone river. Typically, lodge guests will float fish the river from Yellowstone Park down to Big Timber, a section of over 70 miles. Browns, rainbows, and cutthroat are the predominant species. The Yellowstone is open year-round to angling. Spring and fall months offer the most consistent hatches of stoneflies, caddis, midges and mayflies such as baetis, BWO and Sulphurs. Terrestrials and attractor fishing characterize summer angling. Drifting a large hopper pattern over good water often delivers some of the largest fish in the river. The Yellowstone fishes well in the fall and offers some of the most spectacular views of the Montana scenery. Streamer and nymph fishing can be productive throughout the fall and winter.

Paradise Valley Spring Creeks/Streams/Alpine Lakes – Many famous spring creeks are nearby: DePuy's, Nelson's, Armstrong's and the MZ ranch are all within 30 minutes of the Lodge. These spring creeks are on private property and require a rod fee. Many anglers find challenging, technical fishing on the creeks, and an experienced guide can really help with this type of fishing. Small streams, stillwaters and alpine lakes are nearby. The lodge can also make arrangements for horseback access trips to isolated alpine lakes and backcountry streams in the area. Guests may also travel to Yellowstone National Park, just an hour away, and fish the numerous streams, lakes and rivers. Finally, the private pond at Gallatin River Lodge (full of rainbow trout) offers a great angling treat for many guests. It also provides a great place to practice and is offered for casting instruction.

Boats and Equipment

Float fishing on area rivers is done via McKenzie-style drift boats designed for fly fishing. The Gallatin River Lodge can outfit you with any equipment you may need for your fly fishing trip, rentals or for purchase. Guests are welcome to ship their equipment directly to the lodge ahead of their arrival.

Non-Angling Activities and Options

Gallatin River Lodge BarWe are happy to assist you or your family in the organization of non-angling activities during your stay. Remember that we can customize any trip package! If you want to fish less and sight-see more, let us know. Whether it’s horseback riding, touring Yellowstone National Park, hunting, hiking, or exploring, give us a call to discuss your needs and desires.

Horseback riding trips into the backcountry to fish for native cutthroats can also be arranged.

How To Get There

The nearest commercial airport is Gallatin Field, located in Bozeman, Montana. Serviced by Delta, Northwest, United, Frontier, and Horizon Airlines, the airport is just 15 minutes from the Gallatin River Lodge.

Arrival and Departure Details / Times

You will be picked up by the manager of G.R.L. whenever your flight arrives and taken directly to G.R.L.

2013 Fishing Package Rates

All package prices are per person and includes meals. GRL does require a three night minimum stay. For additional days or other custom packages, please call Yellow Dog for details.

Length of Stay 2 Per Boat
2 Per Room
1 Per Boat
1 Per Room
Lodge Suite
4 Night / 3 Fishing Days $2,312.50 $2,712.50
7 Night / 6 Fishing Days $4,225.00 $4,925.00
Trout Cabin Rooms
4 Night / 3 Fishing Days $2,212.50 $2,512.50
7 Night / 6 Fishing Days $4,050.00 $4,575.00

** A 10% Discount is offered on packages of five (5) or more nights - not reflected in the above rates **

* Remember that Yellow Dog's services are completely free! When you book a trip with Yellow Dog, you never pay more than when you book directly with the lodge or outfitter.

What's Included

  • All Accommodations
  • Airport transportation
  • Meals will include a cooked to order breakfast, lunch prepared by the Gallatin River chef to take on your day trip with your guide, and dinner off of the Gallatin River Grill menu
  • Non-alcoholic beverages
  • Guide service will include full service guiding and transportation to and from the fishing areas
  • Fly fishing gear/tackle (if needed)

What's Not Included

  • Air transportation to and from Bozeman, Montana
  • Montana State Bed Tax - 7% on Lodging Only
  • Montana fishing license and flies
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Gratuities for guides and staff

Travel Arrangements

Yellow Dog has a full in-house travel and reservations system, and can assist with airline tickets, hotels, transfers, and all travel logistics for every destination that we offer. Contact us at 888-777-5060 or for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services and trip insurance.

Other Information

April – May: Springtime is probably the best-kept secret in Montana. All the rivers are fishing well and are generally low and clear. Spring run-off usually doesn’t begin until late May or early June, and you can expect a lot of streamer and nymph fishing with possibilities for early caddis and mayfly hatches. This is a great time to experience Montana as things begin to “green up.” You can expect some aggressive feeding from the fish.

June: This can be a transition month in Southwest Montana. While some years high water might be a problem, June can still offer tremendous fishing. In anticipation of the salmon fly hatch this is a good time to fish a lot of stone fly nymphs for big browns.

July: August: Lots of fun and sun. Late June and early July brings out the salmon flies on the Madison. July offers a lot of great caddis fishing and in August it’s time to start thinking big dry flies! The hopper fishing is tremendous and this is the time to fish big attractor patterns.

September: This is the local’s favorite time of year, and the fall in Montana is beautiful. You can still fish hoppers and big attractor patterns, and the fish are beginning to turn on to big, heavy streamer patterns. You can expect temperatures to be in the 70’s with the rivers low and clear.

October: Mid-November: If you like fishing streamers, you can expect a lot of action from aggressive fish during the fall months. The weather can be somewhat unpredictable, but the fish don’t seem to care. This is also a great time to do cast-and-blast combos (call Yellow Dog for more details)

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