Madison Valley Ranch-The 2015 ORVIS Endorsed Fly Fishing Lodge of the Year!
At the Madison Valley Ranch, situated on the banks of the Madison River near Ennis, Montana, their backyard is a fly fisherman’s playground. Big Sky Country views inspire, and the daily activity of wildlife takes you back to a different time. You can escape from the hectic pace of everyday life and indulge in a luxury adventure where all the details are taken care of by their welcoming and attentive staff.
Daily float or wade trips on the Madison and surrounding rivers with experienced, professional, Orvis-endorsed guides keep experts challenged while providing guidance, enthusiasm, and patience to novices. The location in the heart of SW Montana offers anglers unparalleled access to wild trout on renowned blue ribbon rivers. At the Madison Valley Ranch, you are just a cast away from your finest fly fishing experience ever!
Contact Front Range Anglers Adventure Travel Manager Lisa McLaughlin for additional information and to BOOK!
Montana Reopening Plan
Montana is officially reopen effective June 1, 2020
The Fall is a great time of the year to fish the upper Madison River. Typically this is the beginning of the fall season here in southwest Montana. The weather depends on the particular year and can be quite variable. Some years its t-shirt weather, others can see our first hint of snow. Regardless, the river is in excellent condition this time of the year and the fish respond well to the shorter days and cooling water temperature.
Fall is when some of the world’s most experienced anglers choose to visit the upper Madison for a chance at a big brown trout as they enter their spawn. Aggressive browns are best targeted with a medium to large size sculpin streamers. Fish in the 18-20″ range are common with the right fly presentation and larger fish in the 21-23″ range are a definite possibility. A longer fish is considered a trophy on the Madison River and we see several caught each fall.
If the fish aren’t chasing the streamers then a nymph rig is usually the answer. Stonefly, caddis and mayfly nymphs in the size #6-18 range are suitable. The most common nymph rig is a 7.5′ 3X leader with an indicator down to 8″ of 3X tippet and 18″ of 4X between two nymphs. Due to the swift flows of the Madison, some split shot above the tippet is key to getting it down quickly to the fish.
If we are experiencing a long summer, hoppers and ants could still be an option in The Fall. If it’s a little cooler and cloudy, we tend to see some good small Baetis hatches this time of the year as well. A #18-20 mayfly pattern is best fished in the slowest water possible where you will hopefully find an active pod of fish sipping adults off the surface.
Equipment wise, a 5 or 6 weight rod with a floating line will suffice in most situations. A stout 7 weight and a sink tip line could also be helpful for casting big streamer patterns. Leader and tippet size will vary depending on the technique you are using. 5X should suffice for small dry flies, 2-4X is great for nymph rigs and 0-2X for streamers.
Clothing is perhaps the most important thing to effectively fish in The Fall. Given the variance in weather patterns, you should be prepared for just about anything. Layering up in the morning is the best way to approach the day. If it warms up later in the day you can dress down to just a fishing shirt and lightweight pants. If cooler weather is forecasted you’ll want an insulated soft shell and a waterproof wading jacket in the event of precipitation. Waders are preferred here in the fall but are not a necessity if you decide to fish from the boat the entire day. Even if you don’t wade the river, waders are a great way to keep warm and dry. The Madison is considered a difficult wade river. Felt soles have proven to be the best solution for traction on the slippery rocks. Lots of anglers wear rubber soles though. Madison Valley Ranch provides ORVIS boot-foot waders free of charge if needed. Additionally, gloves, a beanie and warm socks are never a bad idea to pack. Other than that, sunscreen, a hat, and polarized sunglasses are a must! You won’t need any bug spray.
Your Stay at the Lodge
Main Lodge Rooms
Connected to the main lodge, these four rooms each have private entrances, bathrooms, and porches. The bed configurations range from rooms with a queen and double bed, to a queen and a single bed.
The two Duplex Suites are located in a private cabin. In addition to having outdoor entrances, bathrooms, and porches, each suite has a back bedroom and a front sitting room with a wet bar and table for lounging, organizing flies, or just spreading out your gear. In the back room there are two queen beds. In the front room, two couches can transform into twin beds (great for kids!). These suites are significantly larger (50% more room) than the Main Lodge rooms. It’s also a treat to be the shortest distance to the Ranch’s serene outdoor hot tub and the trout-filled Jurassic Pond.
Lower Channels Lodge Rooms
The Lower Channels Lodge Rooms were completed in 2007 and have more square footage than the Main Lodge rooms. In addition to having private entrances, bathrooms, and porches, these four rooms each have two queen beds, are closest to the world-famous Madison River, and offer additional privacy and superb wildlife viewing. One of the rooms offers a handicap accessible bathroom.
Upper Channels Lodge Rooms
Treat yourself to spectacular views of the Channels section of the Madison River, Ennis Lake, and the surrounding mountain ranges. Designed to maximize the views and be luxuriously comfortable during an extended stay, these spacious rooms are available on a limited basis. Each room has two queen beds. The Upper Channels Lodge Rooms give a perspective you won’t want to miss!
How To Get There
Driving: Guests can drive directly to the Ranch. You may drive your own car or rent one in Bozeman. Maps will be sent prior to your departure.
Nearest Commercial Airport: Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport at Gallatin Field (BZN), serviced by Delta, Alaska/Horizon, United, American Airlines, Frontier, and Allegiant. The airport is approximately one hour from the Ranch.
Ennis/Big Sky airport can accommodate private jets. We would be happy to arrange transportation to and from this airport, which is just 15 minutes from the lodge.
Airport Shuttle: $240.00 round trip for the first two people; each additional guest is $20.00; each stop is $20.
Terms and Cost
2020 DATES AVAILABLE!! CONTACT OUR ADVENTURE TRAVEL TEAM FOR AVAILABLE DATES!
3 Nights Lodging with 2 Days Guided Fishing
Main Lodge Rooms $2325/angler
Duplex Suite $2415/angler
Lower Channels Lodge Room $2475/angler
Upper Channels Lodge Room $2550/angler
4 Nights Lodging with 3 Days Guided Fishing
Main Lodge Rooms $3200/angler
Duplex Suite $3320/angler
Lower Channels Lodge Room $3400/angler
Upper Channels Lodge Room $3500/angler
5 Nights Lodging with 4 Days Guided Fishing
Main Lodge Rooms $3975/angler
Duplex Suite $4025/angler
Lower Channels Lodge Room $4125/angler
Upper Channels Lodge Room $4250/angler
6 Nights Lodging with 5 Days Guided Fishing
Main Lodge Rooms $4800/angler
Duplex Suite $4830/angler
Lower Channels Lodge Room $4950/angler
Upper Channels Lodge Room $5100/angler
****All packages are based on double occupancy & shared guide. An additional charge will be applicable for single anglers. Please call for details****
Included: Lodging & guided fishing, a gourmet breakfast buffet, streamside lunch and 4-course, single seating dinner, Non-alcoholic beverages, beer & wine, Use of MVR facilities, including access to a private 2-acre trout pond, Jack Creek and private river access, MVR Staff gratuity
Not Included: Transportation to the lodge, hard alcohol, MT lodging tax (~$13/person a night), gratuity for guides, and MT fishing license.
Montana lodging tax ($14/person/night), transportation to and from the lodge, store purchases, guide gratuities, Montana non-resident fishing license ($53 for a 2-day license, $78 for a 4-day license), or retail purchases. Please do not hesitate to ask for further information regarding the exclusions.
At the time of booking 50% of the trip is due and payable. At 90 days the remainder plus all VAT and taxes are due. Cancellation greater than 90 days from the date of trip, all monies refunded less $100 fee if a replacement angler is found. Cancellation within 90 Days, no refunds are provided unless a qualified replacement angler is provided. No refunds are provided for trip cancellation due to Weather, Acts of God, Airline/Travel issues.
Trip Insurance is strongly advised & recommended!
Madison Valley Ranch COVID-19 Policies and Procedures
Any COVID related cancellations made up to 30 days prior to arrival, are fully refundable less a $200 processing fee per person. For cancellations made within 30 days and up to 10 days of arrival, guests will be offered the choice between a 100% credit valid for a later date in 2020, or, a 50% credit valid for 2021. Due to our inability to rebook rooms and guides at short notice, any cancellations within 10 days of arrival will be offered a 50% credit valid for a later date in 2020, or, a 25% credit valid for 2021. Remaining balance payments are still due 30 days prior to arrival.