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The Backstage Pass

7 Luxury Fly Fishing Lodges in Montana

May 03, 23

While Montana hosts some of the best freshwater operations in the world, there are several lodges Yellow Dog considers to offer just a little more in terms of accommodations, amenities, food, and service. These lodges provide both anglers and non-anglers with a luxury experience on all fronts. Bask in the evening glow of sun-kissed meadows after casting single dries to sipping trout, or lounge next to a crackling fire in the lodge's cedar-scented main room; each of these operations offers a distinguished experience. Whether you are looking to indulge yourself in total comfort after long days on the water or hoping to share some time away with a companion, Yellow Dog has you covered.

1. Complete Fly Fisher Lodge (Wise River, Montana)
The Complete Fly Fisher calls one of the most prolific and productive rivers in the American West home: The Big Hole River. Operational since 1968, The Complete Fly Fisher Lodge has delivered on its namesake for half a century: high-end accommodations, excellent service, and top-tier fishing.

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Guests can choose from personal cabins or opt for a lodge suite overlooking the Big Hole River. The private cabins are ideal for small families or fishing buddies looking for maximum comfort. The Lodge's airy, open floor plan and copious windows showcase the spirit of Montana, where no guest shall feel confined.

The chefs at The Complete Fly Fisher share an extensive culinary background and are graduates of the Culinary Institute of America. Speaking from first-hand experience, Yellow Dog feels these two chefs prepare some of the best cuisine found in any Western US lodge.

The Lodge was built in a prime location, with access to many of the area's most productive waters nearby. Choose from the Big Hole, Beaverhead, Jefferson, or Ruby River, depending on fishing conditions and your angling needs.

Whether you are a dry-or-die angler or a streamer-junkie, the guides at The Complete Fly Fisher know when and where to be to make the most of your luxury trip.

2. Gallatin River Lodge (Bozeman, Montana)
Located nearby our Yellow Dog headquarters, the Gallatin River Lodge sits on a 350-acre ranch not far from its home water, The Gallatin. Many consider the lodge the finest hotel accommodations within the Bozeman area, so the lodge is perfectly suited for committed anglers, couples and families, and corporate retreats.

Elegant oak furniture, king or queen-sized beds, and Jacuzzi tubs are just a few of the amenities that make the lodge suites at Gallatin River Lodge a cut above the rest. Designed to accommodate both anglers and non-anglers, rest assured that your comfort is the lodge's top priority.

The culinary team at Gallatin River Lodge utilizes local proteins and ingredients whenever possible. Locally raised beef, lamb, elk, or rainbow trout are staples on the menu while sourcing vegetables and herbs from nearby farms or their onsite garden. Impeccable fair, a fully-stocked bar, and excellent service combine for a truly wonderful dining experience.

Anglers have innumerable options during their stay, from targetting cutthroat on the Yellowstone, to large brown trout a short walk from the Lodge's front door. Float the Madison or Gallatin, or target one of the many famous spring creeks nearby!

Interested in horseback riding in Yellowstone National Park? Yellow Dog can customize any itinerary for both anglers and non-anglers. Given the abundance of opportunities for non-anglers, this location is one of our favorite family-friendly lodges.


3. Madison Valley Ranch (Ennis, Montana)
A fly fisher's playground! Big Sky Country is home to some of the finest and most productive trout waters in the United States, and Madison Valley Ranch calls "Big Sky" home. An incredible location and a beautiful lodge, Yellow Dog consider this one of the nicest and best-run operations in all of Montana!

Each room at the Ranch has comfortable double and queen-sized beds, a covered porch, and a stunning view of the Montana sky. Or, choose a suite in the Channels Lodge nearby, each with an additional bedroom and sitting room.

Whether opting for a room within the Main Lodge, or a more private experience at the Channels Lodge, the amenities at Madison Valley Ranch promise a comfortable and restful experience. Furthermore, an abundance of gathering areas makes the Ranch a fantastic choice for large groups or corporate gatherings--from outdoor hot tubs to a fully furnished conference room.

The cuisine at Madison Valley Ranch could compete with any lodge out there. Refined but approachable, dinners at the Ranch consist of four courses, all paired with wine and craft beer. Consistently some of the best meals we have in the entire state!

Located on a world-famous section of the Madison River, the "Channels" is regarded as a superb dry fly fishery. In addition, guests have access to a fantastic creek and pond fishing right on the property. The Big Hole, Beaverhead, and Yellowstone are all nearby, offering guests a diversity in both fishing and scenery.

4. Madison Double R (Ennis, Montana)
Yellow Dog considers Madison Double R the ultimate fly fishing lodge experience: no detail is overlooked, from the fishing to the cuisine. Private accommodations, superb cuisine, and immediate access to the famed Madison River.

Choose from a number of private cabin offerings depending on your wants, needs, and party size. All cabins provide stunning views, top-class amenities, and easy access to the "Back Eddy Saloon," an authentic 1800s western bar meant for relaxation after fishing or enjoying a drink with old friends.

The chefs at Madison Double R are redefining "lodge food." Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all thoughtfully prepared with local ingredients, complete with wine pairings each evening.

Madison Double R focuses on float trips of their fabled home waters and access to the lower Big Hole, Jefferson, and Ruby River. Teach your spouse, child, or friend how to cast at the stocked pond or horseback up to nearby mountain lakes and streams. The options at the Lodge cater to every type of angler!

5. Ruby Springs Lodge (Sheridan, Montana)
A private and intimate lodging experience in "God's Country," Ruby Springs Lodge has a reputation as one of the most exceptional lodges in the Western United States. Magnificent cabins and a low-pressure fishery make this one of our favorites at Yellow Dog!

The Lodge is refined but approachable, outfitted with leather sofas, a full complimentary bar, and a grand rock fireplace. In addition, an onsite fly shop or fly tying bench can help your fly box in a pinch.

Five private riverside cabins offer a distinguished view of "The Ruby," a true gem in Montana fishing. All cabins feature a master bedroom, heated tile floors, and a river rock fireplace. Two of the cabins are larger and can accommodate small families or a larger group of fishing buddies.

A la carte dining at Ruby River Lodge is exceptional, with a range of inspiring choices. Breakfast and dinner are served at the lodge, where guests will generally dine together, making for treasured memories and lifelong friendships.

One of the finest group of guides anywhere in Montana, Ruby River Lodge has unprecedented access to much of Montana's best fisheries. A prized small stream, the Ruby River offers anglers a wealth of fishing opportunities in a truly remote setting.

In addition, anglers have access to float trips on the Big Hole, Beaverhead, Madison, and Jefferson. Easy access to private water means anglers can tailor their trip itinerary to any and every angling scenario.

6. The Lodge at Eagle Rock (Cascade, Montana)
Newly renovated, the Lodge at Eagle Rock can be defined in two words: "Rustic elegance." Thoughtfully constructed, the former historic inn was revamped to provide anglers and lodge guests with a personalized experience and downright remarkable ambiance.

This is one of Yellow Dog's favorite locations for large gatherings or groups looking for an all-inclusive, luxury fly fishing experience. Each detail was hand-selected to be both inviting and impressive, all complimented by impeccable service.

The rooms are comfortable, spacious, and contain two full beds, while the main room and full bar are the ideal locations to relax, converse, and plan the next day's fishing beats. A small business center underlines how Lodge at Eagle Rock could also be the perfect location for a business retreat.

Four-course dinners incorporating local Montanan meats and produce are thoughtfully paired by a classically-trained chef. Made-to-order breakfasts each morning start the day off right, with creative sandwiches, homemade pastries, salads, and fresh fruit providing a delightful streamside lunch.

The tailwaters beneath Holter Dam are a prolific fishery--incredible hatches, trophy trout, and one of the highest fish-per-mile counts in the American West. This portion of the Missouri River promises cool water temperatures year-round and as such, consistent fishing throughout the seasons.

A truly special place, anglers can also take a jet-boat ride to "the land of the giants," where only a few outfitters have access to some serious trophy water!

7. Silver Bow Club (Divide, Montana)
The 15,000-square-foot lodge at Silver Bow Club sits on an expansive 1,800-acre plot. Breathtaking, cozy, and pure Montana, this is fly fishing travel in style. With a number of non-angling activities available onsite, this is a fantastic option for anglers with non-angling companions.

The main lodge at Silver Bow Club champions off the water experiences, from the massive fireplace, billiards room, campfire, and outdoor hot tub, this location is fantastic for relaxing after a day on the water. Silver Bow Club is an ideal destination for families, catering to single anglers and large groups.

The bedrooms at Silver Bow Club are private, roomy, and welcoming. Each suite is personalized, offers its own Western ambiance, and allows guests to choose based on their preference and availability.

The chef at Silver Bow Club prepares a continental breakfast each morning and a delicious four-course dinner each night. Guests can choose from a few different options at dinner, and all alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages are included in your package!

In conjunction with nearby outfitter Sunrise Fly Shop, Silver Bow Club anglers are in the middle of Montana's best fisheries: the Big Hole, Beaverhead, and Jefferson. Whether you're looking for blizzard hatches or unpressured water, anglers can customize their fly fishing adventure to fit their needs at Silver Bow Club.

In summary, luxury lodge operations exist for the angler and non-angler looking to indulge in an experience beyond the famed fishing of Montana. Sleep in comfort, dine at the highest level, fish long and hard, and enjoy amenities and service at some of the finest lodge operations in the United States. Each of these destinations offers their unique approach to luxury fly fishing lodges, but all aspire to set a standard beyond excellence. Give us a call at Yellow Dog to discuss which program works best for you!

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