Ruby Springs Lodge has a well-earned reputation for being one of the best-run, most exceptional fishing lodges in the entire Western United States. High-end and incredibly nice in every detail, this operation consists of two main lodge buildings and a number of private cabins built directly on the banks of Southwest Montana’s Ruby River. The cabins are truly magnificent and the amenities and setting will satisfy even the most discriminating guests. The numerous meandering miles of the Ruby River and Clear Creek - the lodge's "home waters" - provide guests access to a private and intimate fishery that is unpressured and loaded with fish. Fish the lodge's home waters and then spend a day or two floating a few of Montana's famed rivers, all located within a close and easy drive from the Lodge. A Ruby River fly fishing experience should be on every trout angler's fly fishing bucket list.
LOCATION: Alder, Montana
SEASON: May through October
CAPACITY: Maximum of 16 guests
CLOSEST MAJOR AIR HUB: Bozeman, Montana (BZN)
TARGET SPECIES: Rainbow, brown and cutthroat trout
DOCUMENTS REQUIRED: Valid ID for air travel and Montana fishing license
CONTACT US FOR MORE INFO 888-777-5060 INTL 01-1-406-585-8667 info [at] yellowdogflyfishing [dot] com
The main lodge consists of two main buildings that are adjacent to the private cabins built along the Ruby River. The River House is the social center of the Lodge, and the place for post-fishing cocktails, after-dinner relaxing, and evening poker. There is also a private, screened-in dining room for small groups that desire seclusion. The River House is well-appointed with a full complimentary bar, large flat screen TV, poker table, fly tying bench, and sitting area with a grand rock fireplace. The adjacent building houses the main dining room and fly shop. The dining area consists of three main tables, a large wine selection and views of the large lawn that cascades to the Ruby River below. The fly shop and front desk area is stocked with clothing, tackle, flies and Montana gifts. This is where you may find staff to arrange for non-angling activities or a massage.
There are five riverside cabins, each with a river rock fireplace, oversized tub and shower, heated tile floors, screened porch, fully-stocked refrigerator, Wi-Fi access, and your choice of king or two twin beds.
Tobacco Root Cabin
For guests who prefer more room, this riverside cabin features a master bedroom with your choice of king or two twin beds, two full baths, a living room, an outdoor shower overlooking the Ruby, a river rock fireplace, wet bar, Wi-Fi access and screened porch.
Measuring 1,500 square feet, this is the lodge’s largest cabin that can comfortably accommodate four guests. The cabin also has a living room, river rock fireplace, plasma TV, full wet bar, Wi-Fi access and an outdoor fireplace built on the banks of the Ruby River.
Food and Beverages
Each morning, you'll be awakened at whatever time you choose with a knock on your cabin door and a delivery of coffee, tea and juice. The breakfast menu offers classics like eggs benedict and steel-cut oatmeal, as well as unique Lodge specialties. Lunch is served streamside by your guide, with house-made soups, hearty sandwiches, salads and a cooler full of drinks. Your evening dining experience at Ruby Springs begins with cocktails in the River Room, where you can enjoy a full bar while watching trout rise in the Lodge’s home pool. The dinner menu will tempt you with a range of inspired choices, from fresh fish and vegetarian dishes, to steaks and chops — many of which feature local and organic ingredients. In the evenings, guests typically dine together, sharing stories and getting to know each other over wines specially paired with the menu.
Typical Length of Stay
Trips and packages of any length can be arranged and all trips are completely customized. Call Yellow Dog for details.
Non-Angling Activities and Options
For those who don't want to fish during their entire stay at Ruby Springs, there are numerous non-angling activities available. Guided horseback rides into the pristine Ruby Mountains or golf at the Jack Nicklaus-designed Old Works Golf Course in Anaconda, Montana are wonderful options. Naturalist-guided hiking trips can be arranged on miles of wilderness trails and there are sightseeing and photography trips to historic Virginia City, the Big Hole Battlefield, or Montana’s first territorial capital, Bannack.
Internet / Communications
Wi-Fi is available free of charge and cell phones will work in this part of Montana.
The numerous meandering miles of the Ruby River and Clear Creek – the Lodge's "home waters" – give guests access to a private and intimate fishery that is unpressured and loaded with fish. Fish the Lodge's home waters and then spend a day or two floating a few of Montana's most famous rivers: all a close and easy drive from the Lodge. The Ruby Springs guide staff are all full-time, salaried guides, and together encompass one of the finest crews found anywhere in Montana.
The Lodge has access to over ten miles of private water on the Ruby River, a fishery that is hands down one of Montana's finest small streams. Downstream from the Lodge is the private Anderson Ranch, which boasts 2,200 fish per mile and the highest population on the entire Ruby. The section is very popular with anglers of all levels and is typically a dry fly angler's paradise. Upstream you’ll find the "home water" of the Lodge, which runs directly past the cabins. Most days it is possible to catch a rising fish from your private deck.
Big Hole River
This is one of Yellow Dog's favorite Western rivers. Towering cliffs, quiet meadow stretches, wildlife, and lots of feisty trout make for both productive fishing and incredible scenic views Probably the most exciting dry fly fishing for trout anywhere is found on this river in June and early July with the emergence of the giant stoneflies (salmon flies). Streamer fishing in both the spring and fall can be excellent as well.
The stats speak for themselves: average fish size is 16 inches, 3,800 fish per mile, and one fish of four pounds (or better) every 20 feet of bank. The Beaverhead is the best trophy trout river in the region—and possibly beyond. It's surprisingly small, but deep, fast, and full of big fish. Small nymphs always work well on this river, catching amazingly big fish. June and July can provide good dry fly fishing with caddis, Yellow Sallies, and pale morning duns, as well as the famous crane fly during early August mornings. The streamer fishing in the fall can be outstanding.
The Madison is the most consistently productive river in the area. There are great hatches of salmonflies, caddis, and mayflies, and it’s not uncommon to catch fish on dries, nymphs and streamers all in the same day. It's a gorgeous river, full of rainbows and browns. Being just 30 minutes from the Lodge, it's one of Ruby Springs’ most popular fisheries.
During the spring and fall, this “sleeper” river can produce some wonderful fishing, not to mention solitude, wildlife and beauty. The streamer fishing can be red hot, and there’s solid dry fly fishing at certain times of year. It may not get much press, but the Jeff is a local’s favorite, mainly due to the size of the browns that lurk beneath its surface.
If you'd like to fish one of a variety of nearby private waters, such as Clear Creek or other small streams, the Lodge can easily arrange this. There are also two spring-fed ponds on the lodge grounds for casting practice or instruction.
Boats and Equipment
Float fishing on area rivers is done via McKenzie-style drift boats and skiffs designed for fly fishing. The Lodge has a fully-stocked fly shop, and plenty of rental and demo gear available, including rods, reels, waders and boots
How To Get There
The nearest commercial airport is Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport (BZN), located in Bozeman, Montana. Serviced by Delta, Northwest, United, Frontier and Horizon Airlines, the airport is approximately 1.5 hours from Ruby Springs Lodge and the town of Alder.
Arrival and Departure Details / Times
If you would like to drive directly to Alder on your own or rent a car in Bozeman, a map will be sent to you prior to your departure. A pre-arranged shuttle service between Bozeman and Ruby Springs Lodge is also available for an additional charge. Please contact Yellow Dog for details.
Montana fishing licenses are available at all area fly shops and sporting goods stores, or online by visiting the following website: Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks. You will need to present a valid driver's license in order to purchase your fishing license.
Yellow Dog offers 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 travel [at] yellowdogflyfishing [dot] com for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services and trip insurance.
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. All prices listed below are per person, based on double occupancy, and quoted in US dollars. Trips of any length of stay can be arranged, so please call Yellow Dog for details and custom package pricing.
3 Nights / 2 Days Fishing = $3,000.00
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing = $4,000.00
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing = $5,000.00
6 Nights / 5 Days Fishing = $6,000.00
7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing = $7,000.00
Tobacco Root Cabin
3 Nights / 2 Days Fishing = $3,150.00
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing = $4,200.00
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing = $5,250.00
6 Nights / 5 Days Fishing = $6,300.00
7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing = $7,350.00
3 Nights / 2 Days Fishing = $3,300.00
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing = $4,400.00
5 Nights / 4 Days Fishing = $5,500.00
6 Nights / 5 Days Fishing = $6,600.00
7 Nights / 6 Days Fishing = $7,700.00
Add an additional $100 per person per day for single occupancy.
- All lodging
- All meals
- Guided fishing
- Rod fees for over five miles of private access fishing on the Ruby
- Rods/reels, waders, and flies
- Fully-stocked bar
What's Not Included
- Airport transportation
- Gratuities for lodge staff and guides
- Montana fishing licenses
- Massages, horseback rides, and other activities (additional charge)
THE FISHING MONTHS
• Pre-Snowmelt = good water conditions
• Mothers Day Caddis
• Skwala Stoneflies
• Great streamer month
• Cool to warm temperatures - no mosquitoes
• Uncrowded water
• Post-snowmelt, higher water but very fishable
• Great fishing all month
• Salmonflies on the Big Hole and Madison
• PMD's on the Beaverhead
• A great month to fish ANYWHERE
• Daily air temps can be in the 90's or it could snow
• Stable water flows - warmer temps
• Golden Stoneflies on the Big Hole
• Good early terrestrial action on the Jefferson
• Freestone streams start to drop and clear
• You probably won’t need your waders
• Terrestrial time
• Hoppers and summer stonefly action
• Trico mayflies and Spruce moths on the Big Hole
• Probably our most stable dry fly month
• You won’t need waders, but you will use a bag of ice a day in your cooler
• Hoppers and beetles are still good producers
• Trico mayflies until the first couple frosts
• Water flows start to increase with cooler weather
• Brown Trout are in pre-spawn mode and HUNGRY
• It’s time to make sure your waders and raincoat are in the gear bag
• Our favorite month - hands down
• Great streamer and nymphing action on the Big Hole and Jefferson
• You remember that your truck has a heater in the mornings
• Crowds wane as most of the tourists head home
• Unparalleled scenery throughout SW Montana
"I almost started to cry when I entered our private cabin, because it was our first trips away from our kids in 7 years and the room was perfect! My husband and I enjoyed the meals and the setting, and the staff was more than accommodating. My husband caught his first trout of the trip on a dry fly from the deck of our cabin as I soaked in the oversized tub and watched him land the fish. We fished together around the lodge and caught numerous fat and healthy browns, all on dry flies! This was an overdue vacation and Ruby Springs Lodge exceeded our expectations."
- Karen D. (Bozeman, MT)