Posted: Sep 3, 2013 4:09 PM by MTN News
Officials say the Jefferson River will reopen to fishing on Wednesday, Sept. 4 thanks to improving flows and cooler temperatures.
The entire river had been closed to fishing since Aug. 24 because of low flows. Prior to that, the entire river was under a 2 p.m. to midnight closure because of high water temperatures. Both of these conditions stress and threaten wild trout.
According to the Jefferson River Drought Management Plan, closures on the Jefferson may be lifted when flows improve to above 300 cfs for seven consecutive days. That criterion has now been met and thermal conditions are expected to continue improving.
"This summer, the Jefferson River at Twin Bridges experienced its lowest flow since 1988; however, thanks to four irrigation canals participating in the Jefferson River Watershed Council Drought Plan, the river did not experience a fish kill," said Region 3 Fisheries Manager Travis Horton.
Anglers will want to be aware of other closures at this time on the Big Hole River and the Madison River:
Big Hole River
• Headwaters to mouth of the North Fork Big Hole - FULL CLOSURE
• North Fork Big Hole to Dickey Bridge - Closed 2 p.m. to midnight
• Melrose Bridge to the mouth - FULL CLOSURE
• Ennis Dam to the mouth - Closed 2 p.m. to midnight
For more information on this drought plan and others, go to FWP's drought webpage.