South Fork Flathead River Montana Fly Fishing, Boating

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South Fork Flathead River

Flowing south to north, the South Fork of the Flathead River begins deep in the Bob Marshall Wilderness. After 60 miles it is gobbled up by the Hungry Horse Reservoir and then flows for another 5 miles into the town of Hungry Horse, Montana.

  • Enjoy great fishing above the Hungry Horse Reservoir.
  • Venture deep into the Bob Marshall Wilderness for hard to reach but great fishing and hiking.

What can I do and see along the South Fork of the Flathead River?

  • Fishing:
    There are two sections to the South Fork, above Hungry Horse Reservoir and below the reservoir. Above the reservoir, you can drive very rough forest service roads for 50 miles or so until reaching a trailhead. Anglers fish all up and down this road with waders and the fishing is superb. But the truly best fishing around is accessed via a long hiking trail into the depths of the Bob Marshall Wilderness. Below the reservoir and before its confluence with the main fork of the Flathead River, the fishing is slowly coming back to life after recent changes were made to the dam.
  • Rafting:
    Upstream from Hungry Horse Reservoir, you can putin at an unofficial access point called Cedar Flats and float 18 very scenic river miles to the reservoir. A short walk to the putin is required. Below the dam, the 5 mile stretch offers a small section with class IV rapids.
  • Hiking:
    The upper reaches of the South Fork are paralleled by hiking and pack trails that seem to go on forever. While the 50 mile drive from the reservoir can be rough, many seeking the solitude of the wilderness and the spectacular scenery deem it well worth the trip.

Where is the South Fork of the Flathead River?

Flowing from the depths of the Bob Marshall Wilderness, the South Fork runs 60 river miles before dumping into the Hungry Horse Reservoir. It flows for 5 short miles from the reservoir to its confluence with the Middle Fork at Hungry Horse Montana, forming the main fork of the Flathead River.

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