there is a saying that adventure travel is only adventurous after the fact. during the trip it is more like a day-long pain in the butt. sometimes fly fishing is like that. it is not until the last rays of the sun (or later for those madison river evenings) slip away that the day starts to become fishing stories. gathered with friends around a table of food and drink the eats become more epic, the flies smaller, the wind louder, the misses more painful and the mistakes become more hilarious. it is here in this moment that the memories are cast. and it is here in this place, at this time that you need a cold one, a fried one and one on a bun. or something like that. Follow my blog with bloglovin

The Big Hole

The Dewey Bar
Melrose, Divide, Wise River, MT
One of the best things about The Big Hole is that there are a series of no nonsense, you better be driving a truck, Montana bars at every little town and take out. They are sometimes little more than plywood on barrels (Melrose Bar) and they are all staffed by locals who can greet you with a cheery "watchya drinkin' hon?" (The Glen Bar), or the long stare (the bar just up the road from Wise River Club).

You may learn about bunco from hungover ladies of a certain age (Wise River Club). You may hear a story about a hunting guide who left his client out in the snow. Lost. And how he lost his drinking spot. (The Glen Bar). You might hear about a busted hip (Divide Bar). Or why orange juice and beer taste good together (The Hitchin Post). If you are lucky, patient and quiet, you could learn the finer points of fishing a 7 wt rod with two streamers (porch of the Sunrise Fly Shop).

Food is usually chips, pickled eggs or maybe a frozen pizza. But the beer is cold and the company authentic. So leave your city boy attitude outside, pull up a stool, order a can of Rainier's and dive in to real Montana.