The Oldman River starts high in the Rocky Mountains and flows all the way
out on to the prairies before finally joining the Bow River to form the South Saskatchewan River.
We guide on both the upper and lower Oldman, but the beauty and wildness
of the upper draws us there most often. Up here the river is in a gorgeous mountain setting, and the fish are plentiful--and
often big as well. It is easily accessed from Highway 22 and gravel roads for most of its length
in this stretch. Fantastic boulder-filled pocket water, along with glassy runs, await you on this river. The fish are eager
to take the dry fly in the faster pockets, and if you hit a good hatch your day of fishing will be second to none. Cutthroats,
Rainbows, and Bull Trout are the quarry in the upper sections. Only a 1 hour and 45 minute drive from Calgary
can put you on some of the best water this river has to offer.
The Oldman has a great population of cutthroat trout in it, and the fish
average 13-17 inches (smaller in the upper reaches above the falls). Some larger cutthroats of 18 to 23 inches have been taken
as well. There is also a good amount of rainbows, with the population getting thicker the farther downstream you go. They
average 14-18 inches, with the odd fish of 22 or 23 inches as a nice surprise. Bull trout inhabit the reaches below the falls,
and get quite large here. We have landed many 25 to 30 inchers from here, and the possibility of 30 - 35 inches does
Oldman River Fish Species:
to 20-23 inches (larger ones present but less common)
to 18-21 inches (larger ones present but very rare)
Cuttbow (Rainbow/Cutt hybrid)
to 18-21 inches
to 30 inches plus
to 23-25 inches
but only below the Resevoir and still less common than the cutthroat and rainbows
to 20 inches
to 36+ inches but only below the Resevoir
You may choose between full-day or half-day (if available)
walk-and-wade trips for fishing the Oldman, or combined with other streams in the area for a full day of mountain trout
madness. Please see our Trip Information page for what is involved in each and current rates.
The main attraction on the Oldman will be the cutts,
the large bull trout, and the exceptional dry fly fishing. You can expect at least a few takes from every good run on a warm
afternoon, and when there are hatches on the water the fishing can get absolutely phenomenal. In recent seasons the drake
hatches saw fish jumping clear out of the river to get at the naturals...and our flies too!
On a typical day we will use nymphing rigs, strip
streamers, and float dry flies for maximum success. One of the major attractions to fishing the Oldman is you never know what
might be hunting your fly next.
But THE attraction to the Oldman is its pristine wilderness
setting. The river is set in mountain valleys, with some canyon sections as well. We will guide you to easy access and wading,
spectacular scenery, and beautiful wild trout.