Trout Town USA: Ennis, Montana
Trout Town USA: Edition 2 – By Nicholas A. Peterson
Slogan: Trout Country
Fishing: Fly Fishing the Madison River
The Local Fly Shop: Trout Stalkers.
With Ennis having four fly shops you have to pick one as your local and mine is Trout Stalkers. Joe Dilschneider has been an outfitter for 20+ years in the Madison Valley and has opened up his fly shop here in downtown Ennis. With fly gear especially tailored to fishing the Madison and the other surrounding Blue Ribbon streams in the area he carries everything you need to crush big fish and if he doesn’t have it, you don’t need it here on the Madison. Offering an extensive fly selection, local knowledge and guided trips Trout Stalkers will either put you one fish or help you stalk them yourself.
After the day on the Madison: When you are done fishing for the day you can bump elbows with fellow anglers and local guides at one spot and that is the Gravel Bar. With good food, good drinks and good atmosphere you can’t beat it.
Local Drink: Ennis is blessed to have its own local distillery, Willie’s Distillery, offering locally distilled moonshine, honey moonshine, bourbon whiskey and chokecherry liqueur. The tasting room is open 10am – 8pm daily you can enjoy a couple ounces booze and take the tour of the distillery to see how it is all made.
Date Night: If you are looking for a fine dining experience then Ennis offers two renowned bistros, The Continental Divide and Banditos. Banditos is famous for its spicy high country cuisine but providing everybody with a great time. Expect great food, good music and a rip roaring good time!
Where to Stay:
Vacation Rental: If you are looking for an awesome spot to enjoy the Madison Valley, the Thextondale Homestead is that place. Offering vintage lodging on the Madison it is a one of a kind place.
Unique: If you are looking for a unique lodging experience NorthShore of the Madison is your place. Located on the shoreline of Ennis Lake, just a few minute drive north of the town of Ennis, NorthShore offers lodging, guided fly fishing trips, private chef and so much more.
Motel: The El Western Cabins & Lodge with the Rainbow Valley Lodge form a giant compound located just over the river from Ennis that brings back the lodging experience to something you see in old movies.
Camp: The Madison River offers camping on most of the Fishing Access Sites up and down the river. One of our favorites is the Palisades / South Madison Access which offers you stunning views and great fishing right on the Madison River.
Places to see:
Yellowstone National Park: Yellowstone is the world’s first national park and just an hour away to the west entrance of the park. If you’ve never seen it than you have missed out or you should go spend a day or two touring this amazing spot on earth.
Virginia City, Montana: The wild west mining town of Virginia City is a historic landmark located just 15 minutes from Ennis. The ghost town is alive and frozen in time with the well-preserved Victorian buildings of the old west. Pan for gold, ride a train or get some candy at Cousin’s Candy Shop.