Registration includes tickets to the Writers on Water Dinner and Auction.
For more information, please visit writersdinner.org

Please join us on September 30 to October 2nd in Missoula, MT for the first annual Hooks for Books, a weekend of fly-fishing to benefit the Creative Writing Department at the University of Montana. Fourteen two-person teams (twenty-eight anglers) will have the opportunity to fish some of the world’s premier trout streams with the region’s top guides, while enjoying Missoula’s culture, cuisine, and a few special surprises. Space is very limited, and we will sell out quickly, so register today!

Overview of Hooks for Books

Fourteen teams of two will fish in a two-day “one fly” style fly-fishing event to take place on The Bitterroot, Clark Fork, and Blackfoot Rivers—widely ranked among the world’s blue ribbon trout streams—to catch rainbow, brown, brook, and cutthroat trout. Because this is a small event, Hooks for Books has been able to staff with the region’s top guides to fish premier stretches of water that regularly produce 20-25 inch and larger trout.


This amount is partially tax deductible and will appear on your statement as University of Montana Foundation.

$3500 per team ($1750 per angler)

Team members may pay separately or as a team on the registration page. If you don’t have a team member please indicate during registration, and we will attempt to assign you to a team.

$6000 per corporate team (two anglers)

Corporate teams receive special recognition.

Optional Missoulian Special

Anglers have the added option to purchase a special fly for $100 per angler.

The Missoulian Special Fly

This fly will be specially chosen for the water conditions by a local expert a few days before the event and will be distributed at the opening cocktail party. Anglers my choose to fish with the fly either day in the event they lose their fly, or as an option to the day’s chosen fly.


  • Opening cocktail party and the best fishing swag bag ever created.
  • Two days of guided fishing for two, including transportation to river.
  • Cocktails and barbecue on October 1st .
  • Includes tickets to Writers on Water Dinner and Auction, to be held on the evening of October 2nd at the legendary Top Hat. Celebrate Hooks for Books with friends and literary luminaries. Includes dinner and libations, and the opportunity to bid on terrific fishing trips, equipment, and rare signed books.
  • Special recognition for corporate teams.

Please note: Fees do not include Montana fishing licenses, optional fishing days, travel, or accommodations. We’ve arranged a special rate of $199 per room (single or double) at The Residence Inn in downtown Missoula, which also includes breakfast. Mention HOOKS FOR BOOKS if you call for reservations at 406-542-6252, or book online by clicking this link.

Schedule for the Event

September 29 & 30
Three days is better than two!

Optional practice days for anglers at their own expense. Please contact our sponsor outfitter to books guides.

The Missoulian Angler
(406) 728-7766
Outfitting number: 36888

September 30
The Residence Inn

5:00 – 7:00 p.m.
Registration and welcome cocktail party at the host hotel, The Residence Inn.

October 1
Day One Event
Could this be you on day one?
The Boone and Crockett Club’s
National Headquarters

6:00 – 7:00 a.m.
Breakfast provided at the hotel.

7:15 a.m.
Anglers meet their guides at the Holiday Inn parking lot. Turn right out the front door of the Residence Inn and walk one block to the Holiday Inn lot for quick transportation to your assigned stretch of the Bitterroot, Clark Fork, or Blackfoot River. 

8:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Let’s fish! Hooks for Books Event with riverfront lunch.

6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Tonight, take a two block walk from the hotel to enjoy craft cocktails, and Missoula’s best beer, burgers, and pizza on the lawn at national headquarters of The Boone and Crockett Club, on the banks of the Clark Fork River. Our special guests include several MFA candidates, and University President Seth Bodnar. Dress warm, as this is an outdoor event.

Music will be provided by The Pettifoggers, and The Missoulian Angler will sponsor the Hooks for Books fly casting contest.

Whiskey Sommelier Kevin Head is conducting a rare whiskey tasting.

Tonight’s literary inspiration is provided by Austin Hagwood, currently pursuing his MFA in non-fiction at the UofM. In addition to being a terrific writer, Austin is a fishing guide, and a former fire lookout. He received his BA from Notre Dame, and an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge, where he launched botanical expeditions in Papua New Guinea through a National Geographic Early Career Grant. 

October 2
Day Two Event
Good luck on day two!
The World-Famous Top Hat

6:00 – 7:00 a.m.
Breakfast provided at the hotel.

7:15 a.m.
Anglers meet their guides in the parking lot of the Holiday Inn for quick transportation to their assigned stretch of the Bitterroot, Clark Fork, or Blackfoot River.

8:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Let’s fish! Hooks for Books Event with riverfront lunch.

6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
Cocktails, Dinner & Award Ceremony.

Tonight, take a one block walk to the world-famous Top Hat. Your registration includes a ticket to the Writers on Water Dinner and Auction, a celebration with food, cocktails, and big fish stories. A select few will be honored with a “Hemingway” — a special award given to exemplary anglers. You will have the opportunity to meet several MFA candidates, and some of your favorite writers may be in attendance. The evening will include a limited auction offering the opportunity to purchase incredible trips, fishing and sports gear, art, and autographed books from some of the world’s best writers.

Travel & Accommodations

Missoula International Airport is served by Alaska, Delta, American, Allegiant, Frontier, and United Airlines, with direct flights from Portland, Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis, Phoenix, and Chicago.

We’ve arranged a special rate of $199 per room at the new Residence Inn in downtown Missoula, located in the historic Mercantile Building. The hotel offers airport transportation and given the proximity to all the events there is no need for a car, as everything is in walking distance. Mention HOOKS FOR BOOKS if you call for reservations at 406-542-6252, or book online by clicking this link.

Other very convenient accommodations include The AC Hotel, right next door to the Residence Inn, and The Holiday Inn, which is across the street.

Missoula is also served by Uber and Lyft.

Missoula’s thriving nightlife is the perfect answer to a long day of fly-fishing!

About Hooks for Books

Hooks for Books is a charitable fly-fishing event that benefits the University of Montana Creative Writing Program. All net proceeds support the program. It was founded in 2021 by UofM Alumni Tim O’Leary and Chris Dombrowski, to combine their loves of literature, fly-fishing, and the UofM. O’Leary is an entrepreneur and writer, and Dombroski is a renowned poet and fly-fishing guide, the founder of the Beargrass Writing Retreat, and most recently was appointed Assistant Director of the MFA program.

Like many universities, the UofM has experienced severe budget cuts that severely impacted the Creative Writing Department, and Hooks for Books supports those shortfalls to build a new generation of writers, while giving visitors the opportunity to experience some of the world’s finest trout fishing and the beautiful community of Missoula—a place where “the river literally runs through it.”

UofM’s Creative Writing Program is one of our nation’s oldest and most prestigious, with an international reputation. Founded in 1920, it began offering one of the first M.F.A. degrees in 1966, and has boasted such iconic Western writers as Richard Hugo, Madeline DeFrees, Judy Blunt, James Lee Burke, Rick DiMarinis, and William Kittredge, while hosting Pulitzer Prize winners Richard Ford and Jorie Graham, and literary luminaries David James Duncan, Jess Walter, Susan Cheever, Barry Lopez, Hunter S. Thompson, Ken Kesey, and dozens of others.

Graduates have become essential voices in literature and the arts. Most recently, Stephanie Land’s best-selling book Maid was adapted into a hit Netflix television series. Andrew Sean Greer’s book Less was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction. Emily Danforth’s novel Plain Bad Heroines was named the best Book of the Year by The Washington Post. Kim Barnes memoir was shortlisted for the Pulitzer. Robert Wrigley’s ten books of poetry have been awarded Pushcart Awards and a Guggenheim Fellowship. James Welch, who both attended and taught in the M.F.A. program, was the preeminent Native American author of seven books. His first novel, Winter in the Blood was shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize. Fools Crow won the American Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. And now we look forward to helping create a new generation of writers. We appreciate the support offered by Hooks for Books contestants to continue this important legacy of literature.

Literature is where I go to explore the highest and lowest places in human society and in the human spirit, where I hope to find not absolute truth but the truth of the tale, of the imagination and of the heart.

Salman Rushdie

Our Outfitters & Supporters

We are proud to have assembled the best crew of outfitters and guides in Western Montana. Our outfitters — Missoulian Angler, Renegade Fly Fishing Outfitters, and Missoula Fly Fishing Outfitters — and guides have accrued over 200 years of guiding experience on this watershed. 

We’ve also partnered with some terrific companies and organizations that support Hooks for Books, including:


Can’t make it to the event, but want to support a new generation of writers? We welcome your donation. All donations are fully tax deductible.

The Missoula Valley as seen on a fall evening from Mt. Sentinel.