Fall fishing is turning on in western rivers
By Hookemharry

Posted: September 25, 2003

Fall has definitely arrived on our local rivers.

As we get cooler weather, the hoppers are gradually decreasing in number. They will, however, be around until we get our first hard frost.

Afternoons seem to be the best to fish some of the fall hatches, according to Doug Persico of Rock Creek Fishermans Mercantile. “All the rivers have good blue-winged olive hatches and the mahogany duns are also supplying good fishing,” said Persico. “Plus, there is a huge orange caddis that hatches in the fall and is also coming off in the evenings.”

Brown trout will start to spawn soon. One sure sign of this is the males are even more brightly colored than usual. When fishing browns, try using a dark colored streamer during this spawning period.

Persico also adds that this one of the best times of the year to spend some time on the river. Most anglers are picking up their shotguns, bows and rifles so in some cases you will have the river all to yourself.

Reports out of Holter Lake from Paul, at the Canyon Store, are good for trout anglers. He tells me that the walleye fishing is hit and miss but that trout fishing has been excellent.

Anglers have been trolling about 10-20 feet deep for the nice size trout who have come out of deep water as the water has cooled down a little. This is also the time of year that trollers start to catch nice size trout on Canyon Ferry Lake. Troll a Crocodile or Thomas Cyclone two or three colors. Action seems to the best between Cemetery Island and and White Earth campground.

WILDLIFE BANQUETS: Wildlife conservation group banquets will start this Friday.

The local Five Valley Chapter of Pheasants Forever will hold ots annual banquets at the UC Ballroom on the University of Montana campus. Tickets are $50 for adults and $30 for youth or spouse. Contact Jon Lee at 721-9919 for more information.

Looking ahead, the Mule Deer Foundation has formed a Western Montana Chapter. This organization funds a variety of projects such as a noxious weed pilot project at the Montana Elkhorn Wildlife Management Unit. The local chapter will put on its first banquet this Saturday Oct. 11th. The event will be held at the Double Tree Hotel in Missoula, better know as the Edgewater. Part of the proceeds of the banquet and auction will be kept in the area to fund a project selected by the Western Montana Chapter. Men and women interested in joining the local chapter can call Mary Jo Berry at 406-822-4800 or Rich Gensch at Buckhorn Taxidermy at 406-244-4868. If you want to know more about the organization, log onto www.muledeer.org.

Also Tom Severson, the local chair for the Missoula Chapter of Ducks Unlimited, says that DU has decided to move its banquet back to Dec. 13. The last couple of years the banquet had been held in September.