June is arguably one of the best months to fish in Montana. Whether you believe that or not, the fact is that fish are biting in many locations across Montana. It’s time to get after them.
The local river fishing is still a little iffy, of course, just because of the high water.
With the warmer days we’ve been having, the run-off is doing its thing to muddy things up a bit on major rivers like the Blackfoot, Bitterroot, and Clark Fork.
But look for them to clear in a couple of weeks and then fishing will be excellent. Check with your local fly shop or sporting good store to see what hatch is going on and what river it is taking place.
Already, salmonflies are taking center stage in some fishermen’s minds.
“The salmonflies are up by the Dalles area and Gillies Bridge,” said Doug Persico from Rock Creek Fishermen’s Mercantile. “The fishing has been great on Rock Creek and we are expecting Golden Stones to be out on the lower creek any day now.”
Float season is still going on Rock Creek but it is always a great river to wade fish as well.
“I have been catching some kokanee salmon while fishing Lake Mary Ronan,” reported Jens Gran, from Polson. “It has not been a runaway by any means but the fish are in the 11-12 inch class.”
More fishing news comes from Placid Lake. Mike, at Denny’s Copy Stop, said, “The perch fishing was excellent over Memorial Day weekend when we caught some really nice sized perch and even the sunfish loved taking our bait.”
Fishing over at Holter Lake has been excellent according to Lew Tripp, otherwise known as Rainbow Rudy for his fondness for fishing trout and steelhead. “We limited out on trout in the morning the three days that we fished and then tried out luck on walleyes each day,” said Tripp. “The walleye fishing was just as good so we had a great weekend.”
I asked Tripp who if he was a converted walleye fisherman now? “It was fun but I am still a trout man,” Tripp answered. “We also saw a guy that had caught six nice kokanee salmon at Holter that ranged in size from 2 to 4 pounds.” He told me the angler that caught the salmon was trolling in about 35 feet of water just south of an area known as Split Rock.
Canyon Ferry Lake, which is a popular spot for many anglers in Western Montana to fish, has been home to some good walleye and trout fishing. The walleye fishing has picked up after a week and half of slowing down on the south end of the lake. Trout fishing is still good north toward the White Earth Campground and Goose Bay Campground area.
Bass fishermen have been having some good success on Noxon Reservoir and Ninepipes Reservoir. The lower Flathead River is also starting to pick up for small mouth bass and northern pike.
And far east at Fort Peck, the walleye bite has begun with good catches on both the Big Dry Arm and at Hell Creek. Jigs and minnows are the best bets now, but look for a good spinner bite to be going before month’s end.
Yes, June is a great fishing month, so get out and remember to take a kid along with you. They’ll thank you for it all their lives.