With the fire season well underway and a smoky haze covering Missoula most days, I thought it might be a good idea to give you some fishing reports just in case you have the opportunity to take advantage of them.
Some of the fishing reports will require traveling a little bit and some of the reports are just a few miles away.
Across the state on Fort Peck Reservoir on the face of the dam, the fishing is mixed depending on what you are after. “There was an 18-pound salmon brought in last week,” said Gene Moore, from Lakeridge Motel and Tackle Shop. “We have also heard of reports of more salmon being caught but have not seen any more other than the 18 pounder.”
The Chinook salmon season should be well underway, but as of yet not very many anglers are chasing them. The last few years have seen the angler hours spent trolling for salmon go down as well as the catch rate.
“Walleye fishing has remained strong this August and the lake trout fishing is good too but could start tapering off,” said Moore. You can reach him for daily updates at 526-3597.
Fresno Reservoir has seen a few good days of walleye fishing despite the drop in its water level. “The fish being caught recently have not been as big as they were a couple of weeks ago but the numbers are still strong,” says Howie Stromberg from Havre.
Stromberg also indicated that the northern pike are tough to keep off the hook but are small for the most part. “Once in a while, somebody might catch a 7 or 8 pounder,” said Stromberg 265-3441.
Tiber Dam walleye fishing is very good. “The fisherman have been catching lot of nice 16 to 17 inch walleye lately,” said Sarah from Tiber Marina. They have been using bottom bouncers and leeches for bait and fishing up the Bootlegger Arm where the water runs into the lake and is cooler.
“The marina will be open till the week after Labor Day weekend,” added Sarah They have all the bait and gas that you might need. 759-7100.
Reports from Lake Frances are saying that the lake is too low for most boats to launch so not much as far as fishing reports have come from that area lately.
Canyon Ferry Lake is still producing walleye catches but they are running small in size. “The walleye’s are small the but the perch are good size”, said Charmin from Silos RV at 2656-3100. Most the fisherman are fishing south of White Earth Campground where trout are being caught trolling 16-20 feet deep as well.
Lake Mary Ronan has not had a lot of activity because of the smoke and fire. “We have heard of spotty reports of salmon being caught,” said Dick Zimmer from Zimmer Tackle at Pablo at 675-0068. This is the time of the year that the salmon start to school up and spawn.
Zimmer also said there are reports of perch being caught on Lake Mary Ronan too!
Smallmouth bass fishing has been very good on the lower Flathead River just west of Perma. “The river is low so if you are going to launch make sure you have a smaller aluminum boat,” said Bill Brown who recently caught a 26-pound northern pike out of the Flathead River.
Our old buddy Vince Pernicano, the Wildlife Chef, accompanied Brown on that trip and also caught a nice sized northern pike that weighed in at 14 pounds. Pernicano caught his pike on a spoon and Brown was using smelt.