I don’t know if the nice weather brought out more anglers or the fishing is really starting to pick up, but the word around western Montana is it is time to go fishing!
Flathead Lake is at the head of the list for places to go.
The water level is still low in preparation for spring run-off, but according to daily reports, it is coming up slowly. The low water makes some of the ramps almost impossible to use.
Some boaters are using the ramp on the south end at Salish Point. But bring your hip boots because most of the boats I witnessed needed a little help from someone guiding them onto the trailer.
The ramp at Blue Bay is probably the best one at this point.
The perch bite is going strong in east Polson Bay on Flathead Lake. Perch fisherman had some success on Saturday and then even better success on Sunday.
The weather warmed up and the bigger perch have moved into the area.
Most anglers are fishing in 3 to 3.5 feet of water but that depth will change as the lake starts to fill up.
Anglers are still having luck off the City Dock in Polson. However, the size of the perch there is a lot smaller than those caught a couple of weeks ago. You can see the difference in the size on www.montanaoutdoor.com as my 8 year old daughter Maris can been seen holding up perch she caught on the docks and then holding a perch that she caught while fishing with Jim Farrington by boat in east bay.
The surface water temperature was 46 degrees when we starting fishing Sunday and warmed up to 49 degrees by 2 p.m. The fishing seemed to get better, the warmer the water got.
Fishing on Holter Lake is also going strong.
“We have had some 30-trout catch and release days,” said Bob Culp from his cell phone Monday from Holter Lake. Bill Phelps and Culp made it over last weekend and the trout were really biting week. “We trolled two colors and long lined orange/silver midge wobblers and Rapala number 5 or 7 black-and-gold and gold-and-orange,” reported Culp.
Western Montana area Rivers are also fishing well. Fly-fisherman might try their favorite river spot before the weather warms too much and the run-off begins.
Browns Lake is also fishing well for fly-fisherman as the big trout are getting ready to spawn and are close to shore.
Take time out to support Ducks Unlimited this Friday May 2nd at the Double Tree Hotel. This special spring banquet is sponsored by the University of Montana College Chapter. Tickets are $30 and for college students $20. Call Ryle Benke at 546-1587.
“We are giving away over 80 dozen Greenhead Gear decoys, Avery blinds, and of course, shotguns,” added Benke. The slogan for the DU Waterfowl Hunters Party events like this is ”This ain’t your daddy’s DU banquet.” Should be a lot of fun.