(Report compiled by Carol Henckel)
Please be advised that conditions can change daily so please call the contact person in the area you are planning on fishing for current daily information. Weather is changing constantly and some days wind and snow can be a big factor. Ice conditions are dangerous so be very aware of what you are walking on or using 4 wheelers on. Enjoy yourself but remember alcohol alters your judgment so use it sparingly while enjoying the outdoors. Keep an eye on the weather while you are out there and stay safe. Good luck fishing from the Montana Outdoor Radio Crew.
Rock Creek Marina-Bill 1-406-485-2560
“The ice is just too bad to go on. We have open water in places. We went
out on Saturday and drilled some holes. The ice was 14 inches, half of
what it was. It rained yesterday. It is just not safe. There is open
water 20 yards in front of the boat ramp. The water has come up one foot
in the last week,” Bill says. There is only a minimum of services. Bill is
around some days. We do have gas. If you need information leave a message
on the answering machine and Bill will get back to you.
Tongue River Reservoir
Tongue River Marina 1-406-757-2225 Colton/Bob Pederson/Warden Jordon
Ice houses have been pulled off the ice. People are seeing more open
water. Ice is no longer useable. Warden Jordon wants to remind fishermen
to check the regulations before bringing minnows in. The sauger limit is
only one. You can purchase live minnows from the minnow machine. It is
set up by the marina. They are sold by the dozen at the machine. The
marina is still closed for the winter season.
Clint Thomas- Hell Creek Marina 1-406- 557-2345
Hell Creek-Fort Peck Reservoir
**The following report is from last week, as unable to contact this business. Due to the weather conditions may have changed drastically.**
Hell Creek staff said,” Fishing is good, better than it has been. They
are catching lots of northern pike and some walleye every day. People are
trying more jigging for walleye and although slower than the pike they
are catching. They are finding the pike at 5 to 25 feet and the walleye
at 25 to 40 feet depths.
Clint is still reminding people, “if you are reserving campgrounds for
summer there are plenty of first come first serve camp sites available.
The only sites filled are the 30 electrical sites you have to reserve.
There are plenty of the other ones available you will just have to use
your own generator.”
Gene Moore Lake Ridge Motel 1-406-526-3597
Gene Moore, of Lake Ridge says,”The ice sucks. People just need to stay
off of the ice. It has crystalized and just is not good. At this point
there is not shore fishing on the lake. The river is open some and a
couple of boats were out there. They were catching a few lake trout and
rainbows. You can get a boat in from a couple of boat docks down blow Boy
Scout and atState land.
Gene said,” I drove by the Milk River today and it is really jammed up
with places where it has flooded over the banks. It did not look good.”
Lake Elmo Billings
Bob says,” Lake Elmo is open. Ice fishing is done.”
Cooney Reservoir Jenny/ Maleri
Fishing is not good. The ice is 30 to 40 feet from shore. The ice is
changing rapidly. We have open water in places. There is a sheet of
ice in a few places. Camp spots are first come first serve through the
Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner Bar Lavina 406-636-2261
Word ice is much less on Deadmans and Martinsdale. “Still some high
water although it has receded. Broadview pond is high.”
Don’s Lewistown- Dale 1-800-879-8194
“You can only fish at Spring Creek around here right now. They are doing
well and are catching rainbow trout and browns using mepps and panther
martins. Ice is in bad shape. Not safe,” Dale says.
The marina is not open. It is closed but cabins are still available for
other uses just call 1-406-429-2999.
Minnow Bucket-Eddie White 696-1281
“Word has said some people are catching some nice catfish using cut bait.
Some 3 to 6 pounds. The area at Pompey has ice and Waco has lots of
mud so getting on there is not good. I heard the Big Horn is open. Castle
Rock and Lake Elmo have open water. The river is still high,” Eddie
Eddie White is the new owner of the Minnow Bucket. Please note the new
phone number to call. The hours are Tuesday to Friday 11 to 7 pm, Saturday
7 to 7 pm and Sunday 7 to noon.
Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon
Sharon says, “There is open water out there. It is melting in the Bay.
They seem to be fishing and finding the most fish by the Christmas trees.
The bay has open water from shore. To get on the ice as of Tuesday you
are able to jump on. Conditions are changing constantly. The Christmas
tree drop is this Saturday. If you want to help with the project or see
it happen come around 9 am.” Don’t forget your license expired March
1st. You can always call us for conditions at the Silos. We will give you
the latest word.”
West Side Sports Jim 1-406-654-1611
“Fishing has been good. Nelson still has ice. That may be the last place
to ice fish in the state. Forchette was good fishing this weekend but
Fred Robinson broke loose. If I would be going I would bring my boat just
in case. Beware of ice conditions as they are constantly changing as the
temperature is warming. The milk is melting and the Missouri is open.
Lots of ice jams right now,” reports Jim.
West Side Sports has a new owner. Jim Mayer, the new owner, says, “my
hours on the shop will be 8 to 6 Monday to Saturday and we will be closed
on Sunday. “Stop in any time,” Jim says.
Nate says, “I heard this week that Tongue is opening up. Especially
along the shore. The Yellowstone at Huntley has been good for catfish
I heard. Someone went out and got 9 that were 7 to 8 pounds.
Yellowtail at Olka Bay Fort Smith was windy but they tried jigging for
walleyes, “Nate says.
Rich’s Tackle Richard 406-285-4540
“The ice is gone out of the rivers around here. You can do some bank
fishing. One fellow was able to put a jet boat out. Hauser is open
now,” Rich says.
Shop hours are Sunday 12 to 4 pm. Closed Monday. Tuesday to Saturday 7
am to 6 pm. You can always call ahead if you are coming through and need
something on off hours and we may be able to help.
Stillwater Anglers-Chris 406-322-4977
“There is a little bit of fishing is now happening. There has been some
wind. The clarity on the upper river is better. People are nymphing. The
Stillwater by Absarokee has been better in the last couple of days. The
Yellowstone has color and may be more problematic. Banks are still jammed
in places. Just really be careful,” Bill said. Our hours during the week
have changed in the shop and we are open Tuesday to Sat from 9 am to 2 pm
now. We are closed Sunday and Monday.
Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375 Rich
“Today the river CPS is 5,000. Nymphing is really good. Not good for dry
fly fishing. Use sow bugs and midge pupas. They are catching both rainbows
and browns. Black and cream seem to be doing the best. Fishing later in
the day is working best,” Hale said. Call if you need specific
information. Check for your supplies before coming as worms in the area
may be in short supply. The lake does have walleye and crappie but the
cold slowed success. Our shop hours have changed and we are open 7 am to
noon. Call for information.