So Many Fish, So Little Time: Captain’s Column (6.5.14)
By angelamontana

Posted: June 5, 2014

The lake and reservoir fishing has been very good all over the state. I just got back from a trip to Fort Peck Reservoir. I was joined by Jim Johnson from Lincoln and Brandt Hamernick from Missoula on the Dry Arm. This time of the year it’s the best place on the lake to catch some really nice fish as a lot of walleyes spawn in that area of Fort Peck. Hamernick had a very good week catching some large walleyes as he caught 30 and ½ and two 29 and ½ inch fish using Kits Tackle glass minnow jig tipped with a night crawler. Johnson had smaller fish but caught the most between 25 and 28 inch length trolling a small corky with a small smiley blade in front of it tipped with a night crawler. The Rock Creek Walleye Tournament will be take place this weekend and it will be interesting to see how much weight it takes to win it. Normally the winning team has in the high 70 or low 80 pound range for the two day tournament. Hamernick also caught a 36 inch northern pike the biggest of the trip. If you like to pike fish then Fort Peck is the place to go. I spoke with Mary Beth Kibler who is based out Hell Creek Marina on the main lake of Fort Peck and she said the walleye bite was red hot last week, “We had to wait two hours to clean fish at the fish cleaning station so everyone is catching walleyes and northern right now”. They were catching walleyes in 17-20 feet of water.

The walleye fishing slowed a little bit on Canyon Ferry last weekend mainly because of the tremendous spring run-off that is entering the south end of the lake. Once the run-off settles down the walleye fishing should improve on the south end according to Adam Strainer from FWP, “The influx of water has taken the surface water temperature from 65 degrees to 54 degrees on average this past weekend”. Strainer also reported that the average size of the walleyes that are being caught by anglers has been averaging around 16 ½ inches, at least that what the creel survey produced last weekend. “My buddy went fishing by the Gates of Mountain on Holter last weekend and did very well on the walleyes”, said Strainer. They were using a jig tipped with a night crawler.

The Mr Pike Classic is this weekend on Seeley and Salmon Lakes. The 2-day tourney will attract between 60-80 anglers. Northern Pike fishing was hot two weeks ago but this past weekend the reports that Brad Walters from Seeley Lake Sporting Goods received indicated is slowed down. Sign up deadline for the tourney is Friday night at the Filling Station in Seeley from 6-9pm. There is a $30 entry fee. Call 406-677-5253.

Salmon Flies are out on Rock Creek but as of Monday the creek was running very high at 2730 cubic feet per second (CFS) so the CFS will have to come down to allow it to be fishable. Call Rock Creek Mercantile at 406-825-6440 for daily updates on the salmon flies whereabouts and river condition.

Babes and Bullets had another successful event last Saturday. “The 3rd Annual Babes N Bullets shooting event, a women only event, was held May 31st at the Deer Creek Range in Missoula. Over 100 participants came together for this event from as far away as Florida. A total accounting is not yet available but initial numbers suggest around $14,000 was raised for Tough Enough to Wear Pink of Montana”, said Ryan Crowin Marketing Manager of Bob Wards in Missoula one of the sponsors of the event.

(Written by the Captain)