Eastern Montana Fishing Report for the Week of 7.18.16
By angelamontana

Posted: July 20, 2016

The summer weather means you should stay aware. The weather and water levels can be very unpredictable.  Enjoy yourself but remember alcohol alters your judgment. So use it sparingly while enjoying the outdoors. Keep an eye on the weather as conditions such as temperature, wind and precipitation can change quickly. This report is compiled on Monday and Tuesday and reflects conditions and results of fishing from the past week.  If you wish other information feel free to contact most parties for current daily information. Good luck fishing from the Montana Outdoor Radio Crew.

(Report compiled by Carol Henckel)

Rock Creek Marina-Bill 1-406-485-2560

“Bill   says,” fishing has been good this week.  People have caught lots of walleye.  You can find them just about everywhere.  They are at 20 to 35 feet. In the heat of the day the fish are going deep.  Worms and leaches are working.  They are catching lots of small mouth on the rock piles.  Very few northerns being caught.  Only a few perch.   ”


Tongue River Reservoir /Bob

“The fishing seems to have improve  if we can gage by the cleaning station.  The weather cooperated this week. The water is pretty warm,” Bob says.


Tongue River Marina  1-406-757-2225 Wade Stephanie /Warden Jordan Straley

“Are you ready for this?  Crappie fishing is excellent. They are definitely being caught.  The northern pike are also biting.  I saw a 39 ½ inch pike that weighed in at 15 pounds.  People are also catching some nice bass.  I have seen some 3 an 4 pounders and even a 5 pounders. The big news is that we have had some guys who have gotten their limits on walleye this week.  They are using cranks and going 2 to 2 ½ miles and a few are bottom bouncing.  Fishing really has been good this week.  I really want to fish and can’t wait to get out there on Monday.  Fishing is really good,” Wade says.

We are open 7 days a week.  My hours will be Sunday to Thursday 8 am to 6 pm and Friday and Saturday 7 am to 9pm.  I have minnows, leaches and worms on hand. Remember as of April 1st no shiner minnows are allowed on Tongue,” Wade said.


Clint Thomas- Hell Creek Marina 1-406- 557-2345  Marina Matheson-Park Office  Hell Creek-Fort Peck Reservoir east to

Cody   explains,” Fishing is still pretty good. They are catching walleye and northerns.  They both seem to be at 15 to 25 feet.  When it is warm they are going deep.  When it cools then they go shallow.  The walleye   are being found   west between Snow Creek and Crooked Creek on the north side.  The walleye being caught on   bottom bouncers.  Try blues and silvers with a worm or leech. We saw some 9 and 23 pound pike this week.  ”

We are open 7 days a week, 7 am to 6 pm now.”

The new park manager for Hell Creek State Park is Marina Matheson. “


Lake Ridge Motel Eddie and Carrie Mindt 1-406-526-3597

Eddie says, ”They have been catching walleye the last couple of days.  Before that very few walleye were being caught. We had some rain and wind this week.   Some salmon were caught today including a 17 pounder.  Actually they are getting them at the face of the dam at 65 to 100 feet using squids and flashers.  The lake trout are a dime a dozen right now. Try at 110 feet.  People are using  jigs. I do have herring here now.


Lake Elmo Billings FWP-Bob Gibson

Fishing is good real early. The hot weather has been a factor for sure.  Fishermen are using power bait, lures  or worms.


Cooney Reservoir  Glenis-John

Walleye fishing has picked up some.  Go to 20 to 30 feet.  Head to the southwest.  Offshore they are catching some rainbows.

The new Park Ranger is, Skylar Mitchell a transfer from Dillon.


Deadmans  Tony Stefani

Tony says, ” This week people were catching fish.  They are catching from the boat and shore.  Guys are catching rainbow and salmon. The waters are lowering so some of the islands are coming up but you can get out.  This week it rained every day and campers usually stayed one day and then left early. “

Campers remember it is now a pay site.


Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner Bar Lavina 406-636-22

“Fishing seems to be normal at  Martinsdale and Deadmans .  I just am not hearing anyone is doing good.  We had some windy days and that upset the fishing.  On Martinsdale  in the boat they are using  silver colored rapellas . They sure are not knocking them dead ,  ” Terry said


Don’s Lewistown-Dale 1-800-879-8194

Dale   explains, “   Spring Creek is low and clear. Small spinners seem to be working.  Try  chartreuse and red, Copper Johns and princes or flashbacks. For dries use the Adams.  We are seeing some baetes  hatches.

Achley Lake  is good from boat or shore.  Try  worms and spinners in silver and gold. From the bank head for the gravel and use the mosquito fly or a shrimp pattern.

On the Missouri river night  crawlers  are doing well.

For Crooked Creek expect to get a lot of crappie.  Use a worm harness with a night crawler or leech.”


Crooked Creek-Grant

Crooked Creek is fishing well right now for crappie.  Guys are heading toward Crooked Creek also for walleye.  Please Call for information. The number is 1-406-429-2999.


Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon

“ Fishing  has been  good .   Head   south  to White Earth and then to Goose Bay. For the walleye try bottom bouncers in pink and purple.  Use bright colors.  Try  crank baits and bottom bouncers. Rainbows   are biting  all over,” Sharon said.

The Marina is open. Hours are 7 am to 7 pm.


West Side Sports Jim Mayer 1-406-654-1611

Jim says, “ Nelson  is fishing good for walleye .   Spinners are the key.  For walleye and pike go 18 to 22 feet deep.  For perch try a jig with a worm and go deep.  Crappie fishing   on Forchette  is very aggressive. They are really shallow right now.  Some guys are catching walleye by going deeper like 25 to 45 feet.    Use multiple tactics. Most are working well.

Access has changed.  To access you have to go to the gravel near the north on ramp.  You can launch from there.   The water is definitely down.”

Shop hours are 8 to 6 Monday to Saturday and closed on Sunday.


Billings-Scheels Dan , McCahen

McCade says,” At   Fort Peck  the middle part of the water is fishing well from Hell Creek to the pines.  You will catch lots of middle size ones.  Cranks are working

The Yellowstone river  is doing well for bass right now.

At Cooney they are catching  walleye and  small mouth.  Mostly   after dark.  Try slip   bobbering   with leeches.  “


Rich’s Tackle Richard  406-285-4540

Rich says, “ I went to Fort Peck this week and we got blown off every day.  Sunday and Saturday we never got on.  We caught a few crappies and golden eyes  but it was miserable.  It rained and rained. Guys headed to Crooked Creek to Timbercreek and catching some walleye.

I heard Lake Francis is fishing good.  Mostly walleye and perch.  Holter is also good for perch.

The rivers are getting mossy and are definitely lower.  The Missouri appears to be the worst.  All are pretty hard to fish right now.  Don’t forget   the Madison hoot  owl  rules are in effect. ”


Stillwater Anglers-Chris 406-322-4977

“ The   Stillwater is warming. Fishing has slowed.    The flow is  up to 1350 cfn.  Try a large dropper.  Jack Cabes and Chernobyls are working. For nymphs any soft tackle like hairs ear.

The Yellowstone   is fishing okay.  Drop nymphs when floating.  Use dries in the evening.  Watch the water temperature as it is rising. It ihas cleared off and held.  We are seeing some caddis and PMD’s out there,  “ Bill says.


Montana Adventures and Angling in Fort Smith  Beau McFadyean 406-855-3612

“  I am now on the big Horn.  The cfs 2200.  From 6 mile to Afterbay the float is grassy.  There is so much grass  you just can’t nymph unless  you want to clean the line constantly.  It is pretty frustrating for the beginner.  After noon to the evening  look for a caddis hatch. The feeding is not strong.   The  float is better at 3 mile.  For dry fly action use black cadis and grasshoppers.  After that use nymphs and grasshoppers.   Throwing them we are seeing some big browns and lots of rainbows,” Beau says.


Steven Caldwell  guide

Steven fishes the Missouri year round.  For nymph fishing fish the dam to the Craig.  It is almost on fire.  Try a number  16 blooms fly or a split or crackback.  For spin try   6 feet below the water with a bottom bouncer with a split indicator.  The crayfish are working at the Canyon area.  To fish dries the fishing varies from day to day.  The rest of the water is good for tricots .   It can be great for tricot.  The spinner fall is on at 9:30 to 10:30. If we get a big rain and wait a little the grass may clear  some.  On the upper Big Horn it is still clear but it is just stating the moss in the Canyon.  The cfs is 4320 to 4330,


Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375

“Fishing is very good.  The cfs is now down to  2200. It is 103 here today.  The water temp is 56 degrees.   We are seeing Yellow Sally’s and  PMDs . Poodle Snifers are working.  Nymphing   is good.   Try an Gray Ray or tan ray in a 16 or 18 or soft tackle or a flashback .  Some are having success with a two tone worm sow.   PMD’s  and black caddis are working for dry flies.  For streamers   try zonkers and thin mints,” Stephanie  said.

Our shop hours are 7 am to 7 pm now Monday to Sunday.


Riverside Anglers in West Yellowstone : Alice Owsley, fishing guide and outfitter 406-640-1698

Alice says, “The Madison is fishing well with small dries, pale morning duns, yellow sallies and tan caddis have all caught good fish in the last week. Nymphing with caddis has been productive late in the day.


Yellowstone National Park

High elevation, cold mountain streams are the place to be during these hot summer days. Fish are eating pale morning duns and small stoneflies. Should see more hoppers in open meadows soon.  Get those fish back in the water as quick as possible and don’t forget your bear spray! “