Central to Eastern Montana Fishing Report 4.24.19
By angelamontana

Posted: April 25, 2019

Spring   is  here and that means sudden changes in weather. Flooding could become a problem.  Outdoor enthusiasts including fishermen need to pay attention to these changes.   Storms can   happen    quickly so fishermen or fisherwomen need to   keep in touch with the weather service and let others know where they are for safety sake when out and about.  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, fire and precipitation   can   come in with fierce strength.  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- Monty LeTexier , Wyatt   call 1-406-230-1283  for Linda 

Marina number is  1-406-485-2560

 Monty reports,” we have had a couple of groups that fished from shore.

And found the bite is on.  Someone caught a 36 inch pike from the bank.  They are catching  Lake trout and catfish also from the bank.  The boaters are finding a few walleye while heading toward McGuire Creek pulling bottom bouncers with a minnow.”

  Linda and  Monty are  available to make reservations for spring by calling 1-406-465-0241 or the above numbers.

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

Raymond reports, “  I am hearing fishing is okay.  Someone did catch a large  crappie.  Some people have caught some bass.  The surface water temperature has been 46 degrees.  The water level is still 3426 cfs.  We are working on the docks and they will probably go in today. (Wednesday) The electricity is on now in the sites.  The Kats tournament is this weekend.     Remember to check your regulations for the information for this region about what minnows  you may use on Tongue. “

Tongue River Marina  1-406-757-2225 Wade, Stephanie, Greg /Warden Jordan Staley

Wade, the marina owner reports, “Some nice fish were caught this past weekend on Tongue.  It has been a bit slow. The bass seem to be in depths of 6 to 15 feet.  The crappies are at 22 to as much as 50 feet depths.  Going south the water temperature was 52 degrees and going north was 42 degrees.  People are saying they are marking fish and that they are stacked but not real  active.  Right now things are a few weeks early.

 The marina  Is open and I now have minnows.  We are set up for spring with supplies, food, drinks and beer for your camping needs.  Remember the rules on bringing minnows to Tongue River if you come to fish and that   your license expired March 1st. ”

 Hell Creek Marina- Clint Thomas-Layne 1-406- 557-2345  

Clint says,” The first place winner of the  Tough Guy tournament was Chris Keller and Jessie Reuter with 37 pounds of walleye.  The pike are starting up in the  shallows.  They are spawning right now on the banks.  The walleye are starting to spawn.  Some guys went up toward Crooked Creek  and Duck Creek and the winners were near the dam.  Guys are chasing lake trout and pulling cranks at 20 feet.  The bass are not aggressive and are moving into the shallows.“

Marina is open 7 days a week, 7 am to 6 pm.  ­­­­­­­

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

Haley  reports, “ Walleye and pike are being found in the shallows of the bays.  They are jigging for them.  In the bays the water temperature has been 40 degrees or more.  The fishing has been good for northern pike and walleye.   The guys are finding lake trout at the face of the dam and using cranks.  For walleye and pike they are towards shore and they are using a sucker minnow to catch them.  They are coming in to the shallows as well but they are finding them further into the bays.

You can call us at 406-526-3442 for details. “

  Our hours are   7am-6 pm Monday through Sunday.

Fort Peck Marina  Jessica & Scott Collinsworth   1-406-565-6283

Thursday, Friday and Monday  noon to 1 pm / Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 10 pm We will be closed Tuesday and Wednesday.

   Scott says, “The fishing on the weekend was phenomenal.  Some really nice walleye.  The water temperature was in the 40’s.  The lake trout bite was very good as well.  Guys were using jigs and minnows trolling spoons.  The walleye were in the shallows.  Today (Tuesday) my friends and I were out for 12 hours we did not catch a walleye or lake trout.  We could not even mark any.  We caught zero absolutely zero of them.  We caught a couple of pike.  They were in the shallows.  It was crazy after the weekend so they are moving.    “

We have lots of items at  the bait and tackle store. We have plenty of bait and minnows.   We also have campsites available with power for anyone that wants to bring your camper to the lake. The spots are concrete and right on the lake shore. You can access the lake right from your camper. If you need a  fishing license renewed you can  do it at the marina.

 Cooney Reservoir – Marina Matheson. Shauni, Cynthia  

Marina says, “Fishing was good this week.  The bite is on people are saying.  Fishermen are catching walleye. They are using a night crawler or a spoon jig.  The water in the campgrounds is not on and neither are the docks yet.  All the campgrounds are open.  Please remember dogs are welcome at Cooney but remember your leashes.”

The fish cleaning station is still open.  Our electricity  is on year around.

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

People are catching  some fish.  Guys say it is slow  catching  right now but  the water is warming up.

 Deadmans Tony Stefani/ Pat  

Pat says,”  things have thawed to the shore but it is muddy.  We  saw a couple of  guys in boats out there. They seemed to be checking their boats out.  The ramp is open but the dock is not in yet.  Things are definitely muddy and may be more so if we get the rain they say is coming.”

 Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner bar Lavina 406-636-2261

 Terry explains, “  A couple of guys said they  went to Deadmans but said it was slow fishing from shore.

 I also talked to a couple of guys  who went to Fort Peck.  They caught a  northern pike.”

Checkerboard Inn   Checkerboard, MT   Rick and Judy Geordge  406-572-3373

 Judy says, “some people fished Bair and did not do too bad.   The shore is muddy. There still is a little ice out there.

  A few people went to Sutherland and did so, so fishing.  There is water going over the spillway.  ”

Sports Center 120 2nd Ave South Lewistown, MT   535-9308  Colby / John Tognetti

Our hours are 8am to 6pm Monday to Saturday and 10 am to 4pm on Sunday

Colby  reports , “Our Grand Opening will be  this Saturday, April 27th  in our new building.  There will be free lunch  and beer. We will have a 10 % discount storewide.  Bring your rod, one per person and get a free spool of line for your pole. We will have multiple giveaways as well.    There will be boats to look at in the lot as well.  Also some prizes to win.  Come and enjoy the excitement.

Spring Creek – At Spring Creek  the water is clear. It is fishing well. Guys are using large streamers.

Achley-  Trout fishing has been good guys say.  People are catching an occasional  Muskie from shore.

On the East Fork and Hanson Dam I saw it wasn’t open on the edges yet on Sunday.

On the Missouri it is muddy and some cats have been caught.

Crooked Creek-  Guys went out in boats at Crooked  Creek.  Some guys caught catfish and pike.  The pike bite slows when it is cloudy and if the weather is sunny it is good.

Hell Creek-  At Hell Creek the Tough Guy winners got 37 pounds to win. ”

We do have smelt, worms, meal worms, maggots, minnows and wax worms.

Crooked Creek Marina Winnett, Montana   James  (Slim) and Abbie Craig, Carri Craig   406-429-2999 

Our hours will be 7 am to 7 pm daily.

Slim says,  “ The marina will be open this Friday. We  are  happy to be here for  you again.  We are busy getting things ready for the 27th.

The water is open.  The fishing off the bank guys have said is really  good for pike and cats.  It has been muddy and they have been using smelt and cut bait.  There have been some boats going out.  Fishing was slow with only a few walleye caught.  As far as the road conditions.  The Ballatine and Dove Roads are good.  The Crooked Creek Road is washboard and rough.  I am hoping they will grade it soon.

The Crooked Creek walleye Classic Fishing Tournament is on May 5th and 6th.  It is part of the Walleye Circuit.  It has a 75 team cap and as of right now I have 2  entries  open  so it has  filled up.  Call the Marina or my number to sign up.”

 When you can get to Crooked Creek  I suggest you bring minnows if you have them.   I do have some bait but not a lot so I suggest people bring some.

 If you have questions call Slim at 406-366-6313 and leave a message.

 Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon    46-266-3100

Sharon   says,” some walleye are being caught.  Some fishermen  have done well but they seem to be the experienced fishermen.  For the everyday fishermen the catching is medium.  The trout caught have been nice trout. The water temperature in the bay is 56 degrees.  The water is cloudy and you can see a mud line far out.  With the water coming in be very cautious looking for floating degree.  There have been a few railroad ties.    The best thing to do is  call if you want to get information.. ”

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

The Flamingo is closed right now.

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

Jim  reports,”  Nelson has been slow fishing.  They have been catching northern pike, bass and some small walleye.  The surface water temperature on the main  is 46 degrees and 52 degrees on the west end.

 Forchette has open water.  It has stained water.  The person I spoke to did not do very well fishing.  I have heard it was low. “

Don’t forget you do need a new fishing license now.  It expired  March 1st.”

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

 Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt 

Jayce reports, “

Stillwater- I fished the  Stillwater twice this week.  It  has opened up. We were fly fishing and it was good.  We caught rainbow trout and brook trout.   We were using a sili worm and a wire worm.  The lower  Stillwater is a little stained.

Tongue-On Tongue the water is wide open but the water is still cold.   Fishing has been slow this past weekend. Someone did catch a nice big bass this past weekend.

Cooney- People tell me they have shore fished and boat fished.  They were catching a few walleye using cranks from the boat minnow and catching a few fish  It sounds like it is a little better than last week.

 Crooked Creek –Guys have been catching some nice pike and catfish this past week.  Right now the water is a little muddy the guys say.    The road is rough coming in. “

Rich’s Tackle Richard  406-285-4540

Rich says,” I talked to someone who went out on Sunday to Canyon Ferry.  They said they got nothing but a few bites.  They said the water is pretty cold.  It has temperatures of 39 to 43 degrees.  They were marking fish  but nothing was biting.  They also had some rain.

  The Rivers are  open now but  muddy this week.  It looks like gruel in some places.   They are coming up.

Nelson Creek Dry Arm-  I talked to a guy who went to Nelson Creek and got a couple of pike.   “

Stillwater Anglers-Chris 406-322-4977 ,Bill, Ken, Jasmine

Chris says,”  The lower Stillwater has opened up but it is off color on the  lower part. Nymph fishing has picked up.  They say there is more dry fly action.  It is working okay.   when it is clear skies . People are seeing some  blue wings . On the upper Stillwater the guys are trying blue winged olives and a few  March browns. Try a midge pattern as well.

 The Yellowstone looks better.  It does have  color and with the rain  forecasted for the rest of the week it will probably  be more off color soon.”

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

Beau hears,” my guys and I went out fishing this  week for several days.  Fishing was a little better on the Big Horn this week.   The water is clear.  The fish are a little more active although the water is cold.    I did see more baetes and only a few fish jumping for them.  Some blue wing olives are hatching at times.  Not a lot so it is just starting.  Still  look for  a very specific deep spot.  Fish that spot. Stay there but realize there will be only so many fish there and you will have to find another one hole. If you work the holes you will catch some fish but you still have to work for them.   This week  pink  sow bugs worked. Try some baetes patterns. The water is good  for floating from the After Bay  to the Big Horn access.  ”

Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375   

“Rick reports, “  fishing was better this week.  The water is warming up more at 3 mile. On the upper three the dry fly fishing is better.  People are getting results dry fly fishing.  Nymphing is steady.  Try a two tone orange scud or a red blood midge or the BP3 which one of our guide’s ties.   It is crystal clear.   The water is 37  degrees on the upper third and 39 to 41 degrees on the lower portion. The fish are lethargic so they are deeper but fish are being caught.  ”

Our hours   are   8 am to 12 every day.

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

Fishes Madison River and Yellowstone National Park waters

Madison River

Nymphing has been great on the Madison.  Try fishing  a stonefly with a small mayfly below. Midges and a few blue winged olive mayflies have been hatching, The  fish will eat them on top of the water if it  is calm out.
Streamer fishing can also be good, Use dark streamers which are best to try.

 Yellowstone Park

All fishing in Yellowstone is closed until 2019.