Central to Eastern MT Fishing Report 8.14.19
By angelamontana

Posted: August 15, 2019

Summer is here. This year we are still having very unusual weather and that means sudden changes in weather and water. 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 1-406-230-1283 for Linda

Marina number is less reliable in winter. 1-406-485-2560

Linda reports,” we had the kids’ tournament and they caught fish. My granddaughter got first place for her catch. On Sunday some fishermen got 8 big walleyes. The biggest was 11 pounds 8 ounces. The fishing was good this week. My son and two grandkids ages 4 and 8 years old went out and got five huge pike on Thursday. They were using cranks. My granddaughter said they used a big fat bobby gray and black bait. They also used a double-jointed green tiger. They caught lots of bass. I was surprised they could pull them in. The walleye were at 20 feet depths. Some nice walleye have been caught. Many people were using cranks. Purple lures were working. ”

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

Raymond reports, ” We had a fair number of storms this week. The fishing was a little better people say this week. I saw people who were catching a few more walleye this week. They were catching some below the dam. Fishermen said they are using leaches and jigging at 10 feet depths. They seem to be heading toward the south. People say the small mouth bass seem to be in the shallows, so fishermen were both using a boat or fishing from shore. I saw some nice pike caught. He got it off Rattlesnake. The water temperature is 76 to 78 degrees. The water is up 6 to 9 inches from what it was from last year. ”

**The reservation system is now in effect . We are part of a new pilot program that allows you to make a reservation one day ahead. We are hoping that this brings in people who have been unable to use the campground on short notice. Other spots like Campers Point, Sandpoint, Peewee, Rattlesnake, Peewee North, and River view below the dam are open to first come, first serve. They have no electrical. The docks are in.

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, Fletcher /Warden Jordan Staley

Fletcher reports , “ Fishing has been mostly slow. There were people catching bass this week. I saw bass caught in all sizes and shapes. Mostly 3 to 4-pound sizes and then also some tiny ones. The weather probably had something to do with this . People have been using bottom bouncers to catch a few crappies at 25 to 20 feet depths. I have seen more northern pike caught. People are going south to catch them. “

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

Tyler reports, ”Fishing has been affected by two decent storms we had this week. It rained an inch this week. The low pressure seemed to slow down fishing at times this week. Before the storms people were doing really well on walleye and pike using bottom bouncers. Use bronze and black with worms and head towards Sutherland and Crooked Creek. Go to depths of 15 to 20 feet depths. People are catching lake trout and some salmon at the dam. ”

Hell Creek Marina is open 7 days a week. ­­­­­­­

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

Haley reports, “ the walleye fishing has been really good. Fishermen have been using bottom bouncers at depths of 30 to 30 feet depths. Use gold. Blue, or pink in a butterfly blade. We had some hail and rain during the week as well. The leaches are working well in the morning and crawlers later in the day. They are using cranks and pulling at 35 feet and catching walleye and pike.

People are catching lake trout toward Hacksbee on the dry arm side. They are running 100 feet down using a down rigger and dare devil spoons. Try a fire tiger or colors in blue. Silver orange, watermelon and yellow.

The salmon bite is slower. They are finding them at 130 to 150 feet down. Try brass bait and use a mountain dew with a squid, the first bite is in the morning 7 to 11 am and then it picks up again in the evening, we did see a big 28 pounder, but the average has been 18 pounds. You have to realize it is a patient bite.

We have gotten in some really nice minnows and many kinds. I have fat ones, sucker minnows and also shiner minnows. I also have jumbo leaches and crawlers. All We can cover all your needs and if you want to charter a boat, we can help with that too. Our hours are 7am-6 pm Monday through Sunday.

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

Open Thursday, Friday and Monday 9am to noon/ Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 9pm

Scott reports, “ it has been windy this week and we had some weather some days . So fishing was good at times and slower at other times. The walleye fishing was good. They are finding walleye at depths of 18 to 22 feet using a crawler rig or leaches on the main lake towards Jennings point.

Some salmon have started to be caught. One was 18 pounds another big one was caught somewhere in the 25 pounds range, but it was not weighed. The salmon are not concentrated they are scattered probably because of the weather. They have found a few near the dam. You have to put your time in. The lake trout are still at 120 feet of water. “

The bait and tackle store are open Thursday thru Monday, and we have everything you need for chasing fish on Fort Peck. We also have campsites available with power for anyone that wants to bring your camper to the lake. The spots are on concrete and right on the lake shore. You can access the lake right from your camper. “

Cooney Reservoir – Marina Matheson. Shauni, Cynthia, Jake

Jake reports,” The perch and walleye seem to be strong fishing right now. They are being caught all times of the day. I would say it slows down from 1 to 3 pm. The times to fish are early morning and late evening right now. Rapellas are really taking off especially with a minnow pattern. For perch use a worm and a hook and going real slow bouncing it along. The fish are definitely biting. I have seen some big 16-inch walleye caught. One fellow caught a nice 6 pounder and 10 pounders right at (:30 just as the light was going down. Someone caught a nice pike, a 29 incher at Marshal Cove. The park is now fully open for use. “

Please help keep the big fish in the water for breeding by releasing them. Remember, your dogs are welcome but don’t forget your leash.

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

Bob reports, “With all the rain Cooney is now full. There has been lots of recreation going on (swimming, canoes, paddleboards, etc.) on the water. Only a few fishermen fishing. I haven’t seen anyone pulling fish out.

I want to remind people the Bundy Bridge still does not have any boat access.

With the heat, windy and dry conditions people need to be aware of fire danger. We hope you will use high caution as we advise to help prevent any fires. ”

Deadmans Tony Stefani/ Pat

Lots of people were out at Deadmans on the weekend. There were plenty of people recreating. During the week we see more boats fishing. People are trolling out there and I know someone caught a trout, but fishing has been slow they say. “

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

Terry says, “ I hear Broadview Pond fishing has slowed some. It is starting to moss up. Otherwise with the storms no one was going out.“

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

Judy reports,” I only had one group that were going up and then the clouds looked bad and they changed their mind. No one else we spoke to went out. The weather was not good at times this week. ”

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

John reports , “Spring Creek- Spring Creek is good fishing right now. People are seeing caddis and grasshoppers now.

Crooked Creek- fishing was definitely good this week. It was a good crappie bite. They are catching walleye, northern pike and crappies.

Achley- At Achley the fishing has been slow. Only a few are catching some tiger muskies. “

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

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

Slim says, “ Crooked Creek will continue to be closed this week. A celebration of life will be held on Saturday, August 17th for Ron in Lewistown. I. Slim will return to Crooked Creek to manage the Marina and campsite on August 19th.

We are planning a boat procession on the 25th of August to honor my dad. Further plans are not completed yet.

In leu of honoring Ron donations can be made to the Crooked Creek Walleyes Unlimited or the Lewistown “Tough enough to wear pink” charity. ”

Our thoughts and prayers are with you all. ***

Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon

Fishing good this week. Most teams in the tournament did catch walleye. There is no smoke today. The walleye was at depths of 25 to 30 feet. People are having the best luck at mid-lake using bottom bouncers. People were also catching trout on a regular basis they said. ”.

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

The Flamingo is closed.

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

Cindy reports,” Nelson is still pretty good fishing. I talked to a couple people who caught a small northern. They also caught five nice walleyes. They used a bottom bouncer with a worm harness. The water levels are staying the same. Bring your mosquito repellent. ”

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

Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt

Jayce reports, “

Rock Creek-I went to Rock Creek last night after work. I caught brown trout with a worm. The fishing was decent. I used a copper John. It is high and clear.

Stillwater- The water on the Stillwater is down. I hear also fished the lower Stillwater the other day. I was catching nice brown trout. I used the copper Johns here also. People are rafting the Stillwater, but the boulders are poking up. So be careful as you float. The water is clearer the higher up you go.

Fort Peck – I heard reports the salmon fishing has started at Fort Peck at the dam. I heard it was sometimes good some days, but you had to work for them. . They are going to depths of 100 to 120 feet depths.

Hell Creek- The bass fishing has been good. The bass fisherman say they have been doing really well. They have caught some big ones.

Tongue – The Tongue River continues to be slow guys have said. It just has not been a consistent bite.

Cooney- Guys are using a Rapella in a size 7. People have been catching walleye pitching toward shore. They have also caught an occasional perch.

Stillwater river-Fishermen have had good results on hoppers now.

Yellowstone- West of Columbus the fishing has been good. They are using a silver spinner to catch them.

Yellowstone- I heard from some guys on the Yellowstone at Paradise Valley are catching some nice fish. I also heard from someone to fished near Park City and did very well. “

Rich’s Tackle Richard 406-285-4540

Canyon Ferry- People at Canyon Ferry are catching walleye. They say the fishing is pretty good. Not a lot of big ones but they are catching. The water is high. They are also catching northern pike .

Rivers- The Jefferson and the Gallatin are down. The rivers are getting mossy but fly fishing is still good. Spinners are hard to use.

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

Jim says,” The Stillwater river is down to 1200 cfs. Try using a Jack Cabe, PMX, stimulator and a purple haze. They have also tried a long hopper with a Copper John as well. Try a caddis pattern in the evening and a hopper earlier.

On the Yellowstone fishing is changing because of the rain. Locally the water is muddy. Try the same Jack Cabe , stimulator and PMX . You can also try the always good girdle bug. It is getting better daily.

Remember as the water warms up be careful not to stress the fish too much.”

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

The fishing on the Big Horn is fairly good. It is just starting to get murky. The hoppers are working. You can use nymphs in black or tan. There are some caddis. You do see tricot in the morning. Streamers are just not working right now. Fishing action at this time is happening between 9 and 3 pm. “

Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375 Rick/Stephanie/

Rick says, “ people are saying fishing is good right now. The CFS is still at 4000. The temperature is 57 degrees. The dries are coming on. There are tricot out in the morning. We are seeing black caddis in the evening. We have had some huge and heavy winds at times this week. The grasshoppers are being pushed in the water. Try a terrestrial , a royal or a stimulator in orange or yellow. Streamers are working just so so.

The lake is doing really good for carp and especially for worm patterns. ”

Our hours are 8 am to 12 every day.

Madison River Outfitters- West Yellowstone – Tom Forsberg. Open 730am-9pm 406-646-9644.
West Yellowstone Area Fishing Report 8/12/19


Upper Madison: Terrestrial time has come upon us in a huge way over the last few days. Our guides returned yesterday with reports of some of the best hopper fishing they have seen in their many decades of combined experience. People tend to have a few misconceptions when it comes to hopper fishing, thinking that throwing them tight to the banks on a bright and windy afternoon is the only time to try throwing hoppers, but this is not the case. While those types of conditions are ideal, hoppers and other terrestrials can fish well all throughout the day and more importantly all throughout the river, not just the banks. Some great fishing can be had off the banks and even in the middle of the river on any given day, so don’t be afraid to branch out and try some new tactics with your terrestrial fishing. Apart from the terrestrial fishing taking off, the evenings have been fishing well with a combination of caddis and rusty spinners. Nymphing with smaller flies in the 16-18 range will produce good fishing all day.

Flies: #10-12 Pink/Tan/Yellow Thunder Thighs, #10-12 Morrish Hopper, #14-16 Arrick’s Ant, #14-16 Bogus Beetle, #12-16 Royal Trude, #16-18 X-Caddis, #18 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16-18 Rusty Spinner, #16-18 Purple Parachute, #16 Lake Prince, #16-18 Shop Vac, #16-18 Red Neck, #16-18 Green/Black Lightning Bug, #16-18 Guide Dip/$3 Dip, #16-18 Krystal Dip, #16-18 Soft Hackle Hare’s Ear, #18 Zebra Midge

Hebgen: We are still waiting for consistent dry fly fishing to really pick up on the lake, but we are seeing somewhat more steady hatches of callibaetis most days. The good news is that when there have been bugs on the water the fish have been keying in on them pretty well and rising more than once, making them considerably easier to target. As always, dropping a size 16 Turkey Callibaetis a few inches under a dry or an indicator can be very effective.

Flies: #16 Callibaetis Parachute, #16 Callibaetis Sparkle Dun, #16 Callibaetis Cripple, #16 Turkey Callibaetis

Gallatin: With all the recent evening thunderstorms, the Gallatin has been muddy below Taylor Fork off and on most of the week. However, it should clear up nicely for the next few days at least as the forecast isn’t calling for any more moisture until later in the week. The park stretch has been running clear as usual. Terrestrial and attractor patterns should fish well throughout. It might be about that time of year to start throwing a spruce moth around in the more forested canyon stretch. If you can time it right, spruce moth fishing can be quite the experience. It is remarkable how crazy fish will go for these bugs.

Flies: #12 Chili Dog, #14-16 Lime/Royal Trude, #12-16 Parawulff, #14 409, #8-12 Royal/Peacock/Golden Chubby Chernobyl, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #14 Elk Hair Caddis, #14 Tan/Orange Spruce Moth, #16-18 Rusty Spinner

Yellowstone National Park

NE Corner: Nothing too much new to report here. Terrestrials, caddis, PMD’s, and a few stray drakes will provide you with plenty of action for dry fly fishing. Be sure to check the Lamar river gauge before heading over later in the week as the forecast is calling for some storms starting around Thursday.

Flies: #10-12 Pink/Tan/Yellow Thunder Thighs, #10-12 Morrish Hopper, #14-16 Arrick’s Ant, #14-16 Bogus Beetle, 12-16 Royal Trude, #12-16 Parawulff Adams, #12 Missing Link Green Drake, #14-16 Missing Link, #16 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16 D.O.A. PMD Cripple, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #14 409, #12 Quill Jig, #12 Lucent Jig, #16 Olive Biot Czech

Yellowstone above the Falls: Look for caddis, PMD’s and green drake patterns to be your best bugs. Water levels have continued to drop making it a little easier to get around. That being said, never get too comfortable wading this river. Its deceptive depth and fast current combined with its soft bottom makes for a dangerous place to wade.

Flies:#12 Chutes Green Drake, #12 Missing Link Green Drake, #14-16 Missing Link, #16 D.O.A. PMD Cripple, #16 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #12-16 Rusty Spinner