Central to Eastern Montana Fishing Report 11.20.19
By angelamontana

Posted: November 22, 2019
Fall  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 like snow and dangerous fire 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

A person  reports, the wind has been blowing  this week.  The varying weather means no one is fishing.  There is a little  ice floating from off the bank. ”

If you wish to make reservations for the 2020 summer, please call Monty at 406-465-0241.  If you wish information for winter ice fishing call me, Linda, at the Marina at 1-406-485-2560.  I check my messages fairly often and will return your call.  You can also call me on my cell phone as well 406-230-1283 to get information.   The marina is closed for the season. “

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

Raymond reports, ” we saw one boat fisherman this week.  He drove down to the ramp.  He found it was blocked by ice so he could  not get out on the water. That was last Saturday.  Since then because of the weather change the ice has melted and you can get out on the water.  That ice was very thin.   The docks are now out.  I have not seen anyone else  here this week.   The south end has  ice a third of the way.  It is very thin. I would not get on it. I see the Marina bay is making ice, but it is very , very thin.  If the weather turns colder, I suspect the ramp will freeze up again with ice, but it is open now. “

The power and water are turned off. That means the dump station and fish cleaning station are off .  Camping spots 1 to 11 have power but no water through the winter months.    Reservations  are no longer needed for the campground and it is first come first serve.

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

The marina is closed until ice fishing.

Wade  said ,“  I heard  the south end has ice  forming. The bay is forming ice by the marina. It also is not safe.  We are  just waiting for ice fishing but who knows what the weather is going to do.  ”

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

Clint reports, ” We have seen lots of hunters. The only fishermen we have seen was a pike fisherman. He was finding pike in the shallow water.  No one has been out for lakers. The last time when someone went out which was a while ago, he did well on lakers we just have not seen anyone since. That may change with the weather changing.“

Hell Creek Marina is open 7 days a week. ­­­­­­­

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

Carrie reports, “The few people going out have only gone out for lake trout.  They were finding them at 40 feet pulling  Salmo cranks.  The color purple was working well last week.  Some were trying a jig, but I have not heard if they caught the lakers  on them. The water temperature is 42 degrees.  The water is clear.  People had tried fishing for pike from shore. They caught pike but nothing outstanding .  We have had some wind and cold weather.  The most boats we are seeing are heading out to hunt farther down.“

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  Monday to Friday  11am to 9am/ Saturday and Sunday 8 am breakfast and open to 10pm  Tackle Store is open 7 am to 9pm daily

Scott  reports “

Lake trout -For the  guys out fishing the  lake trout seem to be still cooperating very well.  Cranks,  spoons and pitching jigs are all still working for the guys, Try 10 to 35 feet of water.  but in order to get them in many times I have to write it a particular way to get it in. o be the best.

Walleye- No  reports from this week.

Pike- No face to face reports from this week.  I have heard of some guys catching fish on weed lines in the backs of the bays throwing crank baits and spoons.

Smallmouth bass-No report from this week.

Have a great week.

You can also  call  us at the tackle shop for an up-to-date report if your planning a trip up to  Fort Peck. Our number is 1-406-526-3442. “

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

According to Ron Herman ,” earlier people were catching walleye out at Cooney.  Everything is weather dependent.  Most people like me have been hunting. ”   Others  say some  bank fishermen at Fisherman’s Point,  where the willow Creek comes in,  were catching a few trout. There  is  a skiff of ice in places.  It is not safe ice.

The water has been turned off now.   The electricity is also off except at Marshall Cove and Red Lodge campgrounds.  The docks are pulled. Soon we will be working on dock repairs after the pre-winter maintenance is done.    You no longer need reservations, so the camp sites are first come first serve. The kiosk has the reduced rate for camping  listed.  Remember, your dogs are welcome but don’t forget your leash.

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

Bob tells me, “ the ducks are out there fishing.  There is no ice out there right now.  We did have one kayak out on the water.  He had a pole in there, but the lake was covered with geese and the number of birds made it tough, so he left. At times the water was black from birds. “

 Deadmans Tony Stefani/ Pat  

Tony  says,  “ We  had   no one  come out  here this week.  I am sure that is because everyone is out hunting.  ”

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

Terry reports, “ I have heard nothing  this week.  People are talking hunting but not fishing. “

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

Judy reports,” Bair Lake and Sutherlan are both  frozen over. It is not thick enough yet.  We are seeing lots of hunters.”

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 , “  I have not had many people talking fishing.  Hunting is what people are talking about.

Missouri – I know that the Missouri river out here is froze up so you can’t fish there.

Spring Creek- You can fish Spring Creek but have not talked to anyone.

Achley-I have not heard anything about Achley. ”


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

The marina is open.  We are open 7 am to 7 pm every day.

Last I was told earlier this the bay was frozen but not thick yet.  There is no boating or shore fishing because the ice is not ready to step on.   The road is snow packed but passable. The wind has made drifts but not on the road in.  I suggest you call before you come so you can hear conditions.  ”

Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon

Sharon reports, “there have been some  fishermen going out this week.   They have caught a few  trout and only a few walleyes.  It is truly dependent on the weather especially the wind.  We do not have ice .  You can boat and shore fish still.  The docks have been pulled.  ”

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

The Flamingo is closed.

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

Jim reports,  “Nelson is completely locked in with ice.  It is not thick.  Only a little  on the main lake. I do know that there is 6 inches at Outhouse Bay, and some were spearing. ”

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

Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt 

Jayce  reports, “ I have not heard much from fishermen.

Yellowtail-  A few guys told me that they were jigging and caught a few sauger.

Yellowstone- On the  Yellowstone I heard from guys heading  in their jet boat toward  Hysham and Custer.    They were going for walleye and sauger jigging with a minnow.

Stillwater River- I did talk to one fly fisherman who was heading to the Stillwater. I never heard how he did.

Rich’s Tackle Richard  406-285-4540

Rich says, “I have not heard any  news on fishing.  This week the only people I  saw  this week looked at sunglasses and bought them. Maybe they were hoping for lots of sun.”

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

The weather warmed up some  for fishermen. One person  said the change  in weather made him try fishing. He was going to  try different  types of nymphs especially because some baetes were seen later in the day. They were hoping to see some  blue wing olives.

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

Beau says, “  I was hearing the water  on  the Big Horn is clearing.  People say it has improved a little. I would  use  pseudo patterns about  noon, and I heard  that the pseudos came out about 1 pm.  Using a nymph or a streamer  has improved.  People said they  were catching rainbows. Please watch for the reds as they are starting and stay off them. “

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

Rick says, “ There have been some nice baetes out there this week.  They seem to be around between one and three o’clock around 3 mile.  Today it is overcast and cloudy so I would use streamers. The water is clear. The water is 54 degrees and the cfs is 3200.  I found fishing  better.  We have heard of some nice size fish, like 20 inchers, a good size caught.  Fish deep  and use a sink tip line.  I am seeing some people using the Spey 2 handled rod.  Fish deep  and use a nymph at the bottom of the runs.  I found you have to get out of the boat to do well fishing. Stay off the reds, the browns have started.”

We are in winter  hours and are open  8 am to 12 every day.

Madison River Outfitters- West Yellowstone – Tom Forsberg.  Open 730am-9pm  406-646-9644.

 West Yellowstone Area Fishing Report 10/7/19 

No further fishing report until Spring