Fishing good on lakes, so-so on rivers
By Hookemharry

Posted: May 6, 2004

The month of May brings on a bunch of activity on both land and water in Montana.

Fishing has been good on the lakes and hit and miss on the rivers recently.

Bob Culp, of Frenchtown, spent a few days over at Holter Lake and reported that the trout fishing is excellent. The size of the trout has also been good, according to Culp, with catches ranging from 2 to as big as 5 pounds.

Walleye fishing still has not picked up yet, even though Culp said he talked to a an angler who caught and released a male walleye over 30 inches.

Reg Brewer, of Helena, reports that the trout fishing has been excellent on the two reservoirs above Holter. Both Hauser and Canyon Ferry Lake are producing nice limits of trout. Anglers are having equal success from boat or shore as the rainbows are still trying to spawn and working the shorelines.

Further east, over on the big pond, the walleye fishing is still fairly slow at Fort Peck, but fish are being caught. The annual Tough Guy walleye tourney took place last Saturday out Hell Creek Marina.

The tourney, which is sponsored by the Jordan Chapter of Walleyes Unlimited, had 58 teams compete. Ron and Matt Dombrovski, from Billings, took first place with 21 pounds of walleyes.

Elliott Garfield and Chris Keller from Wolf Point took second with 19 pounds and Jerome Papineau and Casey Schantz from Miles City caught 17 pounds.

“Pre-fishing (scouting before the tournament) was slow and, for the most part, the fishing was tough,” according to tourney director Joe Herbold . “Even with the fishing being slow, it took some nice one-day weights to get in the money.” The top team won $750 for their efforts.

The water is low at Fort Peck Reservoir, but that doesn’t mean you will have trouble getting your boat launched. The major ramps are currently usable and will be extended if the water continues dropping. One of the ramps at Hell Creek Marina is good for another three to four feet.

Closer to home, Wayne Knudson, “Walleye Wayne” from Florence, has been picking up some northern pike while fishing up on the Clearwater River and also on Seeley Lake. “Its been one here and two there,” says Knudson, who spends most of his time living and fishing out of his cabin in the area.