Winter Fishing Report: Lake Koocanusa
By Kjel

Posted: February 6, 2012

Now that the water temperature has reached its coldest, 37 degrees, the big fish come out to play. This is the time of year when we seem to catch our biggest Dollies, and the Rainbows all seem to be bigger.  We’re not catching as many fish as in the fall, but all fish are quality fish at this time of year. Because the temperature has cooled down, it means the fish have slowed down. That means it’s time to slow down your presentation. So, our speeds now have slowed to 1.8 – 2.5 mph. That doesn’t mean the fishing has slowed down, it just means that we can’t cover as much water as the faster speeds, which in turn means fewer fish. The lake has some ice floating around so keep our eyes open.  However, the trade off can be worth it. Rainbows up to 15 Lbs and Dollies up to 17 Lbs have been caught. Just keep fishing and put in your time. The fishing pressure is light this time of year. The boat ramp and the road to the ramp are free of snow and ice.  We’re still catching fish on the surface and down deep. Seem to see most of the fish stacked up in the 15 to 50’ depths. However, when they decide to feed, it seems to happen more on the surface. So, you definitely need to mix it up a bit.

What are they biting on???

The fish are still scattered throughout the water column, so we are fishing both on the surface and down deeper. Bucktail flies on the surface in the usual colors are working well. Blk/wht, Grey/wht, Purple/wht are working well. Also we’ve been using the downriggers for both Rainbows and Dolly Varden (Bull Trout). Some of our best depths have been 10 to 60’. We’ve been using our favorite Lyman plugs #’s 10, 16, 32, 100, and 160 have producing some good fish.

The water temperature is around 37 degrees, so remember, slower fishing but bigger fish.  Some of our biggest fish should be caught in the next couple of months!

Winter is here, so Let’s Go Fishing

Nothing makes a fish bigger than almost being caught

This report is from Captain Bob Orsua, of Mo Fisch Charters.  Visit their website at, of call (406) 755-4414.



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