Lake Fishing is Full of Options: Captain’s Column
By angelamontana

Posted: June 13, 2013
(photo courtesy of Angela Montana)

This Sunday is Fathers Day and with the day honoring Dad approaching there will be no shortage of some of good spots on a river or lake if you want to take him fishing. As an added bonus Montana is offering a free weekend of fishing this weekend in honor of Fathers Day. A free Father’s Day weekend of fishing is a great way to get families outdoors and fishing together. All Montanans can celebrate Fathers Day this weekend June 15-16 by going fishing without a license.

The local rivers are running below normal currently. That might be bad news for fishing later this summer but good news for fishing now. With below normal flows predicted for the rest of June fishing on the rivers will improve each day forward. Your best bet will be on the upper stretches of the Clark Fork River as well as most of Rock Creek. If you find some stretches of the rivers discolored but still with good clarity then look for some slower, quieter water like back channels or just pocket runs along rip wrap banks, these should produce for you both on top and with nymphs according to

Lake fishing is full of options. Lake Mary Ronan is still producing kokanee salmon. “We caught our limit of up to 12 inch size salmon”, reported Rod Dietz of Missoula. The salmon Dietz caught were a little larger than the ones he took home a week ago from the Lake Mary Ronan. Swedish pimple with a glow hook tipped with either a maggot or raw shrimp still seems to do the trick.

Browns Lake is hit and miss for the trout. This is the time of the year where one day when you are fishing you can’t keep off your hook the next day you can’t buy a bite. Troll 2-3 colors with a leech type fly pattern for the best results. Things have slowed up at Holter Reservoir for trout and the walleye bite has not been very good either. You can still catch your limit of trout but you will have to work for them on Holter. Hauser Reservoir has been fair for trout and they have been catching some walleye in Causeway. Canyon Ferry Reservoir might be your best bet if you are looking at fishing over in the Helena area. The water level is down about 10 feet from full pool so if you are fishing on the south end be careful and watch out for sand bars. The walleye bite has been a little better but still inconsistent. “The walleyes I have been catching on the south end have been about 300-400 yards off shore on the southend of Pond 1 and 2”, reports Bob Culp from Frenchtown. Most of the fish he has been catching have been in the 13-16 inch class. Trout fishing has been good around Cemetery Island on the north end of the lake according to Steve Hellegaard from Missoula.

Angela Montana and Jason Maxwell from Missoula competed in the annual Carp shoot during the Canyon Ferry Carp Safari last weekend. The winning team of Remi Berube and Brandon Matson brought in an amazing 191 carp and won first place. 100 registered to shoot carp in the annual event sponsored by the Montana Bowhunters Association. To read more about the Carp Safari and view pictures of the contest log onto

(written by the Captain)
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