Eastern Montana Fishing Report for the Week of 7.17.17
By angelamontana

Posted: July 20, 2017

Summer is here and with it comes sudden changes in weather and high water. Outdoor enthusiasts including fishermen need to pay attention to these changes. Flooding can happen quickly so fishermen or fisherwomen need to keep in touch with the weather service. Some water depths are at high June levels so everyone should stay alert. 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 and precipitation including snow can come on in fierce strength very fast. 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-Bill 1-406-485-2560
Monty reports, “ fishing is good. The air is a little hazy here from smoke. People are doing very, very well right now on walleye. One couple did very well doing the opposite of what we have been doing last week. They were trolling faster and deeper like 22 to 30 feet. They were using worm harnesses and a fire tiger. Chartreuse seems to be working well. They limited 4 days in a row so what they were doing was oking that is for sure.
Guys are catching bass off the docks with spinners. The water is down a bit. The clarity is pretty good. I went snorkeling and I could still see like 12 feet down. “

We are open 7 to 9 during the week and 7 to 11 on the weekend. We do have cabins for rent. Services are available .

Tongue River Reservoir /Spencer
Staff reports,” walleye fishing is slow. Pike are still being caught. . People are catching a few crappie. Hot days makes things slower. It has been 80 degrees so the water is warm. The cleaning station is fixed and open. cleaning station. Fishermen need to go deeper because of the heat. “

Tongue River Marina 1-406-757-2225 Wade, Stephanie /Warden Jordan Staley
Stephanie says,” the water temperature up to 70. The water is going down some. They are catching walleye, crappie and bass. They are just not getting as many. Fishing is just okay. The cleaning station is finally open. The bass have been good size.
My hours for July are Monday through Thursday 8 to 6 pm. Friday and Saturday the hours will be 8 to 8 pm in May. Sunday will be 8 to 5 pm.”

Hell Creek Marina- Clint Thomas-Tyler 1-406- 557-2345 Marina Matheson-Park personnel
Tyler says, “ Fishing has been not too bad. It has been a little slow but I would say fishing is decent. With the heat the fish are going deeper. Guys are heading to Sutherland towards Cooked Creek. They are catching walleye but the northern pike seem to be slower to bite. At depths of 25 to 30 foot depths. The surface water temp has been 73 degrees. Hammered brass seems to be working well. Fishing from a boat seems to be better than from shore. ”

We are open 7 days a week, 7 am to 6 pm now. ­­­­­­­
The park manager for Hell Creek State Park is Marina Matheson.

Lake Ridge Motel Eddie and Carrie Mindt 1-406-526-3597
Carrie says, “fishing has been stable this week. The air temperature has cooled off a little to 81 degrees. Walleye are biting about the same. You can catch your limit but you have to work for them. There are more eaters. They are pretty much using everything bt I know of many crawlers and leeches. Use a clean hook with a bead presentation Crawlers seem to be a little better than anything else it seems. Lake trout are just ridiculous right ow. They are heading to Sage Creek, Haksbee and at the face of the dam. The water is 70 degrees.”

We are doing guided trips. Check us out at Howes fishing. We have 4 very qualified licensed guides to serve you. We have a full line of bait, crawlers and minnows.

Our hours are now 7am to 7pm Sunday and Monday to Thursday. Friday and Saturday we are open 7 am to 7 pm. ”

Cooney Reservoir -Glennis, Mark is the game warden at Cooney.
“The weekends are very busy wi.th recreationalists. I would say that fishermen are catching walleye during the week in the early morning and late almost sunset times. Then some are catching their limits. Try a white glow mister twister is working for walleye and it is occasionally a trout or perch“, Glennis says .

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson
Lots of swimmers in the heat of the day. More swimmers than fishermen in that time of the day.. I think that is partly because of the heat we have had. There have been people fishing but early and late in the day. The fishing seems to be decent for walleye then. Use protection.

Deadmans Tony Stefani
Tony says,” If you want to fish come out in the middle of the week. I People are fishing some and catching salmon. The fish are small and soft. The water is being let out. We had lots of recreationalists here on weekends . It seems to be spill over from Cooney, You can use propane but the boss says no fires right now. .”

Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner Bar Lavina 406-636-22
Terry says, “. Fishing has been pretty slow. I think the heat is not helping. One group went to Deadmans for fish and came home without . I would say try in the early morning or late in the day. I have been hearing it is been slow fishing . I have not sold very many night crawlers so I think no one wants to go out in the heat .”

Checkerboard Inn Checkerboard, MT Rick and Judy Geordge 406-572-3373
The few people I have heard from said sometimes fishing was good. Typically this hot heat slows things down. Guys are using streamers fly fishermen especially in the evening. They were fishing like everyone does, in the cooler part of the day, early morning and late night. I talked to someone who tried at Martinsdale but did not get a lot of fish. They ere fishing from the bank with worms,“ Rick says.

Don’s Lewistown-Dale 1-800-879-8194
Scott said, “Spring Creek is crystal clear. It is fishing well with duns in the late afternoon.
Achley The tiger muskeye are being caught. They are at depths of 20 to 25 feet using cranks. They are using Husky jerks and flicker shads using a 3 way 2 ring presentation. Go deep that is where they are.
On the Missouri River between Crooked Creek and the narrows walleye fishing is narrow. The bass fishing is picking up. Cat fishing fishermen are doing wel in the Crooked Creek area. The walleye and the carp are picking up.
The local ponds are also doing well. Use a jerk bait or frogs. They are working.“

Crooked Creek Crooked Creek Marina Craig and Abby James 406-429-2999
Abby says, “ Fishing is good here. Guys are getting their limits. They are catching walleye, northerns, bass and crappie. Most are using a jig with a plastic worm tail. The walleye have been shallow. Mostly in depths of 5 to 10 feet. Purple and pink are the hot colors this week. I have heard some green and yellow are working. Most of the fish are eater size. We are having some smoky haze. I don’t know where it is coming from. I don’t know of any fires here”

The Marina’s hours are Monday to Thursday 7 am to 7pm and Friday to Sunday 6am to 9pm
There is full service at the Marina with non-ethanol fuel, bait, minnows, worms, leaches and fishing lures. We also have some rods and reels. There are cabins to rent. We hope to be open year round.

Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon
“ Fishing was still good this week. The walleye fish they are catching are 14 to 18 inch size. The have been catching some surprisingly nice perch. Some pike are also being caught. The air has some smoke but it is not terrible, it is tolerable. The guys seem to be heading to the ponds to catch fish ,“ Sharon tells us.

They have set up an inspection station at the landing. Every boat will be inspected when they come out of the water. It is halfway between the landing and the highway. The live well needs to be empty of water. The plug needs to be removed and the live well needs to be wiped down. We do have plenty of bait here. They are now setting up a water cleaning station up from the ramp. The Marina is open. Hours are 7 am to 7 pm.

West Side Sports Jim Mayer 1-406-654-1611
Jim says,” At Forchette people are catching a few more small mouth. They are also catching walleye and pike.
Nelson is still good fishing. The water is down. The walleye are are 18 to 20 inchers. Lots of nice eaters. Look for the submeraged islands and humps under the water. Go deep. Guys are catching walleye, perch , and some small mouth.
I went to Fort Peck this week. Fishing was not good. We kept 3 fish all day. We weer on the main lake toward the pines. We did not get any fish at the pines. We did get lake trout and one person got 3 salmon on Sunday so they are starting. “

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

Billings-Scheels John Cooper, Dan
Jayce says ,” On the Yellowstone river towards billings and Huntley. The water is clearer but still high. I know of guys in their jet boat that have good luck getting catfish. being caught.

Cooney: Cooney is still good fishing from boat and from shore in the evening, They are doing pretty well on cranks.
Stillwater:On the Stillwater people are saying the fly fishing is good and has gotten bettter.
Tongue-On Ttongue I am hearing fishing is about the same. They are catching some nice large mouth bass in the trees by boat. Crappie fishing is alright. It is a little muddy they tell me.
Yellowtail: On Yellowtail guys are catching small mouth. Use a Wacky worm Senko. They are getting good luck with them. Sometimes the orang colors are working well. One of our guys was trolling using a Flicker Shad and getting some nice brown trout. ”

Rich’s Tackle Richard 406-285-4540
Rich says, “Canyon Ferry: I am hearing that Canyon Ferry is decent fishing. Lots of eater size walleye although they say they are on the smaller side right now.
Holter: Guys are telling me they are catching quite a few perch, some walleye and rainbow trout. Try using crawlers they seem to be working. They are jigging but it is kind of weedy. Try a hammered color lure.
The rivers are getting real low for this time of year. The West Gallatin is the lowest. People are using hammered brass and copper, Thomas Cyclone, which is working. On the Madison they are fishing with flies and spinner baits like the Panther Martins and catching some..”

Stillwater Anglers-Chris 406-322-4977
Chris says, “ The Upper Stillwater is fishing well. It is better and clear. The flow has declined. Use big droppers. The water temperature is still good. For nymphing try a Copper John, a Phesant Tail or a Batman. For dries try a small purple haze. You have to be consistent with a PMX extractor fly or stimulator. For a sstreamer use a Grinch or a classic Wooly Bugger.
The Yellowstone is getting better. I have one guide doing the Yellowstone for one of the first times today so we will have to wait to hear how he did, .“

Montana Adventures and Angling in Fort Smith Beau McFadyean 406-855-3612
Beau says,” I am now on the Big Horn. The water is about 9500 cfs on the Big Horn. The ater is very murky and grassy. The water is really warm and the trout are pretty lethargic. There is a tricot hatch that we are seeing in the early morning. The water is 65 degrees. It is real warm. By 3 or 4 it is just real hot. Try worms and sow bugs but sometimes they are not working real well. In talking to others this is the worst we have seen fishing. Usually we see these conditions in late August so we are concerned. It is just too early for these conditions. ”

Steven Caldwell guide,
Steven says,” Try nymphing it is good all day. Mayflies like an s & m or bit hooker ae great with a zebra midge short, medium and deep is all good.
Dries- Tricos are here. Get out your Griffiths gnats and any other impossible to see tiny black thing. For the tricot bite make sure your cast is perfect and they’ll take it.
Get out early during the heat. Make sure you stay hydrated if you feel strange get off the river. Heat exhaustion or heat stoke are bad, pay attention to your body. If you think it is hot so do the fish , treat them with care. If they come unhooked before the net that’s a bonus! Keep em wet.

Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375

Donna says,” Fishing is the same, it is good. The water is at 9500 cfs. We are seeing tricot hatches and mayflies in the early morning.
Nymph fishing is fair. Try a sunken tricot pattern or the sow bug. The black caddis pupa is also working.
Streamer fishing is still good. It is best from 6 am to 10am and 6 pm to 10 pm. You can do well then.
On hot days nymphing is really slow. The water has a green look. Try a black caddis in the evening. Mosquitos are out. Use your repellent.”

Our normal hours are we are closed Sunday and Monday. We are open 9 am to 2 pm now Tuesday to Saturday.

Riverside Anglers in West Yellowstone : Alice Owsley, fishing guide and outfitter 406-640-1698
Alice says,” Madison River: We are still seeing Pale Morning Duns in the mornings on the upper Madison. There are caddis and small olive stoneflies bringing up fish until the sun is high in the sky. Nymphing continues to produce fish from the deepest runs. Stay cool and keep those fish wet, minimize their time in the air.

Yellowstone National Park
Alice says, “The Yellowstone River above the Grand Canyon opened to fishing last week and continues to be high and swift. Salmonflies have moved up through the lower canyons. Other high elevation rivers are still quite high from continued snowmelt in the high country. A few hatches are being seen on Slough Creek and fishing should continue to improve. This is the time of year to concentrate on the higher elevation streams and leave the Firehole, Gibbon and Madison river trout alone unitl Fall. Where ever you go fishing, carry your bear spray!!”