Central to Eastern Montana Fishing Report 9.5.18
By angelamontana

Posted: September 5, 2018

Summer is slowly winding down  and with it comes sudden changes in weather and changes in water conditions.  Outdoor enthusiasts including fishermen need to pay attention to these changes.   Storms  can   happen    quickly so fishermen or fisherwomen need to   keep in touch with the weather service. The fire season also means we all need to be alert to be actions and conditions.    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 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 by Carol Henckel)

 Rock Creek Marina- Monty LeTexier , Wyatt  1-406-485-2560

Monty   says, “ Guys are finding  walleye between here and McGuire Creek  in the weeds at 20 to 25 feet.  They have been good sizes like 29 inches, 27 inches and 19 inches.  They  say they must be hiding in the mud.    People have had bites on lake trout going north from the dam to Haxby Point.  They are at 120 feet with a downrigger at 92 to 95 feet.   The bass are going crazy off the docks.  The bass seem to be more shallow now. ”

 “Our hours are Sunday to Thursday 7 am to 9 pm.  Friday

 to Sunday 7 am to 11pm.  We are willing to open early or later than these hours depending on the need.  We are excited to get people fishing and hear their fishing stories , “Monty says.

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

Raymond   says,” It was a busy  weekend.  We had beautiful weather.  If I look at the fish cleaning station I would say fishing was fair.  Not a lot of time spent there.  The water level is 3422 cfs and the water is 69 degrees.  I would say it is a little bit  better than a month ago.  I heard of people catching  some crappies, bass and walleye.  Most were using  yellow colors with bottom bouncers. Some people said they caught 5 to 10 crappie but nothing spectacular.  Some are heading south of rattlesnake.  They are catching perch off of campers point. “    .

Tongue River Marina  1-406-757-2225 Wade, Stephanie, Greg /Warden Jordan Staley

Due to illness of the person who would report I have enlisted other general information from others.   Fishing this past weekend was okay.  People   are  catching crappies at 20 to 30 feet using cranks .  Some people are catching walleye , but not limits yet.  The walleye and bass are shallow at 5 to 12 feet.

   The   Marina is now open every day.  Our  hours are 8 to 5 Monday to Thursday  and  Friday and Saturday 7 to 9.  On Sunday we will be open   from 7 to 5 pm.

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

Layne  says, “ We had a decent weekend on fishing.  The bass are close to Hell Creek at 15 to 20 fee depths using a jig and a crawler.   Guys are not catching walleye as much.  Walleye fishing has been tough. They are trying bottom bouncers with crawlers at 20 to 30 feet.  Only a few have been caught this week.    There have been a few  northern pike . People are pitching spoons and spinners at 8 to 12 feet depths.  Ake trout are biting toward the dam at 90 to 110 feet depths.“

 The Marina is open 7 days a week, 7 am to 6 pm.  ­­­­­­­

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

Carrie   says, “  I just came back from fishing.  I caught  a big salmon and had quite a fight.  I did not land it   as I lost it right at the boat. It was a nice one and did give me a good fight.  Salmon is slow like last week it has not increased( in catches) .  We have had  some fronts come through that  has changed things. The salmon are  small ones, 2 to 8 pounds with an occasional 20 pounder .  They are at 50 to 95 feet depths over a canyon ball at 110 to 170 feet of water.  Lake trout  are great. Lots are  being caught   pulling spoons at 90 to 125 feet of water.  Use a jig or troll with a downrigger.  Quite a few people are catching walleye toward flat Lake.  They are using bottom bouncers  and a worm.  People are using rubber baits that mimics a leach. The Berkley power bait  and gulp are both working. ”

We do have minnows, suckers, fatheads, Smelt, night crawlers,  hooks, floaters, full suckers, wax and   meal worms and white and pink maggots here for the guys to use.  Our hours are   7am-6 pm Monday through Sunday. ”

Cooney Reservoir – Marina Matheson. Shauni, Cynthia

 James reports, “ The fish are not biting well.  I am out fishing  a lot.  I fish a lot at Cooney and do know what works.  I went out this week for 4  hours and did not get anything.  That is unusual  so I believe the fishing is slow. There is lots of algae on the water. I think that will change in 7 to 10 days and I believe the water  will turn over.  That will make the fishing better. We have  gained 10 feet of shore line this week. The water has lowered 15 to 20 feet.

I want to remind everyone on the leash law for Cooney,   We want everyone to enjoy their visit to Cooney. Your dog may have never bit someone but the possibility of a first time is always there,  Make sure your dog is on a leash to protect  yourself and others.   “

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

Bob says,” The weekend was busy. The water has been hammered this week from sun up to sun down.  People are catching perch and catchable rainbow trout.  The kids are using small lures with red and white stripes spoons sitting on the bottom. I talked to one kid who just put a worm on the line with no bobber who was fishing on the bottom and was catching fish.   There are a lot of kids fishing at the end of the school day…”

 Yellowstone County still has fire restrictions which will affect all fishing access sites. If you have a question call FWP for information, Please be careful.

 The Indian Fort Access at Reed point will be closed the rest of the summer.  It is restricted to walk in only.  There has been some damage to the road which has narrowed the road and is dangerous.  That has to be repaired

The East Bridge Lockwood fishing access is closed as there is   construction going on,” Bob explains

Deadmans Tony Stefani

 It was a decent fishing week.  The water is going down.  Not as many campers for fishing more there for recreation.

 Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner Bar Lavina 406-636-22

   Terry says “A lot of people did not come and tell me how the fishing was.  I sold very few worms. Not hearing   any fish are being   caught right now. ”

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

 Judy says, “At Bair I heard some people had a wonderful fishing day some days of the weekend.  Saturday was cold and windy. It was a poor day for fishing.  All I can say about Martinsdale is that it was a good weekend for wind surfers.  ”

Sports Center 120 2nd Ave South  Lewistown, MT   535-9308  Colby / John Tognetti

 John says, “Stop and see  our new  store to 120 2nd Ave. South in Lewistown.  The building is the old Don’s Sporting   Goods building. Hope to see you there.”

 John reports, “  Achley fishing is good  in the early  morning..  They are doing okay on cranks for   Muskies.  The Muskie are at 12 to 15 feet depths.

At Henson Dam guys are catching nice trout.

 Spring Creek is seeing a caddis hatch in ate pm.  It   is fishing   well using flies and spinner small . The hoppers are also working.  Use the Panther Martin,   the blue fox and the caddis fly.

There are sauger and  walleye being caught on a jig and plastic.  They are not big eater size . Try IB fishing , Twister Tails and Berkley Ripple shads.   Cats are being caught on the   Missouri right now.

 The bite is okay.  Use night crawlers or  cut bait as they are working. The weather was good this week.”

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

Carri  explains,” Lots of hunters and fisherman here this week.  Fishing started off slow on Thursday and Friday but picked up part of the day on Friday.  Someone caught some crappies, perch and lots of drum.  Saturday people caught some nice walleye.  They were 19 and 29 inches in size.  People caught cats, crappies and one boy caught a 20 pound pike.  He was using a bottom bouncer pulling a plug jig.  Monday there were a lot of crappies and walleyes caught at depths of 27 feet depths.  I saw people catch their limit.   No salmon or lake trout were caught. ”

 Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon

  Sharon   reports,”   The walleye is actually a little better.  It is now about 8 ½  up from  eight on a scale of 10.  The algae is a little less  but you can work your fishing around it.  People are catching some perch going east  as well.   People are catching walleye mostly. “

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

The Flamingo has closed for the season.

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

Jim says, “ I have heard  Nelson  is hit and miss  fishing .  They are catching walleye towards Pelican Island.  They are using bottom bouncers. .  The water is slowly going down..

 Forchette was   fishing  well  I  heard.  Cranks are working. ”

Stop by the store.  We do have minnows here if you need them.

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

 Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt

Matt   said, “The Stillwater has been fishing well.  People are using  purple haze and doing well.  They are  wading .

On  the Yellowstone by Pompeii and catfish fishing  has been good.

Yellowtail  is good fishing.  .  They are catching a ton of  small mouth bass.

I heard Tongue was steady fishing.

For fishing right now use a shiver minnow presentation.  Try using jig raps. .

Rich’s Tackle Richard  406-285-4540

  Canyon Ferry has been  good  fishing.  They are catching some walleye and nice trout. The bigger ones  are on the right of Confederate going north.  You will have  a lot you have to sort through to get some to make a meal.

 It was hard to fish the rivers this past weekend with Labor Day.   There were so many recreational floaters   the bridge at Logan had 18 vehicles.  There  were so many  that even the floaters were complaining  about the  crowding.   ”

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

Jasmine  says, “  Above the Stillwater the water is too bony to float.  It is good to wade and walk.  From Jeffrey’s Landing  down you can dry fly fish.  Try using a Jack Cabe, , PMX, and  flies in  yellow, orange and olive.

There are no hatches right now.  Use a smaller  fly  in size 14.

 The Yellowstone is clear.   It is  really good fishing right now. It is perfect for floating.   Big dries are working well  on both rivers.  On the Stillwater use a dropper with a bead head. Use a big  chubby,  a purple Haze or Jack Cabe as they  are definitely working. There are lots of hoppers.

The Yellowstone went up because of the rain.  That helps with the things floating  in the river. Pay attention to the river.   Try using a Purple Haze .  Flies and hoppers in peach and tan are  working  now.  The Indian Fort is still closed. ”

We are   open Monday to Sunday from 9 to 5 pm.”

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

Bea says,” The  Big Horn is not great fishing right now.  Sometimes it is terrible. The tricots are out in the late morning . Nymphing has a better chance of working in the morning.  Then the action just shuts down at about 2 pm.    The water is still mossy.  Try using cray fish, sow  bugs or a size 12 pheasant tail .“

Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375

Rick  reports,” There are tricots out there still  but   only in the early hours. It is slow.  Nymphing is okay.    The water is off color like brown tan.  There are a lot of   great places to wade. It is good walking access.  Streamers are picking up on the lower sections.  You have to work harder for fish.  This weekend it was pretty crowded but people enjoyed the weather. ”

Our summer hours  are   8 am to 5 every day.

Riverside Anglers in West Yellowstone : Alice Owsley, fishing guide and outfitter  406-640-1698.

Alice reports, “


Small mayfly and caddis nymphs are picking up fish throughout the day. Warm, windy days are seeing fish eating hoppers and ants. .

 Yellowstone National Park

Cool nights are keeping the fishing slow in the mornings. Once the day warms up the   fishing with terrestrials has been productive. Mayflies are also hatching on the higher elevation streams. ”