Central to Eastern MT Fishing Report 7.31.19
By angelamontana

Posted: August 1, 2019

Summer is here. This year we are still having very unusual weather and that means sudden changes in weather and water. 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 and let others know where they are for safety sake when out and about. 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 with fierce strength. 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- Monty LeTexier , Wyatt 1-406-230-1283 for Linda

Marina number is less reliable in winter. 1-406-485-2560

Monty reports,” the fishing was dog gone good week. The fish were at depth of 30 feet. I saw one group that caught 13 pike with three good size ones. The walleye were at 20 feet depths. Someone caught 20 walleye and a couple of pike as well. Many people were using cranks. Purple lures were working. We did have a lot of people here this week. If you find the right spot you can find the fish. The water has gone down 6 boards on the dock and is clearer. Fish were being caught heading south of Rock Creek flats. ”

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

Raymond reports, ” It was another hot week for people. The fishing was a little better this week. The top water temperature was 76 degrees this week. The water has gone down 6 inches. The water elevation is 3426.9 right now. People are finding mostly walleye and some bass. walleye in the shallows. They caught few northern pike. I have heard only 2 crappies being caught at the dam. The water is not going over the spillway now. It is going to be a really hot week and so make sure you hydrate.”

**The reservation system is now in effect . We are part of a new pilot program that allows you to make a reservation one day ahead. We are hoping that this brings in people who have been unable to use the campground on short notice. Other spots like Campers Point, Sandpoint, Peewee, Rattlesnake, Peewee North, and River view below the dam are open to first come, first serve. They have no electrical. The docks are in.

Remember to check your regulations for the information for this region about what minnows you may use on Tongue. .

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

Fletcher reports , “The water temperature has been around 80 degrees on the top water. Fishing has been decent. I have seen people limit out on walleye. I have seen more walleye and northern pike caught. The weather was starting to get hot. We saw a few people get walleye. People caught some trolling on a jig. The northern pike seem to be picking up. They told me mostly in in 8 to 15 feet of water moving really slow with a worm or a minnow. We are all trying to figure out where the crappies are. It is finally calm, and the water is clearing so maybe the crappies will show up. “

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

Clint reports, ”Fishing has pretty much stayed the same this week. They seem to be shallow at 2 to 8 feet and chasing them right up to the bank using a minnow works in the morning. After noon they are in depths of 12 to 15 feet depths. The Hell Creek Tournament is this weekend. There are still openings. Call Reed or Casey Thomas at the meat packing plant to sign up. The walleye have been good weights. They have been found all over. The bite has slowed down on the upper end. From Hell Creek to the dam the fishing has been really good. The fish are going for silver and blue and blue and white right now. The road with the rain is in surprisingly good shape. Guys are catching small northern pike there and the bigger northerns were in 12 to 20 feet depths. The bass seem to be in depths of 20 feet, so they are deep. Pitch a jig with a crawler or Rapella for them. ”

Hell Creek Marina is open 7 days a week. ­­­­­­­

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

Jamie reports, “ the walleye seem to be in more shallow water. You find them in 15 to 20 feet depths toward Hacksbee. Fishing has been good. People are finding a few salmon at depths of 80 to 120 feet near the dam and Duck Creek. The lake trout are being found deep at 70 to 105 feet depths. They are jigging or using down riggers. The water is around 70 degrees. Cranks with a worm or a leech. “

We have gotten in some really nice minnows and many kinds. I have fat ones, sucker minnows and also shiner minnows. I also have jumbo leaches and crawlers. All We can cover all your needs and if you want to charter a boat, we can help with that too. Our hours are 7am-6 pm Monday through Sunday.

Fort Peck Marina Jessica & Scott Collinsworth 1-406-565-6283

Thursday, Friday and Monday 9am to noon/ Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 9pm

Scott reports, “ We fished the Hell Creek tournament. The fishing was good. We caught lots but just not just the right fish to win. They had started to move deep those day. We were using bottom bouncers with crawlers.

Here the walleye fishing was pretty good. Getting lots of eaters. We are hearing a lot of reports that the northern pike are being caught. People caught some really big ones with the average 15 to 18 feet depths. Pulling cranks is working. The bass bite continues to be a good bite. The water temperature has been 73 to 74 degrees. Lake trout have also continued to be good. Some salmon have started to be caught. I know of 25 over the past weekend. They have been at 65 to 95 feet depths. I think we are about 2 weeks behind. “

The bait and tackle store are open Thursday thru Monday, and we have everything you need for chasing fish on Fort Peck. We also have campsites available with power for anyone that wants to bring your camper to the lake. The spots are on concrete and right on the lake shore. You can access the lake right from your camper. “

Cooney Reservoir – Marina Matheson. Shauni, Cynthia, Jake

Cynthia reports,” The water is down. The Marshal Cove campground is now open for use. The fishing has been good. It has not been slow. The water is no longer over the spillway since last Wednesday. The walleye fishing has been good. I have seen lots of walleye being caught. We have seen limits of walleye caught. Try using a Rapella jig wrap in a green, yellow and white. We have not seen trout being caught. .

Please help keep the big fish in the water for breeding by releasing them. Remember, your dogs are welcome but don’t forget your leash.”

Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

Bob reports, “With all of the heat and activity (swimming, canoes, paddleboards, etc.) fishing has slowed considerably at Lake Elmo with most people catching fish really early and really late in the day. Best combo seems to be a worm on a bobber and patience.

With the heat, windy and dry conditions people need to be aware of fire danger. We hope you will use high caution as we advise to help prevent any fires. ”

Deadmans Tony Stefani/ Pat

Tony says,” Lots of people out at Deadmans on the weekend. A lot of jet skiers. We are seeing the overflow from Cooney. During the week we are seeing boats fishing. I know they are trolling out there and I do know of someone caught a trout.

Every time we drive by people are still catching fish at Broadview pond. The people seem to be there from early morning to noon probably to beat the heat. . The campgrounds are all open.

The water way is up about 1 foot. It is clear.”

Deadmans/Martinsdale Cozy Corner bar Lavina 406-636-2261

Terry says, “ I talked to some guys who said they went to Deadmans and got a few trout. The place has recreational boaters there on the weekend. They thought it had picked up a little.

People are still fishing at Broadview pond. It seems to be busy early morning and almost at dark. They seem to be catching.“

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

Rick says,” people say fishing was good at Bair this week. They said they were fishing from shore using marshmallows and worms. Others said the fished Martinsdale and caught but the fishing was not as good as Bair. At Sutherlan they tried to fish but got blown off because of a storm. ”

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

Our hours are 8am to 6pm Monday to Saturday and 10 am to 4pm on Sunday

John reports , “Spring Creek- Spring Creek is fishing well. The grasshoppers are just starting to work.

Judith River- The Judith is working with grasshoppers and Panther Martens and they are catching fish there.

Casino Creek- Fish in the evening for the best results. Guys are catching 10 to 12-inch rainbow trout. Fish right at the shoreline at night. The panther martin is working best. Also try a black knat.

East Fork- The east Fork has a good perch bite. They are catching on both flies and night crawlers on a spin rod.

Crooked Creek- fishing has been fabulous. It has been real good fishing. They are catching walleye, northern pike and crappies.

In the past week people were catching fish at Crooked Creek. They are catching walleye with a worm harness’. Some are coming back doing well and some are not doing as well. You have to find them to catch them.

Achley- At Achley the fishing is productive at morning or right at dark. . Hear some are catching some tiger muskies with panther martins. The muskies killer Mepps lure is working right now.

Crystal Lake- Fishermen have been catching trout on Crystal Lake. “

We do have smelt, worms, meal worms, maggots and wax worms. We have live minnows.

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

Carri says, “fishing has been unbelievable. It just hasn’t slowed down. We had to pull the dock out because the water has really gone up. So I have been bringing the trailers down for the guys to pull their boats out. There is no shoreline right now. The fish are biting on everything. They are catching nice walleye which are 16 to 29 inchers. You do not have to go far from Crooked Creek to catch them. You don’t have to travel. Use a bottom bouncer at 5 to 14 feet. Use any color, they all seem to work. It has been wonderful. The pike are starting to bite. We found the pike at depths of 5 feet. People are catching a ton of crappies. You can catch walleye, drum, pike, crappies and, oh, cats as well. We have had very little wind. Leaches and night crawlers are working. The water temperature is 74 degrees.”

When you come to Crooked Creek, I suggest you bring minnows if you have them. I do have some bait but not a lot, so I suggest people bring minnows.

The campground and marina are open 7am to 7 pm every day. If you have questions call Slim at 406-366-6313 and leave a message.

Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon

The Camp-mak-a-dream walleye benefit is August 10th at Canyon Ferry. You can register on Friday at Canyon Ferry from August 7th to August 9th or you may call Carol at 406-633-2598 for information. All are welcome. Sharon has applications at the Silos as well.

Sharon says,” people are catching walleye on Canyon ferry. Fishing has been very good. You can find walleye pretty much all over. They are finding the walleye that are there to be 14 to 18 inches in size. I have been sending people south to the ponds where the walleye are in the shallows. The trout fishing is very good and especially going north towards the Hole in the wall.

They are at depths of 25 to 30 feet depths. The perch fishing has been good pretty much all over. Use bottom bouncers with bright colors ”.

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

The Flamingo is closed.

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

Jim reports,” Nelson is still good fishing. Both Nelson and Forchette have been great fishing. It has been good for three weeks in a row. The bite for walleye on Nelson is good. Walleye have been at 17 to 28 feet. They are catching some perch. The perch are at depths of 35 feet depths. Try using worm harnesses and leeches as they are working. The water levels are staying the same. Bring your mosquito repellent. ”

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

Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt

Jayce reports, “

Stillwater- The water on the Stillwater is down. I hear it is fishing better every day. They are catching nice trout. People are rafting the Stillwater. The water is clearer the higher up you go.

Fort Peck – At the dam guys are catching nice lake trout. Many people are using slashers and down- rigging.. They are finding nice lake trout in size. There are reports of a few salmon late this week. It is about time. Try bottom bouncers for them.

Tongue – The Tongue River continues to be slow guys have said. It just has not been a consistent bite.

Petrolia-I had a guy come in just now to buy minnows for Petrolia. He had heard there were some people catching.

Yellowstone- At Hysham , the clarity is to depths of 4 feet. They have caught some cats. The water is up. If you can get into a fast channel you will catch cats. Use a minnow or cut bait. They are catching

Cooney- I am hearing guys are catching walleye. Some were catching with cranks from a boat and catching walleye. The heat is affecting the fishing. I hear it is pretty good early in the day and just before dark.

Yellowtail- People are saying Yellowtail has lots of logs floating in it. You need to be really careful. They say they are catching small bass. They were jigging. They also caught a couple of walleyes. “

Rich’s Tackle Richard 406-285-4540

Rich tells me, “ I am hearing Fort Peck is fishing well.

Canyon Ferry- People at Canyon Ferry are catching walleye. They say the fishing was pretty good. Not a lot of big ones but they are catching. The water is high. They are catching northern pike .

Nelson- I am hearing Nelson is good fishing right now.

Rivers- The Jefferson and the Gallatin are down. On the rivers they are catching nice trout fly fishing. They are clear.

Harrison-I have heard Harrison is doing pretty well. They are catching rainbow trout, brown trout and a few Kokanee. ”

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

Nicole states,” The Yellowstone is looking better. We figure by the end of next week it should look really good. We think it will keep coming down. Throw some big streamers like a grinch or a sparkle minnow. You could try a sculpine or a chubbie. Red and purple are the colors to use. Use a dropper nymph below it . On the Stillwater try a Jack Cabe, or a royal. Try the Caddis and Purple Haze especially in red. The water is clear and up some. The water is getting bony so if you are going to float it do it in the next week in the area from Nye to the Johnson. It will not be good in a short time. If you are not familiar with the Stillwater make sure you are very careful at the Beartooth Rock drop it can be dangerous,

On the Boulder use a fish stimulator or anything in yellow or orange. The Jake Cabe in gold or tan.“

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

Fishing action at this time is happening between 9 and 3 pm. People are catching fish. It has improved. There are things happening on the water. There are caddis hatching. You will also see some PMD’s as well. There are a few small Yellow Sally’s on the river coming out now. The water is high. Wade fishing is not possible right now. Nymphing right now is okay. Dry fly fishing is your best option. Try a few streamers they should work. The water quality is clear. “

Big Horn Trout Shop Fort Smith 666-2375 Rick/Stephanie/

“Rick says, “people are liking the fishing right now. The CFS is at 5500. The water is clear. It is running nice with no moss yet. We are seeing black caddis in the evening. The tricot are starting in the morning. Even the hoppers are picking up. Try a terrestrial , a royal or a stimulator in orange or yellow. There are not many yellow Sally out right now. PMD’s are not working. Try a nymph caddis pupa or various worm patterns.

The lake is doing really good for carp and especially for worm patterns. ”

Our hours are 8 am to 12 every day.

Madison River Outfitters- West Yellowstone – Tom Forsberg. Open 730am-9pm 406-646-9644.
West Yellowstone Area Fishing Report 7/30/19


Upper Madison: After being spoiled with pretty fantastic fishing over the last few weeks, fishing on the Madison has slowed somewhat over the last week or so. Many of the hatches have run their course and the fish have seen a lot of pressure thus far. That being said, we are still having some great days on the water. and the intermittent cloud cover and storms we have been getting lately have been helping the fishing as well. Prospecting with some smaller caddis, epeorus, yellow sally, PMD and attractor patterns has been working pretty well throughout the day and it’s getting to be about that time where some smaller terrestrials such as ants could be worth trying. We might be just a little way out for hopper time yet. As for the nymphing, smaller patterns (size 16-18) have been most productive.

Flies: #14 Full-tilt Sally, #16-18 X-Caddis, #18 PMD Sparkle Dun, #12-14 Royal Trude, #14-16 Arrick’s Ant, #16-18 Rusty Spinner, #16-18 Purple Parachute, #14-16 Lake Prince, #16-18 Shop Vac, #16 Red Neck, #16-18 Green/Black Lightning Bug, #16-18 Guide Dip/$3 Dip, #16-18 Krystal Dip, #16-18 Soft Hackle Hare’s Ear

Hebgen: Fishing on the lake is starting to get rolling slowly but surely. More mornings than not we are seeing good numbers of callibaetis with fish rising to them. Things should only keep getting better from here on out. If things are slow, suspending a Turkey Calllibaetis either under and indicator or under a dry fly is a good option.

Flies: #14-16 Turkey Callibaetis, #16 Callibaetis Parachute, #16 Callibaetis Sparkle Dun, #16 Callibaetis Cripple

Gallatin: The Gallatin continues to fish well with caddis, PMD’s and attractor patterns. With the afternoon storms we have been getting and could see more of in the next few days, the Taylor Fork could be kicking in some muddy water throughout the week. Also, when it’s running clear, Taylor Fork itself is a very fun little stream to fish.

Flies: #12 Chili Dog, #14-16 Lime/Royal Trude, #12-16 Parawulff, #14 409, #8-12 Royal/Peacock/Golden Chubby Chernobyl, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #14 Full-Tilt Sally, #16-18 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16-18 Rusty Spinner

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone above the Falls: The water levels here continue to drop each day and are almost running average for this time of year now. A good selection of golden stone, drakes, PMD’s and caddis should have you covered.

Flies: #8-12 Salmon/Golden Cubby Chernobyl, #12 Chutes Green Drake, #12 Missing Link Green Drake, #14-16 Missing Link, #16 D.O.A. PMD Cripple, #16 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #12-16 Rusty Spinner

NE Corner: Fishing has been picking up nicely on Slough, Soda Butte and Lamar and all three are fishing well. Drakes, PMD’s and caddis will all fish well along with some terrestrial and attractor patterns. Take a peek at the Lamar river gauge before heading over as some of these forecasted thunderstorms could blow out Soda Butte and Lamar intermittently during the week. When Soda Butte and Lamar are running off color, give Slough a try as it usually runs much clearer.

Flies: #12-16 Royal Trude, #12-16 Parawulff Adams, #12 Missing Link Green Drake, #14-16 Missing Link, #16 PMD Sparkle Dun, #16 D.O.A. PMD Cripple, #16 Tan X-Caddis, #14 409, #12 Quill JIg, #12 Lucent Jig, #16 Olive Biot Czech