Central to Eastern Montana Fishing Report 4.1.2020
By angelamontana

Posted: April 1, 2020

Spring  is still here. The unusual weather and sudden changes in weather temperatures, ice conditions, wind  and  water mean everyone needs to be vigilant when being outside.   Outdoor enthusiasts including fishermen need to pay attention to these changes.   Storms like snow and dangerous fire 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

  Linda  reports, “  We had three fishermen this past weekend fishing off the north shore.  It got cold so the ice re froze.  You can walk on it out there . There was 8 inches.  I don’t know if they caught  anything. It is starting to break away on the edge. The north side has some ice.  The points are opening up. There is open water  at the end of the road.”

If you wish to make reservations for the 2020 summer, please call Monty at 406-465-0241.  If you wish information for winter ice fishing call me, Linda, at the Marina at 1-406-485-2560.  I check my messages fairly often and will return your call.  You can also call me on my cell phone as well 406-230-1283 to get information.   The marina is closed for the season. “

Tongue River Reservoir Raymond /Spencer/ Greg

 Spencer reports,” At this time there is no public access to  the FWP department building.  We are open for day use only right now.  The  ice  is mostly gone. We are supposed to get some snow the next three days.   The water level has definitely gone up about 3 feet.  I can see three boats out there right now.  The playground is closed.  Our docks are not in.  I have not seen any fish anyone caught, nor do I know if they caught any.

  The power and water are turned off. That means the dump station and fish cleaning station are off.  Camping spots 1 to 11 have power but no water.

 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

Wade explained, “ We have open water. You can launch a boat from the ramps.  Of course, there is only day use right now in the campground.  There are a couple of boats out there right now.

   We are still closed at this time. ”

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

  Clint reports, ”The water is still covered with ice.  I don’t think it will be long and it will be gone as long as the weather does not change. I know a couple guys fished from shore from the bank at the head of the channel.  We really have not people up here.

The Tough Guy Tournament has been canceled. “

Hell Creek Marina is open 7 days a week. ­­­­­­­

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

Haley reports, “ we still have a little bit of ice.  I know of a couple of guys with a boat going down the river.  They caught a few lakers and one northern pike.  They were using minnows and cranking.  We do have minnows.”

 We are open.  We can cover all your needs.   Our hours are   7am-6 pm Monday through Sunday.

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

Open  Monday to Friday  11am to 9am/ Saturday and Sunday 8 am breakfast and open to 10pm  Tackle Store is open 7 am to 9pm daily

 Scott  reports “  Yes we are open,  Still no fishing to report. Still too much ice but hopefully with some  wind and warm weather it will disappear quickly.  Hopefully we will get some warm weather and it will open up and we can get some fishing done.  Please stay healthy and take care.“

Stop in the bait store or give us a call 406-526-3442  for the most up to date reports and to let us help point you in the right direction for a great trip.  We have all the tackle and live bait to make your trip a successful one. “

 Cooney Reservoir – Marina Matheson. Shauni, Cynthia, Jake

Jake reports,” Yesterday and the day before people were able to catch some rainbow trout from shore.  As of today the edges are refroze from the cold temperature.  We got 1 inch of snow, but we are supposed to get even colder for the next few days, so I don’t see people fishing. It is still 90 to 95% iced over.  It is only day use here no camping.  Please remember to keep the distance of 6 feet from each other no matter where you are.”

  The water has been turned off now.   The electricity is also off except at Marshall Cove and Red Lodge campgrounds.  The docks are pulled. Remember, your dogs are welcome but don’t forget your leash. Please make sure your vehicle is being driven on the road.

 Lake Elmo FWP Bob Gibson

 Bob says,” Elmo has open water.   Many  families   have been  coming to fish probably to get a break from school at home and burn off steam. You can no longer fish from the pier because of the restrictions. The picnic areas should not be used.

The Fishing Access Sites are open.  There is no over night camping right now.  Remember to keep your distance from others. Protect yourself and others.

We have locked the doors .  We  have a few staff  working in the building. If you need a license you can get that online only. If you need a question answered call and we will try to help you.

Remember you need a new fishing license now as of March 1st and you can do it online.  ”

 Deadmans Tony Stefani/ Pat  

Pat reports,” Deadmans is now  open water.  We had one fisherman  here this week.  ”

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

 It is reported no one has seen any people because of the virus.  The bar is closed right now. “­­­­­

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

 Judy  reports,” there is not good  ice at Bair.  There is open water we heard at Martinsdale. We do not know of anyone fishing there.

 Our bar is closed at this time. ”

Cozy Corners  Terry  406-636-2261

At this time the bar is closed . Unable to get a fishing report.

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 , “  the local ponds still have ice on them.

Petrolia- I did hear that Petrolia was open.  Someone fished there.

Spring Creek- You can fish Spring Creek.  The water is muddy from the runoff.

Achley- Achley is open from shore and for boat.  People tell me  they caught a few rainbow trout. “

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

The marina is not open.  We are going to continue to be closed until the pandemic is over or I am told it is safe. Slim reports, “ People  were fishing there this past weekend and because of the small area there were way too many people there. They were fishing from shore and caught a few pike.  No matter where you fish you need to follow the 6 feet rule to protect everyone.

I continue to be closed. The marina will be closed so there will be no services like bait or fuel.    You will not be able to rent cabins.  I will let you know when things change, and I open.”

Silos Canyon Ferry-Sharon 

Sharon reports,” we are open.  I would suggest you call for information.  The banks are open.  The water is open.  The trout fishing has been good.  The docks are in.  You can get on the water .  Please remember the 8-foot distance ruling when you come.”

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

The Flamingo is closed.

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

Dan reports,  “ My shop is closed permanently .  The inventory will be sold off later.”

Billings-Scheels Jayce, Tanner, Matt 

Jayce reports he has heard and knows, “Yellowstone- I talked to someone  who went on the Yellowstone from Columbus to Laurel  and caught some rainbow trout and some ling. They were using mostly worms.  A couple of cats also were caught.

Stillwater River- Guys were catching some rainbow trout.

Crooked Creek- I talked to some guys who said some of the ice was off, but it was floating

Yellowtail- Some guys went on Yellowtail in boats  you can’t get to Okka Bay because of the roadblock.  It was good fishing  before that. I saw pictures of a 5 pounder and a 11-pound rainbow.

Cooney- As of Tuesday the edges were pulling away, I was told.  Note-As of Wednesday staff said it has all froze up overnight with the change of colder weather.

Rock Creek at Red Lodge- A few fly fishermen  guys fished at Rock Creek by Joliet and caught rainbows and browns. They were using red copper johns.  If you went below it got dirtier, higher up was clearer.

Elmo- Some nice cut throats  were caught on Lake Elmo this week.  “

 Someone said Georgetown has ice right now.

 Rich’s Tackle Richard  406-285-4540

Rich says, “ I saw no one at all this week. I am in the shop but to make things safe for my wife and I will sell my bait through a call or knock.  With the pike bite ready to come on, I do have lots of herring.  Just call and I will meet you at the door.  That helps my business and your recreation needs. The number to call is 285-4540. Thank you

The rivers are open, and some people are fishing.  Don’t know if they have caught anything. ”

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

According to the phone message the shop is closed until April 10th because of the virus. You can email for booking trips or check on an already booked trips.

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

Beau says, “Fishing on the  Big Horn was decent, but you can’t fish there now because of the roadblocks.

I do know of the advisement about staying home. If you go fishing somewhere else go alone.  Then you won’t be in contact with others or having others touch your vehicle or boat.  We all know we want to get out but please take the precautions they request.  ”

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

Rick explains,” we have been closed by the county health department.   There are no lodges available because of the virus.  People that are fishing are only locals because of the tribal posts that are stopping others from coming in.  We are not doing any shuttles to protect ourselves and you.  Please stay safe.  The  nymphing was  fair. The river is up. The CFS is 52,000 and the water is gin clear.  They were using midges  early in the day. Right now it is a wait and see what happens next.  “

  We are in winter  hours and are open  8 am to 12 every day.

Madison River Outfitters- West Yellowstone – Tom Forsberg.  Open 730am-9pm  406-646-9644.

 West Yellowstone Area Fishing Report 10/7/19 


No further fishing report until Spring