It’s that time of year again; hunters have taken to the hills, the ambitiously lethargic have returned to their recliners for the remainder of the year and the Salmo trutta are getting feisty. Arguably one of the more voracious fresh water salmonids the fall Brown Trout feeding frenzy is kicking off. The frenzy comes from the necessity of packing on girth in preparation for their annual fall spawn, the inevitability of a fast approaching winter and straight up pissing off these predators protecting their eggs once they have spawned. Like a fat man at a buffet table these fish feed aggressively and opportunistically and with an endless supply of food rolling past their faces, they can pick out the most prime of morsels. With a few days reprieve from the shop I spent some time on a few stretches of semi-local freestone exploiting this genetic weakness.
Finally getting back into the swing of things here in Craig MT; personally and fishing wise. With all the college kiddos’ back on campus the Craig shop called in the Calvary, so for the last few weeks yours truly has been kickin’ it in the town of two bars and too many trout. The primary reasons I’ve failed to provide you fine folks with the most up to date fishing info as the summer crowds subside and the fall fishing starts to pick up. My deepest apologies. Now that we’ve got all that out-of-the-way, let’s get down to business, you didn’t come to read about the awesome times I’ve been having at Uncle Joes Bar (I hope).
Cool mornings, mild days and very little crowds so far this weekend here in Craig, my question to all you folks kicking back at home is pretty simple; what in the hell are you thinking? Yea fishing can be challenging this time of year but things are starting to turn around as we hit the latter end of August. Nice rain shower last night put down the smoke and its sounds like it should stay clear for the rest of the weekend. Weather is looking good for the upcoming week as well, a few warmer days at the beginning of the week with things leveling out by Wednesday & Thursday. Now let’s get to the goods…. Continue reading
Updates from the F.W.P Offices concerning several rivers in Central and Western Montana. Some rivers dropping off the list, several being added. Here’s the most up to date list of rivers under hoot owl from Fish Wildlife & Parks. Rivers listed in BOLD have just been added and the restrictions are in effect starting TODAY, which still means No Fishing From 2 p.m to Midnight….
Western District Rivers:
- Bitterroot River, entire length excluding the East & West Forks
- Clark Fork River, headwaters to confluence with the Flathead River
- Flint Creek, from the Highway 1 bridge at mile marker 53 to the confluence with the Clark Fork River
- Silver Bow Creek, from the confluence with Warm Springs Creek (near Warm Springs) to the confluence with Blacktail Creek
- Blackfoot River, entire length of the main stem
- Tributaries of the Blackfoot River: North Fork below the falls, Morrell Creek, Gold Creek, Belmont Creek, Copper Creek, Cottonwood Creek, Monture Creek & The Landers Fork of the Blackfoot
Central District Rivers:
- Ruby River from Duncan District Road to confluence with the Beaverhead River
- Shields River from its mouth upstream to its confluence with Smith Creek
- Lower Madison River from Ennis Dam to the Missouri River Headwaters
- Lower Gallatin River from its confluence with the Madison River at Three Forks upstream to Sheds Bridge (Hwy 84) near Four Corners
- East Gallatin River from its origin (at the confluence of Rocky Creek and Bear Creek) to its confluence with the West Gallatin River
However F.W.P released a statement this morning regarding a few rivers in Central Montana; longer nights, cooler air temperatures and some much-needed rain have brought down the water temperature of several southwest Montana river systems. Therefore, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has lifted the angling restrictions on the Beaverhead, Big Hole, and Jefferson rivers effective Thursday.
I know this post might be pushing it a bit for some of you out there. Those of you who can’t seem to break the habit of fishing the same run, same river, same flies, same everything. If you’re into spending your summer days fishing with the masses drinking ice-cold beer and telling fish stories to tourists all night, this one might not be for you. This On the Road Report doesn’t end at a riverside parking lot, rather it begins and ends at a trailhead on the edge of Bob’s. If you haven’t been to Bob’s your missing out. He’s an awesome host, not a bad view to be had, more water than you could fish in two lifetimes and his floor is the most comfortable place to crash after a long day. The thing about Bob is you can’t really see his place without putting forth some effort. Sure, you can see his place from the road, but you don’t really see anything until you ditch your ride and hit the trails. So instead of hanging out with seemingly every other angler in the state that has descended upon the Missouri I loaded up the essentials; salami, easy-cheez, hammock, flies and whiskey being amongst them and went to kick it with Bob for the weekend. I’ll tell you now it was worth the blisters, bug bites and bear paranoia, anyways, whiskey always tastes better in wilderness. Continue reading