Posts tagged: Missouri River
FLY FISHING — A friend of mine taunted me while I was at elk camp in October with text messages raving about the fly fishing fun he was having for bigger-than-average brown trout in the Missouri River near Craig, Mont.
Surveys recently released by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks support his delight.
Fish surveys this year indicate rainbow and brown trout numbers remain above the long-term average in the Missouri River between Holter Dam and the town of Cascade, says a Montana fisheries biologist.
State fish survey crews this fall estimated 5,194 rainbow trout greater than 10 inches long per mile near the town of Craig on the Missouri. Not only is that above the long-term average of 3,174 rainbows per mile, but continues a trend of above average numbers over the past three years: 6,034 per mile in 2011 and 7,312 in 2012.
This year’s population was bigger in size and slightly lower in abundance than the past two years, says Fish, Wildlife and Parks fisheries biologist Grant Grisak, which is typical as the current population reaches its maximum size.
“This year,” Grisak says, “87 percent of the rainbow trout in the Craig section were 15 inches long or greater, and 35 percent of the population was 18 inches long or longer.”
Next year, the population should return to normal levels, unless an unusually high water event occurs in the spawning tributaries, Grisak says. High water in the Missouri River tributaries typically results in high rainbow trout production.
Brown trout in the Craig section at 10 inches long and greater were estimated at 745 per mile. The long-term average is 578.
In the Cascade section, near the town of Cascade, the estimate for rainbow trout 10 inches long and greater was 2.260. The long term average is 1,551 per mile.
Brown trout in the Cascade section 10 inches long and greater were estimated at 447 per mile. The long term average is 387.
Brown trout populations are sampled in the spring and rainbow populations are sampled in the fall.
ANGLING — The annual Fly Fishing Film Tour presented last night to a nearly full house at the Bing Crosby Theater soared beyond expectations. The films were beautifully photographed and brilliantly edited, capturing moods ranging from kick-ass action to admiration and emotion.
The audience, which I would describe as severely male, relished fishing for tarpon, bonefish, huge arctic char and a day of bull-trout fishing with Beckie Clarke (left) a Fernie, British Columbia, guide who led a filmmaker on a hike into a stretch of stream in the Elk River Valley.
The crowd last night gave rousing appreciation for the film Doc of the Drakes (see clip above) and the persistence of a guide and a man with Parkinson's disease determined to hook a trout in the peak of brown drake hatch on Idaho's Silver Creek.
Click here for details about the show and all the films.
Click here for a film clip and my profile of a Missouri River guide who idled his rod to photograph other guides relishing the dry fly action near Craig, Mont. The film generated loud applause at the Bing.
The Fly Fishing Film Tour will be returning to the Inland Northwest on April 20 in Sandpoint.
FLY FISHING — A friend just back from fishing for rainbow and brown trout in the Missouri near Craig, Mont., said all of his action was on nymphs. (Uh, remember we're talking about fishing.)
“One 20-inch fish, sporadic pods so lots of time without fish,” he said.
“The owner of Headhunters (Fly Shop in Craig) and one of his guides were fishing on their own, not trout but buggering for walleye at the dam, getting big ones. They said they had to fish the patterns verly slowly and they could barely feel the hits.”