Anyone interested in catching a mixed bag or just catch some species of fish you haven’t caught in awhile now is the time. The crappie fishng is best for the next 6 weeks. Also the pike fishing, perch and small mouth bass are red hot in the spring before the water warms up and the rivers get blown out from the runoff. How about some artic grayling? I recently purchased a new 16′ jon boat just right for these smaller bodies of water.
Where to fish:
The fishing on Flathead Lake remains to be steady. We have been averaging 4-10 fish per trip. Typically this time of year the fish are on the move. One day you might find them at 80ft. of water and the next day in 200ft. of water. Be flexible and move around until you find large concentration of fish and then concentrate on that depth. The runoff is going to be the unknown for the next couple months. Depending on the temperature and the amount of rain mix will determine how much runoff we will have day to day. The east side of the center bar in 140ft. of water has been working good.
What to use:
This time of year I try and cover as much area as I can. I usually will fish a dodger or a flasher with a houchie combo, that way I can troll at 1.8 – 2.3 mph. When I find fish then I can try different lures to figure out what they want at that given day. Also Brad’s Super Baits have been catching fish.
I have been having good results using the Cha Cha 4” Salmon Squidder rigs from Mack’s lure #60063 has been a great color, also try #60062. www.mackslure.com
Also the electronic Prochip 8 series from pro-troll has been working good with a mother of pearl houchie tipped with a piece of cut bait is a good go to setup.
Tip of the Day:
In the spring time the weather in NW Montana can be very unpredictable. Keep an eye on the weather; a good rule to follow is that if you think it is to rough it probably is, get off the lake so you can fish another day. Be safe!
“No Bad Days”
Mo Fisch Charters
Cannon Downrigger Authorized Service Center
Just a reminder, I am the A.S.C.Authorized Service Center for Cannon Downriggers. If you need any parts or repairs give us a call.
The fishing on Flathead Lake has been very good! Last week end we boated 16 fish with a couple slot fish, one 38″ fish at 18lbs.
Mo Fisch Charters
The ice is melting off of Flathead Lake and Westshore State Park is now open. Watch for some floating ice. In a week or so I am sure the lake will be completly open and free from all ice. We did two charters last weekend and it continues to be great fishing for big fish. We hooked 20 fish but only landed 13. The biggest fish was 38? at 19 lbs. All the fish were very healthy. Six fish in the slot size and a couple under the slot good for the dinner table. We were fishing deep at 190 to 200 ft. I look for the winter fishery to continue on the strong side. When the runoff starts, sometime in May, the fish will migrate to the river mouth. Get out and enjoy the great fishing. Be careful, pick a calm day.
See Ya on the water
We will be at the Montana Sportsman’s Expo in Kalispell Mt. on Friday Feb. 28th, Saturday March 1st. and Sunday March 2nd., 2014. Flathead County Fairgrounds-Trade Center, stop by our booth and say hi! We will be offering some great prices on some fishing tackle and free fishing advise. Also, we will have a show special on charters prices for 2014.
See you there
The lake trout fishing on Flathead Lake remains steady!
The last couple of weeks we have averaged 15 fish in the boat each trip. Yesterday, the biggest fish was 38” long and 15.8 lbs. Today we boated 5 nice slot fish at 31” to 34″ and cleaned 10 smaller fish, just right for the smoker.
What to use:
Flatfish on the bottom. Try the Mag lip from Worden’s, also the original flatfish in size T-50 or T-55 red/white, glow/white, silver/blue, and frog. Remember fish all these lures close to the bottom and very slow.
Try the flats off Westshore State Park in 160’ of water. Try trolling south as you get into deeper water 200’. Remember, keep an eye on the weather. West Shore State Park is the only good usable boat ramp to use this time of year. FWP does plow and sand the road, also the boat dock is usable.
Winter fishing on Flathead lake continues to be good. We can launch at West Shore State Park. We are fishing in 80-160 ft. of water from the boat launch to Cedar Island. Fishing shallow at 80’ try the typical dodger or flasher combo with the houchies in a glow white. Also try the Brad’s Super Bait behind a flasher.
If you want to try and target the bigger fish, try 120-190’ of water with big flatfish on the bottom. Remember, fish these flatfish at 1 mph or less as these big fish will not chase a lure very fast.
We put 11 fish in the boat yesterday morning in 3 hours. Nice size fish, 3-6lbs. perfect for eating.
The water temperature is 38 degrees, be careful and stay warm. If the wind comes up play it safe and get off the lake.
Just a reminder, winter is the time to do all your maintenance so you are ready to go in the spring. Winterize that boat, change the oil and the lower unit oil. Take your electronics out of the boat and store inside the house. Any LCD (liquid crystals) should not be left out in the cold. I always change my fishing line and start with new line every spring. Organize your lures and tie up some new leaders, build up your inventory of hooks, snaps and swivels.
For those of you that don’t know, I am the ASC (authorized service center) for Cannon downriggers in our area. Now is a good time to have those downriggers repaired, serviced before the season starts, before we all are very busy. Things to check on your downrigger would be the axle on the front roller, the cable, and cord. If you have any trouble with the switch going up or down it should be replaced. The clutch disc should be cleaned and lubed. Clean the electric board and reseal the case cover. Check your electric power cords, sometimes they get weather checked and start to crack. If you see any cracks in the cord, replace it. Cannon has changed the cord style on all their downriggers to the new style. It is a better cord and connection, but all the old cords will have to be replaced with the new style. There are no old style cords available. Remember a little maintenance in the off season could save extended down time in the summer.
Lake Koocanusa has been fishing okay. Two largest rainbows were 5 to 6 lbs. We have lost a couple that were bigger in the 10-12 lb. range.
Streamer flies have been picking up most of the fish. We have been averaging 6 to 10 fish per day.
The darker colors like purple, black, brown have been working the best. We caught a few fish on the dark colored Lyman plugs. Also a few fish on the rainbow patterned Rapalas.
The bigger fish will be showing more as the winter progresses. When the water temperature gets this cold try trolling a little slower, 2.6-2.8 mph. The surface water temperature was 48.0 degrees and dropping. Also catching and releasing 4 to 5 bull trout a day. Remember we cannot keep any bull trout this year.
Timing is everything, and now is the time. Lake Koocanusa is fishing great. We are averaging 8 to 12 fish a charter. The biggest rainbow so far in the boat tips the scale at 6 lbs. We have have put several 4 to 5 pound fish in the boat. Also we are catching 2 or 3 bull trout a trip. The surface water temperature is down to 50 degrees/PERFECT and only going to get better. As the water temperature goes down the fish come up. This time of year they get very aggressive and fight very hard.
They are hitting bucktail flies and Lyman plugs on the surface as well as sub surface using the downriggers. Remember dark days, dark lures, sunny days bright lures.
Check out some pictures on the home page for most recent catches for Lake Koocanusa.
See ya up north