Any Rock Creek advice you are willing to Share?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by obiwankanobi, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. obiwankanobi

    obiwankanobi Active Member

    I am headed to Rock Creek(famous westside MT stream) for the first time this weekend and plan on heading to the Rock Creek Merc for the local fishing scoop. I am also researching this watershed now online and gathering tips/hints from previous posts/online fly shops. We booked a cabin for two nights and are looking forward to the weekend.

    Any advice you are willing to share about this place? You can send me a pm and all advice will be returned with the intel/report that I gather after this weekend.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. ScottP

    ScottP Active Member

    Don't drive a car you care about above MM 9 (or is it MM 10?) on the RC Road

    make sure you have studs/cleats

    Kingfisher & Grizzly Hackle worth a stop

    burgers at the Mo Club (in Missoula)

    have fun


    ps - smoke has been pretty bad around Missoula for a while (seems like the whole west slope of the Bitterroots is burning), not sure what it's like up the Creek; luckily, no fires there currently
  3. WT

    WT Member

    Stop at rock creek mercantile for a beer and the latest best advice.
  4. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    Why is it when people come to Montana to fly fish, they think they need different flies to fish here. I've been here for 6 and a half years now and I'm still using the same flies that I used when I fished in Washington state. They all work. But sometimes you need some of the same but in smaller sizes.

    Fly fishing isn't Rocket Science. It's just a nitwit out there throwing imitation bugs around.

    This isn't pointed at anybody. I just felt that it needed to be out there.
    G-spot4u, underachiever and Builder like this.
  5. Builder

    Builder Member

    Obi...The Old Man is right. I fish RC almost once a week , mornings when it was really hot.
    Attractors on top, Purple Haze, Red Humpy, Yellow Stimi. I've seen some Caddis under the rocks but as of last Weds they weren't keyed in. Any common nymph works, Copper John, PT, Prince etc. John at the Merc or Deb or Joe at Trout Bums will clue you in. This weekend might be good.
    I would suggest you mosy along up the creek pulling over wherever you see the type of water you like to fish. If you are willing to fight some brush you can find solitude. There are trout all over with a few being decent size.
    You also have a chance to catch 5 species in one day. Brown, Rainbow, Cutt, Bull and Brookie, plus a whitefish.
    John Paine and Kyle Smith like this.
  6. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    You can do this same thing on the Ruby River, But you can also add in a Grayling.
  7. Cliff

    Cliff Member

    I fished RC last Friday & Saturday. The water was pretty low. And as someone else mentioned the smoke from fires was pretty bad. I camped and fished at Dalles CG and got spanked. A few other fishermen I spoke with were also not having much success.

    TANGLES Richh

    I was there last week and fished above and below Red Lodge. Glad I just took my 4 wt. Pretty dinky fish, felt like the Snoqualmie. Did catch fish everywhere I went. Had a nice 12" one at the rest area about 10 miles north of town. I'd have liked to explore that part more because I think there were nice fish there but ran out of time. Also, take a look at the Stillwater, Johnson's Bridge. Stop in at the Chrome Bar for some local knowledge. Just starting to get some insight into the area when we had to leave, of course. Used orange stimis, hoppers, got Bob's hopper at the hardware store, elk hair caddis. A copper John dropper was common. Smokey haze was clearing when we left. I can't wait to go back and start where I left off, plus I love the steaks. We went to Yellowstone, didn't fish but watched herds of flyfishers going to the rivers. Would like to fish with Buffalo. We did encounter a moose on the creek up in the Beartooth's. Locals worry more about moose than bears. Good luck.

    TANGLES Richh

  10. ScottP

    ScottP Active Member

    Don't call it "wrong", call it the "other" Rock Creek. :)
  11. Obiwan -

    Drive up to ca. mp 20 to start fishing. Enduring 10 miles of the bad RC road is worth it.

    Builder likes this.
  12. Kyle Smith

    Kyle Smith Active Member

    Hey I camped at Dalles last Saturday too. I was the dork with the Volkswagen Golf at the end of the campground. I had fish just laugh at every dry fly besides the one that took a Royal Wulff, in a pocket that definitely doesn't see people often. I did have lots of hits on Czech Mates and big k-stones but kept missing them with the wobbly 9' 3wt I was using. I feel like the best fishing on Rock Creek is in deep spots that require a hike away from the road. Those juicy spots you see from the parking spots get pounded. Also, try and fish before the sun is high overhead; the air will be cold but the water will be 50.
  13. Cliff

    Cliff Member

    It's a small world, Kyle. I was the dork in the first spot in the truck with the blue camper. Thanks for the tips. I usually fish RC in early July and I may just stick with that.

  14. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

    I believe that every county in Montana has a Rock Creek running through. I know that Beaverhead co. has about three of them. There are fish in them but not as nice as the "The Rock Creek" has.
  15. Trustfunder

    Trustfunder Active Member

    If you get skunked on Rock Creek then you're going to have a hard time catching fish in a hatchery.
    troutdopemagic likes this.
  16. troutdopemagic

    troutdopemagic Active Member

    I've fished Rock Creek every summer for the last 10-12 years, as well as sporadically throughout the year and if you want to actually catch fish on Rock Creek, fishing at the Dalles/Swinging Bridge is a terrible idea.
  17. Kyle Smith

    Kyle Smith Active Member

    Why is that? It's undoubtedly some of the fishiest-looking pocket water around. I must admit, I've had way better success between Tamarack Cr. and MM7, and that's all paved too.
  18. travisbrown73

    travisbrown73 New Member

    A couple things I would like to add to the discussion:
    First, my gf and I went there to fish on 8-29.
    I don't get it.
    There is some absolutely unfishy water on that creek. Lots of it. Flat, wide, shallow. If I was a fish, I would just move on. I don't get it at all....I kept looking at the Gazateer and thinking that the really fishy stuff must be way down the road....
    Secondly, regarding access, we took my dad's BMW Z3 up to MM25.
    :) Not bad, really.

    I just didn't understand what was going on. That is a lot of semi-stoopid road to drive down for some un-awesome looking water. Granted, we only walked in to spots that were off the road (and out of sight) in a few places hoping to find the hidden stashes.... no love. No Rock Creek Love at all. It was so bad, I did almost throw my line in at the swinging bridge, just because it was some of the fishiest looking water we saw all day. I was that desperate.
  19. Kyle Smith

    Kyle Smith Active Member

    There are some nice pools on the lower end of the creek. It fished really good all through July then it shut down a bit. Small nymphs under an EHC worked pretty much all summer.
  20. Travis,
    A lot of people don't 'get it' the first time or two on Rock Creek. Despite what trustfunder had to say, it isn't always loving and it can be very subtle, but it also can be a great fishery. It may just not suit your style.