Clark Fork Report Sept 05

Spent three days fishing the Clark Fork around Missoula and as usual had a great time. The weather, as is typical in Montana, was different every day.

We started out on Friday, Sept 9th floating Clinton to Turah. The day started out nice, but the same weather front that blew in here in the Seattle area hit us late that afternoon. What started out as a sunny, calm 70 degree day turned into a cool, windy (gusts over 30 mph) afternoon.

Saturday was by far the best fishing day. It rained all night, snow fell on the Bitterroots and the Sapphires and it was downright chilly the next morning. We did the Petty to Rest Stop float and did really well with a hopper/dropper combo catching the most fish on a size 16/18 red copper john. Later that day as the rain fell we were treated to a nice BWO hatch and caught a lot of nice fish.

Sunday was slower. Seems the rain brought the water up and may have caused the fish to pause somewhat. We covered a lot of water, not arriving at our takeout until well past dark. Fish were up in pods and we had decent fishing when we could find risers. Bugs were hatching all day, from small blue wings, to even smaller tricos and some mahoganies and sulphurs. Definitley a day spent rowing from pod to pod, working them for a while and then moving on.

Two rather funny things happened on this trip. On day one we were floating along when we came upon a guy with a backpack sitting on a rock in the middle of the river with his spinning gear. It was just a funny site to see some random dude, no waders, no hip boots, just sitting there on that rock.

On the last day we came across a guy fishing a big lakey section of the river. As we approached he asked us if we could do him a favor. He said he had risked his life wading across to this bank and he had caught a fish he wanted to have mounted and could we give him a ride back to the far shore. Now we were imagining that this guy had caught a trophy brown and had whacked it, but when we got over to him he hoisted what had to be a 20 lb. pike! Nice fish.

Great time. Caught a lot of fish and had a lot of fun.



Active Member
Nice report Jim, sounds like it was a fun trip- wife and I will be in St.Regis all of the 1st two weeks of October fishin' the Clark and others. Atleast she will be.
Yeah, he was one of our guides. First time I had fished with him so I don't remember his name, John something. Originally from Michigan. I could call my buddy and get his name if you're interested.

Jim said yellow hat. Nope that's my brother and he lives in Central Washington.


...has several mistresses.
The other cat you are talking about is John Havelick, works for Perry. Both are good buddies of mine, Johnny H is a hell of a guide too!

Thanks Xstream, you are absolutely correct. John is a great guide, and I really enjoyed being on the water with him.

Davy - you are going to have to lighten up on the Jack Daniels...I don't see anyone with a pipe in those pics. :confused:

I take it you are back from St. Regis?



Active Member
I am thinking of another Outfitter on the Clark-nvermind- someone I heard aout this past week-not in the picture- but your right about the drink too! Yes 200 some trout later we are back- hips fixed for the time being too -amazing what they do with lasers nowadays- got about 60 dzn Fox Poopahs to tye but when we fishin Jim?