Visiting Washington from Montana


New Member
Hey guys. I hope to be doing a road trip from Montana to the area around Riffle lake in May. This is more of a hang gliding than a fishing trip, but would love to fish some if the flying weather is not good. I will be camping and or staying near Morton or Glenoma. I see there is some flowing water nearby, the Tilton (sp) river near Morton?

I am not asking for any secrets, or expecting any, just a very general thing like yeah, there are trout or smallies in this water. Actually, if there are small mouth in any rivers or streams that would be great. I live in Paradise Valley, surrounded by trout and miss small mouth fishing.

Thanks for any help!


Active Member
In May, most Washington rivers are closed to protect outmigrating salmon and steelhead smolts. The Tilton falls in that category, probably more because of the neighborhood it flows through than to protect smolts, since the Tilton is dammed at Mayfield Lake. The Tilton had a large plant of hatchery rainbows to good size in years past, but I think they quit stocking it a couple years back, as all I've caught there recently has been wild cutthroat (which is NOT a bad thing, but the action is slower than it used to be). The Cowlitz River is open year-round and has steelhead and spring chinook (good luck) in May. That's your best river option, I think.

You'll be here during lakes season. I mentioned Mayfield Lake. It has trout, bass, and tiger muskies (again, good luck). Riffe Lake has excellent smallmouth fishing (so I'm told) in the shallows at the upper end. Also has landlocked coho and chinook in the mix.


New Member
Thank you Shad. Looking at the maps the Cowlitz is right there below launch. How does it fish between the lakes? Or, if the water is clear, should I go above Lake Scanewa?

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