N. Idaho NW Montana Guidance

River Pig

Active Member
#1
I'll be heading to Albeni Falls and Libby dams next week for work and will of course be packing a couple flyrods (three and six weight). I'll be staying in Sandpoint, ID and travelling out to the dams, so I'm looking for any intel on creeks/small rivers that I should check out, recommended patterns, fly shops I shouldn't miss etc. Anyone that lives up there and wants to rendezvous after work one day I'll buy beers. PMs are welcome and you can rest assured I won't share locations over the internet or with anyone but personally vetted fishing buddies. Thanks in advance for any assistance. -- Kent
 
#2
there is a great flyshop in sandpoint go spend some money and they will point you towards some fish. there is also a great fly shop in troy montana call the shoo fly. he makes awesome rods and has great local knowledge.

to people thinking about responding, please, dont hotspot. if you insist on giving up the info, DM the man!
 

Old Man

Just an Old Man
#3
there is a great flyshop in sandpoint go spend some money and they will point you towards some fish. there is also a great fly shop in troy montana call the shoo fly. he makes awesome rods and has great local knowledge.

to people thinking about responding, please, dont hotspot. if you insist on giving up the info, DM the man!
Whats a DM.
 

River Pig

Active Member
#4
there is a great flyshop in sandpoint go spend some money and they will point you towards some fish. there is also a great fly shop in troy montana call the shoo fly. he makes awesome rods and has great local knowledge.

to people thinking about responding, please, dont hotspot. if you insist on giving up the info, DM the man!
Thanks Dustin. I dont want to cause any hotspots, wetspots or any kind of spots. PM or DMs welcome. Please no BMs.
Do you know the name of the flyshop in Sandpoint? All I see online is north 40. Thanks -- Kent
 

slim

Fish or Ski...Fish or ski....fish!
#11
Hey River Pig, I grew up about 3 miles east of Albeni Falls Dam. The only real fly fishing spots around there would be lake fishing outside of Newport. Lots of Pend Orielle tributaries around Sandpoint but most people have tight lips regarding them. As Dustin mentioned head into the fly shop for some intel.
 

River Pig

Active Member
#12
Hey guys,
Finally coming out of my depression enough to offer up a report.
Got to Sandpoint, ID Monday night in time to hit up North 40 and check into the hotel. I'm always amazed at how much stuff that store has.
Tuesday after my boat inspections at Albeni Falls I burned rubber into Montana to check out a large tail water everyone was recommending. I love Montana.

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It was big water for a wader. I talked to a guide coming off the river and he pointed me towards a small tributary that might be easier to tackle. It was beautiful but I didn't see any signs of fish. Swung and back trolled streamers, hopper dropper, you name it. All techniques that work on my local.

Wednesday I inspected some boats at Libby Dam and fished the same tailwater only higher up. My contact at the dam recommended a spot where the Corps of Engineers built large logjams and sure enough there were risers everywhere. In four hours I managed to miss one hit on a dry and lose another dinker when I set the hook and threw him through the air. He landed safely back in the drink. I would stop for 7-10 minutes when I thought I had thrashed the pools too much and fish would continue to rise unaffected. Maddening... I finally decided to try another tributary in hopes of finding some less selective fish and getting the skunk off before the day was up.

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It too was beautiful but even the juiciest slots were devoid of fish for all I could tell. Frowny face.

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Thursday I woke up with nothing to do but get the skunk off and drive back to the coast. I was heading to a spot on the Clark Fork in Idaho when I realized I left a fly box and hat on the banks of that creek in Montana. Jesus. Back to Montana we go. I left at dark the night before and I was up at daybreak again with a two hour drive to get to the spot where I left it. Hopeing my chances were reasonably good of finding it where I left it. Great Success!

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I fished that creek for an hour even though it was still morning and barely above freezing.

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It just looked so good, but nada...

My last resort was the honey hole on the Clark Fork in Idaho the gentleman at North 40 recommended to me. Along the way I ran into some wildlife...

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stopped to run with the trolls...

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and stacked up some rocks...

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When I got to the spot on the Clark Fork there were risers, and good size ones along the bank for a good hundred yard stretch. In order to cast upstream I had to face downstream and cast over my shoulder with a cliff face on my left looking downstream and a deep pool on my right. I again missed the first hit on a medium sized madam x type pattern, then promptly lost it on some cliff bushes. I hastily tied the same pattern on and quickly set the hook into a solid fish and broke the fly off seconds later. "Slow down" I told myself. "The skunk is almost off". But then like on the other tailwater, I just couldn't buy a bite. Changing down to a size 16 or 18 purple haze. Streamers. Good rests for the pool while the fish continued to rise unfazed. Finally I had to leave in order to make it back to Grays Harbor. As I was walking away fish continued to jump and rise. I gave a bitter "F you" to each one and retreated to Washington a broken man.

Big thanks to @Philonius and @IveofIone Your advice was great, apparently I just suck at this fly fishing thing.
 

River Pig

Active Member
#14
Should have mentioned. Shoo Fly in Troy, Montana is a super skookum tackle shop. Hand made rods, locally tied flies, locally tied bucktails for gear trolling, snagging rigs. Anything you need.
 

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