Montana: Clark Fork and Rock Creek in September

I spent several days in MT recently. Started out on the Clark Fork with some friends, doing the drift boat thing. Fishing was slow on Saturday, better on Sunday with rising fish to cast to. A 23 and a 20-inch trout were taken by other boats; got my best fish of the day on a small hopper.

On Monday I went to secret spot called Rock Creek. I had been there once before, a long time ago, during peak runoff. Fishing was poor then, but not this time. There are a lot of trout in that river; it has all types of water, and it is perfect for wading. Super fun, and good camping too. Lots of fish like this in there:

There's a secret spot on this secret river that I'll call Harry's Flat. I'll call it that because there are secret signs there, a secret campsite or 15 right in front of this spot, and it is marked on secret $1 maps that you can pick up at the fly shop on the way in. I left the Dalles CG in the morning, slightly green from the previous night's <ahem> campfire smoke <ahem> When I got to the secret spot there was no one in the CG or on the water, but there were bugs hatching and fish rising in a nice deep flat with good structure. I fished up with a dry:

then back down with a bugger:

When I left, a couple Washingtonians had pulled in. Who knows how they heard of this secret place. I told them I had warmed up the water at the secret spot for 'em and headed on my way upriver to a different secret spot with spotty directions from a friend. You know, pullout, logs, tree, island, that sort of thing. When I found this spot, my friend had left me a present of a stripping basket at the primo casting spot to fish the backeddy. Funny thing is, he never mentioned it, and that basket must've stayed put through 2 seasons. Wow.

Then there was this shallow riffle. I couldn't believe how many fish were rising in this thing, in just a few inches of water. There was a mixed hatch going on, but the size 12 EHC worked great.

Yup, this Rock Creek is a nice spot.

Saw some wildlife on the way out. And though it's probably illegal, I snipped the tail off a roadkilled Douglas Squirrel and stashed it away.

And of course, I had to stop at this one place I know on the Clark Fork on the way back for "one more fish." I was glad I did.

I drove home feeling pretty great.
Nice report, great pics.
So what days we you fishing secret Rock creek?
Sharon and I were there from Sept. 13 to 16. Had a great time in those secret waters.

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