MT, OR, WA, ID report ..........

Over the last week and a half, Pete (greyghost) and I drove 2000 miles, fished 9 rivers spanning four states and managed to catch a couple nice fish. We started in Oregon fishing the Metolius, watching in awe as October Caddis buzzed around our heads and the lack of willing trout. We managed to hook a few fish, including a bull trout eaten whitey. From there we went east, driving most of the night to a undisclosed location somewhere in central Oregon. We slept for a few hours and continued driving, stopping at a creek that flowed out of the desert. After hours of hiking in the hot sun, and still fishless for the day, we continued driving.

We arrived in the evening at our next destination to rising brown trout just beyond the road. All I will say is that over the next two days we landed more nice trout than I can remember. (Highlights include multiple 22 s a 23” and a 24”) We spent the mornings fishing skwalas in the fast water and the afternoons picking off cruising fish in the ‘flats.’ This was probably the best stop of our trip.

After finishing our second full day of fishing the river, we started our driving again, pulling in to the campground on Idaho’s Lost River around 1am. The clear skies made for a cold morning but before long, the ‘bows of the Lost were looking for adult midges. We managed a few nice fish early and when the bwo’s started to come off, the fish were with them, the afternoon was spent casting to rising fish with bwo’s and midges. I believe we had around a dozen fish throughout the day between the two of us. As the sun started to drop beyond the cliffs, we were already on our way to Missoula. A call in Salmon, Idaho, confirmed that all of the local rivers had blown and fishing had slowed, so we began to prepare for the Missouri.

After a good nights sleep in Missoula, we were off to the Mo. We fished below Craig for two days with streamers and the occasional midge. We did get into some fish up top midday and in the evening as well as some noteworthy browns caught on streamers(pics to come) The second day on the Mo was cold and windy and after an early rush of eats on streamers, the fishing slowed down. We were heading back to Missoula.

With decent reports coming from the Clark Fork above Mill Town, we set out to fish some skwalas. Pwoens and his old man met us in Missoula and we headed to the upper Clark Fork. After contemplating a launch that held 9 other trailers, we decided to make our own launch on Rock Creek. We floated from about two miles up Rock Creek down to Swartz Creek on the Clark Fork. The fishing started off okay with a few eats on skwalas but slowed as we hit the Clark Fork. With gale force winds and a temperature drop, the fish were not willing. I believe greyghost Pete was the only one to get a fish…

Our last day in Montana resulted in partly cloudy skies and moderately warm weather. We took the RO up the Bitterroot and launched at Anglers Roost, immediately we had fish looking up and it ended up being a good day on the water. Smaller (12’s) Skwalas were the ticket and when the day was done we had an easy 50 eats. We drove back to Missoula to get one more nights sleep and left early to the Washington desert. The only real report that I can give is to be prepared when you go exploring. Greyghost and I estimated our hike to be around 12 miles and the liter of water that we had was surely not enough.

I would like to encourage all of you to take a fishing road trip. It is fun and can be relatively inexpensive. Licenses and gas were are only true expense and driving at night extended our fishing time. Get some!!
Yo Crump,

We waited for you guys by the damn on the Mo. but you guys were a no show, I figured since we left you working that huge group of fish that you guys fished them until you could no longer see. We decided to head back to Missoula and hit the bitteroot. It was amazing, probably the most fish that I have seen come out of that river. Same as you, easilly 50+ eats. Left my cell in Missoula call me at home if you want to hit the Skagit tomorrow. oh yeah and the bumping driftboat was sick.

Sorry Cal, we had dinner in Wolf Creek at a sketchy restaruant with a stuffed cow...but ended up at the dam later that night. Oh how I miss Montana already.


Idiot Savant
Well Crump, I was feeling kinda jealous up to the point when P-Dub and Daddy-O showed up. Then I felt sorry for you. Did Pat low-hole you again? Did Randy ever catch any fish?

Seriously, it looks like a great trip with great memories, not to mention some kickass photos.


Life goes on, enjoy it...


Active Member
I stuck to him like glue...everywhere he rowed, I rowed,..everywhere he cast, I cast. I was hoping some of the Joan Wulf techniques would were off on me...but I think I am for the worse now???

Glad its only a few hours from my house as the MT fishing can be some of the best!!

Oh ya...ask crump about his Princess Plate?? Sorry had to mention it my friend ;)

Thanks again for the "guided" float :p and Pete...YOU SUCK !!!! just playin

~Patrick ><>

"All too often we choose to see the fog in the clarity" Falling Up
I am as envious as could be. That sounds like a great trip; and great photos.

I did a road trip years ago, fishing the St. Joes, Madison, Rock Creek, & Henry's Lake in one week. Fun trip, no question. But I've never done it again and here's why. I find that it takes me at least two days to figure out a new river. So if I hop from river to river, I don't do nearly as well as if I just take one river per trip. I realize that it's not all about catching fish, and you will probably make more and different memories on a "road trip" style outing. But for me, two rivers per week is my max.

I'm just looking for reasons not to be too jealous, but they're tough to come by.

"If I don't catch them today, I'll catch them another day." Art Flick
Crump your a bastard!!! Alright Im just extremely jealous and I miss having a spring break. Great report on what sounds like a great trip! Drop me a line and lets go throw some line.
I was out in MT as well last week. Unfortunately I did not get to fish but a couple of hours. I was on the notorious job hunt. Luckily that was the big to be landed on the trip. I will be moving back to Butte, MT in Mid June.:thumb

The best part is that I will be getting there just in time for the salmonflies to start on the Bighole with over a week off before I have to start my new job!:rofl

If anyone on the board will ever need a place to stay or just wants info, I am more than happy to pass it along. 11 years of guiding in western MT has always treated me well when going back to fish.

My fishing this trip was so so at best. I spent a couple of hours on the upper Missouri, where I was hunting for big bows in the shallows durring the warm weather. I hooked 5 and landed 1 that was 22". My other bit of fishing was on the bighole, where the river had jumped up by 900cfs in 3 days and turned a bit off color. Since I was stuck wade fishing, I could not reach the good water. I managed to hook a couple was all. Oh well for the fishing.

Off to the OP this weekend to try my luck. :beer1
Shakes, congrats on the job find, sounds like you will have ample opportunities to make up for the fishing.

Pat, hey it's not my fault you guys can't catch fish when the conditions get tough ;-) jk. Believe it, fish still eat Skwalas when it's snowing and the wind blows 40 mph upstream.

And by the way, when those rural desert cops pulled us over, I saw a twinkle in the sherrifs eye when he looked at Crump after reading the "yield to the Princess" license plate holder. I knew there was something going on between them when we only got a warning.

And let's try not to mock that "Cafe" in wolf creek...I thought the clientel was of highest class (old man playing grab ass with a couple of backwoods hotties, a pair of eight year old boys at the bar) the decor was vintage (including small stuffed calf on wall) and the food was to die for (the best pan fried square steak I ever had). It's truly a dining experience.

All in all one hell of a trip, but still, I think I'll go fishing this evening....I hear the chiro's are hatching, and the searuns are really on the fry........and there has to be a few steelies around somewhere.......

Did you guys dine at the "Frenchman and Me" in Wolf Creek? If not, then that is definitely the place to be for food and cheap drinks. Especially early in the year before the tourists show up and the drinks get more expensive. Lots of memories floating the MO DUI on nightime mousing trips after leaving the bar, in my earlier years.:eek:
That sounds awesome! YOu should have stopped by here in Bozeman and fished the Gallatin, she is fishing hot right now:eek: Or the Madison, although lately, she has been a little fickle. Sounds like a good trip!
Rocky mountain brown

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