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Best Places To Fish in Montana

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By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Montana is renowned for its exceptional fishing opportunities, with a wealth of diverse water bodies that attract anglers from around the world. From mountain streams to expansive rivers and pristine lakes, the state offers a wide range of fishing experiences and an abundance of popular fish species. The purpose of this page is to share basic information about the best fishing opportunities in the state, for a variety of fish species.

One of the best places to fish in Montana is the Yellowstone River. Known for its scenic beauty and rich aquatic life, the Yellowstone River is home to various fish species, including rainbow trout, brown trout, cutthroat trout, and whitefish. The river provides excellent opportunities for fly fishing, with its riffles, pools, and pocket water offering a challenging and rewarding angling experience. The best season to fish the Yellowstone River is during the summer and fall months, when water levels are more manageable and the fish are actively feeding.

Another popular fishing destination in Montana is the Missouri River, particularly the section below Holter Dam. This stretch of the river is famous for its exceptional rainbow and brown trout populations. Anglers can enjoy drift boat fishing or wade fishing, casting dry flies, nymphs, or streamers to entice the trout. Spring and fall are the prime seasons to fish the Missouri River, although summer can also provide excellent fishing opportunities.

Flathead Lake is another notable fishing spot in Montana, known for its abundance of lake trout, also known as Mackinaw. This large freshwater lake offers anglers the chance to catch trophy-sized lake trout while enjoying the beautiful mountainous scenery. Trolling with downriggers or jigging near drop-offs and underwater structures are effective techniques for targeting lake trout in Flathead Lake. The best time to fish for lake trout in Flathead Lake is during the early summer and fall when the fish are more active.

Montana's best fishing season depends on the specific fish species and water body. Spring and fall are generally considered excellent seasons for trout fishing, as the fish are more active and feeding in preparation for spawning or winter. Summer months offer great opportunities for warm water species such as bass, pike, and walleye. Ice fishing is also popular during the winter months, particularly for trout and perch in frozen lakes.

It's important to note that fishing regulations and restrictions vary across Montana, so anglers should consult the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks website or local fishing regulations for specific information on seasons, bag limits, and any special regulations for the water bodies they plan to fish.

Montana's stunning landscapes and abundant fish populations make it a paradise for anglers. Whether you prefer fly fishing in mountain streams, casting in scenic rivers, or trolling in expansive lakes, Montana offers a fishing experience that will leave you with unforgettable memories.

There are many great places to fish in The Treasure State. One of the great treasures here is awesome fishing. Rivers, ponds and lakes provide anglers the opportunity to wet a line in pursuit of multiple cold-water and warm-water fish species.

Montana's Top-Five, Amazing Fishing Spots

Often the best place to fish is chosen by the species an angler prefers. The focus of this website is on major lakes, and we've chosen these five for their diversity of species and their long-standing reputations for serving up quality fishing. Learn more...

Most Popular Fish Species In Montana

Anglers in Montana can cast for two species of bass, three species of salmon, six species of trout, channel catfish, walleye, both species of crappie, white bass, yellow perch, sunfish and other popular species. Learn more...

Best Bass Fishing Lakes In Montana

Bass, both largemouth and smallmouth, tend to garner a great deal of attention in this high-country fishing mecca. About one fourth of the major lakes in the state have one, or both species. These three are a great place to seek great bass fishing in MT. Learn more...

Best Lakes To Fish For Salmon In Montana

Salmon thrive in cold, clean river systems. The Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks department has done a fine job of adding landlocked salmon to some of the lakes in the state. These three have proven to be a great place to fish for salmon in the state. Chinook, coho and kokanee are available in various waters across the state. Learn more...

Top Places To Fish For Trout In Montana

However you like to fish for trout, you can do it in spades here in Montana. You can choose to pursue rainbow, cutthroat, brook, brown, lake or golden trout. For many, the best place to fish for trout is in rivers and streams. On this website we only cover lakes, so we offer up these three that are considered to be top trout lakes by local anglers, over the years. Learn more...

Best Lakes To Fish For Catfish In Montana

Channel catfish are the main species of catfish found in waters across the state. Many of the rivers, ponds and lakes are home to these bottom-feeding cats. The state record is over 35 pounds, but there are plenty of them in the 2 to 5 pound range to keep the action going. Learn more...

Best Walleye Fishing Lakes In Montana

Known for excellent tasting filets, walleye are many anglers' favorite foe. They run in schools and put up a worthy battle when hooked. The state record is over 17 pounds. In addition to walleye, you can fish for sauger and saugeye as well. Learn more...

Enjoy these top spots to go fishing in Montana

Find the best places to fish, by state.



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