Smalley is busy ... catching fish that is

Print Article

“If you’re too busy to go fishing, you are too busy!”

Remember that sign? It hung for years in The Place restaurant and, more recently, in the Great Northern Bar, both in Whitefish.

Well, after too many days of lawn chores, one sunny afternoon last week reminded me I was too busy, so I went fishing.

Early Wednesday afternoon I launched my personal pontoon on the calm water of Beaver Lake.

Thinking trout might prefer warmer, shallow water, I kicked around the shallows casting a peacock-herl bodied dragonfly nymph.

Almost immediately I was greeted by a curious loon. Within 10 minutes I caught a foot-long rainbow trout.

Life was good. For 15 minutes. Until those black clouds showed up, the wind shifted to the north and I was fighting whitecaps just to get back to the boat ramp.

On water time — less than a half hour!

Undaunted, I drove to Rogers Lake the next afternoon. The lake was white-capping. I put on hip boots and helped some guys put their boat back on the trailer.

Then I sat in the truck and waited out the squall.

Within a half hour the wind died, the sun came out, and I started casting a size 12 Red-Assed Partridge on a slow-sink line.

First cast, first fish! A 12-inch grayling.

Then another. Then another. Then another.

Every cast was a bite. Mostly grayling, but an occasional fat and feisty cutthroat trout.

When the wind totally died, I could stand up and watch the fish swimming in shallow water and target individual fish.

More than once I thought, “I HAD been too busy!”

Jerry Smalley’s Fishful Thinking column appears weekly in the Hungry Horse News.

Print Article

Read More Outdoors

Whitefish not so easy to catch, say local fishing experts

November 13, 2019 at 7:47 am | Lake County Leader Where are the whitefish? Each fall, many thousands of lake whitefish migrate up the Flathead River system from Flathead Lake on a spawning trek. Lake whitefish are broadcast spawners, meaning when ...


Read More

Book by former HHN employee chronicles North Fork adventures

November 13, 2019 at 7:39 am | Lake County Leader A former Hungry Horse News employee has recently released a book detailing her family’s adventures in the North Fork. The “Montana We Knew” tells the story of the adventures of Brooks, her husband T...


Read More

Lawsuit looms over train-caused grizzly deaths

November 06, 2019 at 7:14 am | Hungry Horse News Two environmental groups have filed a 60 day notice of intent to sue Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway and the Department of Interior, claiming that too many bears are being killed by trains, a vi...


Read More

Hunting opener slightly below average, FWP notes

October 30, 2019 at 8:15 am | Hungry Horse News Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks reported nearly 2,700 hunters and 240 harvested animals at its five check stations across Northwest Montana’s Region 1. The overall number of hunters and harveste...


Read More

Contact Us

(406) 892-2151
PO BOX 189, 926 Nucleus Avenue
Columbia Falls, MT 59912

©2019 Hungry Horse News Terms of Use Privacy Policy