Flathead Lake fall fishing report

Posted on 30 November 2017

Fall 2017 Flathead Lake fishing report

Fall fishing great from shore or boat

By Dick Zimmer/Zimmer Tackle

In the past, any good perch fishing that I knew of on Flathead Lake was over near the middle of October.

fall perch and lake trout fishing flathead lake, montana living, dick zimmer,  paul soukup

My wife and I had our children coming from all over the country to spend their Thanksgiving vacation with us.

I’m of the mind that no homecoming experience is complete without at least one fishing trip, I wanted the day to be a positive experience for my young and thin-blooded grandchildren from Georgia, so to be reasonably sure it would be, I decided to use Saturday November 25thto do a little research.  It consisted of putting in at Walstad Park and fishing the hole just west of it. If I could catch perch there it wouldn’t be worthwhile to make the run over to the northeast corner of Cromwell Island, which I consider the best big fish perch hole anywhere on Flathead Lake North of Polson Bay.  In a short time at Walstad I caught some small perch, so I took off to Cromwell desiring to use my time as efficiently as possible.

Shortly after arriving I caught two large perch about 30 seconds apart.  Immediately I picked up and headed for the Bootlegger Island area.  I trolled around Steam Boat Rock using a Mepps Flying C and picked up a couple of Lake Trout but the action wasn’t near as fast as with the perch.  Fast action is necessary component for young people’s soul satisfaction so I thought we’d opt for the perch the next day. 
There we were, the last day of regular big game season going perch fishing.

Though it was a relatively nice late fall day, we dressed for extreme conditions just in case.  Better to be comfortably warm than enduring cold.  It’s easier to focus on fishing. 
The fish weren’t easy.  Not that they wouldn’t bite but in order to get a good hook set we had to give them plenty of time to take it in.  Nightcrawlers seemed to attract small fish so we went to cut bait which improved the percentage of large fish.  By the end of the day we came home with 63 keepers from 8 ½ to over 12”.  A #2 hook “smil’e “setup with a bottom weight helped keep us out of the weeds.  Everywhere we went the best fishing was from the depths of 35 to 40 feet.

The jumbo catchers in the picture are my son-in-law Aaron Velie, his two sons Ethan Joe and Sean and of course the “macman” or more apt in the recent past the “Perch man”. 
Paul Soukup of Ronan reported in the same weekend catching 12 lakers trolling using a diver trailing a Kamaloop spoon at depths of 80 to 90 south along Blue Bay. 
Marty Herak caught 16 Macs throwing Flying C’s along the shore on the East of Wild horse Island.
Everybody reports with few exception the fish are full of small perch. 
Shore fishermen such as Cowboy Randy Hovet did well no doubt because the perch are concentrating in shallow water.  He has made an art out of fishing from the docks and is proficient in shore fishing.

This winter whether fishing from shore, from a boat in open water or through the ice you can be assured that there’ll be lake trout, large perch and possibly whitefish wherever they are concentrations of small perch. 

There’ll be a number of winter fishing seminars at Snappy’s Sports Senter Dec. 9th in Kalispell where you’ll be able to learn secrets and techniques from some real pros. 
For more information you can contact us at 406-675-0068, my personal cell is 406-250-0241 or email us at:   macman@ronan.net 
Check our website at www.zimmertackle.com



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