Spinners-Kootenai River Montana Fishing Report 8-5-2018
This Kootenai River fishing report is brought to you by Linehan Outfitting Company and provides current Kootenai River and fishing conditions. It will be updated frequently or as conditions change. We have guides available and we’re the local source for all things surrounding the Kootenai River. Give a call anytime if you have any questions about the Kootenai River or anything about Montana fly fishing or fly fishing in general.
Discharge from Libby Dam: Summer discharge has been leveled off and will remain in the 9,000 cfs range through end of August.
In-Flow From Lake Koocanusa: approximately 8,100 cfs
Kootenai River water temperature below Libby Dam: 61 degrees
Water Clarity: Water clarity is excellent.
Best time of day: Conditions are terrific all day at the moment. Sure, mornings and late evenings will provide better and more consistent dry fly action but fish are eating in specific water types all day. Nymphing is strong throughout the day.
Hatches: midge, caddis, pmds, crane flies, hoppers and ants
Patterns: parachute Adams, purple parachute Adams, pmd spinner, parachute pheasant tail, midge cluster, green meanie midge, elk hair caddis, caddis emerger, pmd dries, pmd emerger, Bloom’s caddis, purple chubby, red chubby, royal Wulff, zebra midge, green goblin, olive emerger, Pat’s rubber legged stonefly, pt soft hackle, bead head pt, bh copper john, red bh copper john, big bunny streamers and deceivers in red, pink and olive.
It looks like it’s going to get hot here again in Kootenai River Country. After a week of really nice daytime temps in the 80’s it appears we’re headed for the high 90’s again. Fortunately Libby Dam always supplies lots of cold water so conditions will remain great.
Dry fly action in the mornings is still about a small parachute and pmd spinner falls are still in play. Like the Energizer Bunny, they just keep going and this year in particular pmd activity has lasted a bit longer. Look for good spinner activity in the mornings below big riffles and downstream from riffles in tailouts and slick water runs. 5x and ten foot leaders are still working perfectly well if you get a good, drag free drift. 6x will help for sure as fish become a bit more snooty in slick water.
Hopper action has been steadily increasing and thicker fish are responding to big bugs. Droppers are in play now and have been picking up fish during the afternoons in faster water. Fish are definitely getting shy on certain days during the afternoons under heat and high sun. That’s when a dropper or full nymphing rig can keep the day alive.
Nymphing is still strong. Target fish in faster water and especially around boulders and drop offs. Fish an indicator about 5 feet to a BB split shot and run a size 10 bh prince with a size 16 bh pheasant tail. Enjoy whitefish! They’re native too.
As daytime temps rise be sure to stay cool. Douse your buff, wear sunscreen, take breaks in the shade, jump overboard, skip and go naked…okay, maybe that’s a bit much but be careful of heat stroke. It actually happens. And above all, stay hydrated with water. Leave the suds alone until after you’re off the water.
And now for some incredibly exciting news! The Boston Red Sox are 3 for 3 at Fenway against the evil empire NY Yankees. Two nights ago Rick Porcello pitched a complete game and with a bit of run production got the win. When’s the last time you saw anybody pitch a complete game? Doesn’t happen very often. The Red Sox are on a tear, still in first place, and all is well in the world.