LOCAL BIOLOGISTS DESERVE THANKS!
Conditions were darn near perfect this year on the Kootenai River thanks in part to local biologists. We are incredibly fortunate to have dedicated and passionate local biologists at the Libby Dam (US Army Corps of Engineers) and with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks who work together to create better habitat for native fish populations in the Kootenai River. In their words, they are constantly “tweaking the system” to maximize annual productivity and to maximize the health of the fishery in general. The relationship local anglers and guides have with the agencies here is kind of unusual in a way. Often, there is tension and dissatisfaction directed toward agencies responsible for managing resources. Not here and not by local guides. Collectively we feel super lucky and appreciative for the care and dedication our local biologist and wardens exhibit each day in their efforts to constantly improve the Kootenai River fishery.
We had nothing short of outstanding water conditions throughout the entire season and the trout and fishing responded. Hatches of mayflies and caddis were solid and steady each day and the hopper bite this year seemed over the top during mid-August and September. Populations of rainbow trout were great and the average size seems to be increasing over the last couple years. Westslope cutthroat numbers also seemed to be higher this year with many return guests commenting on the noticeable increase in cutthroats compared to past years.
What does all this mean? It means that the future looks bright for the Kootenai River. And all things considered we’re expecting another banner year in 2023.