Tim Linehan on Montana's Kootenai River

This Kootenai River Montana fishing report is being brought to you by Orvis Endorsed Linehan Outfitting.  This report will be updated weekly to provide current conditions, weather, hatches, patterns, and flows to our local waters and across the state.

Flows from Libby Dam: 4000 cfs

In-Flow To Lake Koocanusa:  approximately 2400 cfs

Water temperature at Libby Dam: 51 degrees

Hatches: midge, baetis

patterns:  zebra midge, parachute Adams, Rosenbauer's olive rabbit foot emerger, purple haze, purple chubby, red chubby, olive sparkle dun,bh prince, soft SJ worm, bh pheasant tail, bh rubber legged stonefly, big streamers in white, pink and olive, circus peanut, black conehead buggers, perdigons, Uke's Pressure Drop, water walkers

The Kootenai River is still in excellent shape.  

After an extended and particularly mild fall we've suddenly entered early winter.  Expect rain/snow mix for the foreseeable future, cloud cover, daytime temperatures in the 30-40s and basically damp and chilly.

Water temperatures are still good and hovering around 50 degrees.  With temperatures in that range trout are still actively feeding especially if bugs are active.

Look for fish in deeper runs, buckets, and in cover.  They are moving this time of year and will be spending less time in riffles due to less insect activity. 

Dry fly action will be spotty this time of year.  That said, if baetis are popping you'll have fish on top.  Midge are always active below the Libby Dam.  Flows are now lower and the water is gin clear.  Fish at least a ten foot leader if you find rising fish and get a good drift especially in the flats and tailouts.

Nymphing is still super solid if you really want to put up some numbers and go that route.  Short leashing and Czech nymphing (three to four feet to first fly) in softer runs and boulder gardens has been producing fish.  Two tungsten perdigons three to four feet from a baby bobber has been pretty effective lately.

 fStreamer fishing is also productive this time of year.  Big fish are on the prowl as they bulk up for winter.  Be patient, get flies down and ten to twenty foot depth charge sinking tips are best for these flows.  Look for bigger fish in deep pools and let your flies swing all the way through the run and pulse the tip of the rod from time to time as well. 

We surely hope this Kootenai River fishing report has been helpful. 

Give a call anytime if you need more Kootenai River details or information on any of our hunting or fishing adventures.  And please check out our e-commerce site for all Linehan Outfitting branded soft wear and hats and all Orvis gear as well. https//linehan-outfitting.myshopify.com

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