Catching Rainbows

I had a chance to tag along with a fly fisherman to Bear Paw Lake south of Havre recently. The lake is located in Beaver Creek Park, a 17 mile long, one mile wide park.

As you drive the paved road through the park you see numerous campgrounds and picnic shelters on each side – a recreationist’s mecca with easy access.

It was about 5pm and we were starting to feel some cool fall temps. At first glance I looked at my fishing buddy and thought, jeez, you are going to freeze! But, he had some pretty unique waders that really looked like trousers, something I hadn’t seen before.

Bear Paw Lake is obviously named for the Bear Paw Mountains, a pretty island mountain range nearby that is viewable from the lake.

If you are driving along US Hwy 2 through Havre you have no idea how different the scenery is just about 15 minutes south of town. Rolling grasslands, cottonwood groves, rocky cliffs, aspen and pine trees combine to make incredibly diverse vegetation here.

I wanted to see some expert fly casting and I wasn’t disappointed!

We didn’t have any wind, not even a breeze, so the only thing making the fishing line dance in the air was our fly fisherman. You could almost choreograph those casts to music! I bet his arm was tired when we finished.

Several casts produced a nice rainbow trout – it doesn’t happen that way when I’m trying to fish. I decided he was lucky!

Then he proceeded to catch a few more in the next hour or so.

I wanted photos of at least one of the fish and I had to be quick or else my fly fishing buddy had them returned back to the lake.

In Beaver Creek Park there is moving water (Beaver Creek) and still water (Bear Paw Lake and Lower Beaver Creek Lake) and they have rainbow and brook trout, walleye and Northern pike, bass and perch. That ought to be enought to please everyone!

As the sun began to set it started to get a bit cooler.

Obviously, I wasn’t dressed warm enough and for my next fall fishing trip in Montana I’ll be better prepared.

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