Hooking Walleye on Canyon Ferry Lake During a Classic Montana Spring Day

You'd have to be crazy to fish walleye on Canyon Ferry Lake in the spring.

For those who live in Big Sky Country, spring is best described as tumultuous, and the day we went fishing for walleye on Canyon Ferry Lake was no different. The day started out fine weather-wise and my friend Steve and I had unloaded the fishing gear into the boat just above the docks. Previous rains had turned a portion of the lake into a sea of chocolate milk.

Soon, we were gently cruising across the water with four lines out. Suddenly, Steve caught a snag and we navigated the boat back to the spot using the trolling motor. We got closer and Steve told me he hooked a fish, but his rod remained relatively still and only slightly bent. When he told me he thought he had a fish I saw the carp's body surface. Quickly I grabbed the net and we found the carp had been hooked in the side. Steve snapped a quick photo and chucked the fish back in the water.

We noticed more boats were on the other side of the water so we aimed the boat towards the opposite shore and cruised out. Again we put the lines out and started trolling with crank baits. Pointing to one of the rods Steve said, "I think that one's got a fish." I doubted this as the rod looked very still. When I started reeling it in I found a 16 inch walleye on the other end. After a failed attempt at capturing a grab and grin moment we landed another smaller walleye.

Then the weather turned bad. Snow began to fall and the temperature dropped. Steve checked his phone and asked, "We got 23 mile an hour winds coming in the next hour, wanna call it?" I told him we should go, as a massive storm cloud looked to be hurdling towards us from the north.

We got the rods in and headed quickly to the docks. In about fifteen minutes we are back in the truck with two nice walleye for dinner. We headed down the road and soon the rains came. I turn to Steve, "We made it out of there just in time," he nodded. Almost as soon as I uttered the words the sun came back out and the wind seemed to stop. My mouth dropped open and Steve shrugged, "Springtime in Montana."