Fishing Report

North Idaho Fishing Report


Updated 6/05/2019

By: Jeff Smith

I know where did the spring go well here we are about into June, the good news is you still can get some fishing in before all of the summer traffic hits the area lakes.  The boat traffic doesn’t hit full stride until July so if you haven’t been out much there is still time to get in a few spring like trips.  Actually June is a good month on most of the lakes and rivers the fish are not in summer mode yet and the recreational traffic is  minimal.  We hope to see you on the water.

I guess the next question is what are we doing on lake CDA right now.  Our boats have been chasing Pike for the most part.  The weeds are just starting to grow there is a week or two left of the trolling for pike if you want use the Husky Jerk Rapalas and troll  the 8-15 foot water in the bays if you start pulling more weeds than fish switch to casting in the same water with those plugs or maybe a spoon.  The other window of opportunity is the shallows were the new weeds are starting.  The Pike will hang in these areas for a short time until temps drive them deeper.  This can be some of the more exciting action of the spring because of the top water chances.  It can be a short window and I think the late afternoons and evenings are the best.  We will use some top water floating plugs or maybe a prop bait or even a buzz bait across the top the strikes are fantastic!  If the weeds are getting the best of you try a chatter bait or  weed less rigged plastic from or some other soft bait weed less rigged don’t forget the steel leader they tend to inhale some of these lures.  The numbers of smaller Pike seem stronger this year but there is still big fish opportunities even in the shallows at this time.  Be selective in your harvest we generally recommend the 24-28 inch fish for eaters and let the rest go.  Good luck.

You should be seeing the Smallmouth start hanging around the docks and shallows now for a couple of weeks as they complete their spawn and again the temps push them out to the drop offs.  I like to pitch a tube jig or a small swim bait on these fish but you can never exclude the Senko worms or whatever your favorite worm might be.  The square bill cranks can be another good choice.  You should find aggressive ready to bite fish in this next couple of weeks if you are looking for Smallies on CDA, Hayden or Pend Oreille lake.

Kokanee trollers it is about time to start looking to CDA lake for some good catches you might get a trip or two yet on Hayden then they will taper off by summer time for an early spawn.  CDA however just hits stride for 10-12 inch Kokanee as we sneak into summer and gets better and better as we go.  There might be a few larger ones but the numbers look to be really good again this year.  The bite has been already going on down on the south end from Powder Horn bay south but you should see this north end pick up soon if not already.

We have been up on Pend Oreille lake several times in May and have had some good catches but I think the peak of the surface trolling is going to be in the first couple of weeks of June and hopefully longer depending on the weather.  Maybe we were trying to push it but this next window of time should be good and you should start seeing more of those upper end Rainbows over 10 pounds.  June is also a good time for the Mackinaw contouring bottom with a small dodger and mini-squid tipped with bait or maybe a Lyman plug.  I like to use the helmeted herring with or without a flasher and get some good action on that as well. Be aware of the fish species as the Bull Trout will be in the mix as well and must be released.  We even landed a pretty good sized Brown Trout on one of our trips which for me was a rare catch.

With the merger of Fins & Feathers and Adventure Guide Service with Mike Cordon we are able to offer guided fishing trips on CDA lake as always but now are doing Lake Pend Oreille and Priest as well.  Just give our retail store a call if you are interested and we will get you and your friends or family fishing!  For a little later in the Fall Mike and Myself will also being going down to the Columbia river from about September 20th to October 20th for the Salmon run in the Vernita bridge area.

See you on the lake

Jeff Smith

Fins & Feathers

See You On The Lake

Just want to learn a little about the fish that we have in North Idaho? You can get the low down on what we have at the Fish of North Idaho page.