Fishing Season: Year Round (Prime: June 1 - October 31)

Kootenai River - MT

Fishing Outlook & Conditions

Water Temp:


Linehan Outfitting's Tip of the Week

Dry fly fishing is perfectly good right now throughout the entire day. Big bugs and droppers are still in play to some degree but small dries like parachutes on 5x are trending right now as well.

Directions open in app

Map of Kootenai River

Water Flow Data

Orvis-Endorsed guides nearby

Linehan Outfitting Company

5-Day Outlook as of 10/2/23

Expect rain and cooler temps through mid-week and then general clearing on Saturday with partly sunny conditions and daytime temps in the 60s through early next week. Also, expect flows to start dropping around October 1.

Techniques & Tips as of 10/2/23


Local Species Available Year Round (Prime: June 1 - October 31)

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    westlope cutthroat

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    bull trout

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    mountain whitefish

Linehan Outfitting's Recommended Fly Patterns

"Must-have" fly fishing patterns in descending order of importance:

Name: Colors: Size(s):
Adam's Purple Parachute standard 14
Tunghead Pheasant Tail standard 14
Vernille San Juan Worm tan 12
Royal Wulff standard 14
Pat's stonefly brown 10
purple chubby purple 12
TH Duracell Jig standard 14,16,18
Tunghead Soft Hackle Pheasant Tail standard 16
big bunny streamers white, red, black 6
white circus peanut white 6

Adam's Purple Parachute

Tie on this deadly purple parachute dry fly to show trout something unique.

Linehan Outfitting's Recommended Gear

Description: About Kootenai River

Linehan Outfitting Company and the Kootenai River are located in the far Northwest corner of Montana. The Kootenai River runs through the towns of Libby and Troy before heading into Idaho where it turns north and flows back into Canada. This is not typical big sky country. Instead this is a place where the Pacific rainforest ecosystem crashes into the spine of the northern Rockies. It's a place still off the beaten path and a place where you can stand in a riffle at dark and have the whole place to yourself. The Kootenai is a big tailwater fishery and below Libby Dam we have about thirty miles of fishable water. Rainbows averaging 12"-16" on dry flies are pretty much the name of the game here throughout the season as well as the possibility of a huge bull trout if you feel like throwing bugs bunny all day. The Kootenai is big and broad and most efficiently fished from a drift boat in classic float/wade style and access to mid-stream islands and riffles provides easy wading in prime locations.

Nearest Airport:

Missoula, MT, Kalispell, MT, or Spokane, WA


midge, caddis, PMDs, hoppers, ants, crane flies

Best Time to Fish:

During daylight hours

Best Stretch:

The entire river is good shape and all stretches are fishing well.

Best Access:

All access points and launches are in great shape.