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Fishing Canyon Ferry Lake

AKA: Canyon Ferry Reservoir

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By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Fish species to fish for...

Guide to fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, brook trout, brown trout, bluegill, pumpkinseed sunfish, yellow perch and northern pike at Canyon Ferry Lake in Montana.

Canyon Ferry Lake, MT

Considerable, annual stocking of trout make Canyon Ferry Lake a favorite of trout anglers in the west-central part of Montana. This 33,500-acre lake is known for fertile water supporting healthy populations of many fish species.

Lake Video

Canyon Ferry Lake, located near Helena, Montana, is a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts due to its diverse fish populations and extensive fishing opportunities. The lake covers over 26,000 acres and stretches across the Missouri River, offering anglers a vast expanse of water to explore.

One of the most sought-after fish species in Canyon Ferry Lake is walleye. This predatory fish is abundant in the lake and provides exciting angling opportunities. Anglers often target walleye using techniques such as trolling with crankbaits, jigging with live bait or artificial lures, and casting near underwater structures. Canyon Ferry Lake has gained a reputation for producing trophy-sized walleye, making it a favorite among anglers seeking a challenging catch.

Rainbow trout is another popular fish species in Canyon Ferry Lake. The lake receives regular trout stockings, ensuring a healthy population for anglers to pursue. Anglers can target rainbow trout using various methods, including trolling with spoons or spinners, casting with bait or lures, or fly fishing. The abundance of rainbow trout makes Canyon Ferry Lake an attractive destination for both novice and experienced anglers.

Canyon Ferry Lake is also home to other fish species, including yellow perch, northern pike, and smallmouth bass. Yellow perch provide excellent opportunities for anglers seeking a delicious meal, while northern pike and smallmouth bass offer thrilling battles. These fish can be targeted using a range of techniques such as casting with jigs or crankbaits, using live bait, or fly fishing.

Anglers visiting Canyon Ferry Lake should be aware of fishing regulations and licensing requirements. It's important to practice responsible fishing, including following catch limits and size restrictions, as well as practicing catch-and-release when appropriate, to ensure the sustainability of the fish populations and the preservation of the lake's ecosystem.

Canyon Ferry Lake's diverse fish species, breathtaking scenery, and ample fishing and boating opportunities make it a beloved destination for anglers in Montana. Whether it's chasing walleye, casting for trout, or enjoying the thrill of reeling in northern pike, Canyon Ferry Lake provides an unforgettable fishing experience in the heart of Montana's scenic beauty.

In addition to trout, bass, sunfish, perch and pike are popular with fishing enthusiasts. 76 miles of shoreline wrap this fishing gem, which is a 27-mile long reservoir on the Missouri River. Numerous locations around the lake provide access for fishing from the bank near picnic areas, hiking trails and campgrounds. In winter, once the ice is safe, there is excellent ice fishing for trout and perch. There are five boat launch ramps for all size boats from canoes and kayaks to fishing, pleasure and pontoon boats. Marinas, stores and other amenities offer virtually everything necessary for enjoying a day, or an extended vacation at Canyon Ferry Reservoir. Boat rentals, camping and lodging are all available at the lake.

Fishing Boats For Rent In Montana

Primary fish species residing in Canyon Ferry Lake

Click images for fishing tips and details about each species.

Largemouth bass Smallmouth bass Rainbow trout Cutthroat trout Brook trout Brown trout Bluegill Pumpkinseed Sunfish Yellow Perch Northern pike

Canyon Ferry Lake Amenities

Marina: YES
Boat Rental: YES
Boat Launch Ramp: YES
Campgrounds: YES
RV Hookups: YES
Lodging: YES
Convenience Store: YES
Bait & Tackle: YES
Restaurant: YES

Today's Weather & Forecast

Boating is a popular activity on Canyon Ferry Lake, with multiple boat ramps available for anglers to launch their boats. The lake's expansive size and open waters provide ample space for boating enthusiasts to explore different areas and access prime fishing spots. Whether it's trolling for walleye or leisurely cruising the lake's scenic shorelines, boating enhances the fishing experience on Canyon Ferry Lake.

Fishing Boat Rentals

Goose Bay Marina & Campground
Rentals: Kayaks
406 266-3065

Public Boat Launch Ramps & Landings

Goose Bay Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, east side, off Goose Bay Lane, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

Hellgate Gulch Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the northeast section of the lake, off Hellgate Canyon Road, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and gravel parking.

Shannon Boat Launch Ramp
Located at the north end of the lake, off County Road 284, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and gravel parking.

Silos Boat Launch Ramp
Located in the southwest section of the lake, off Silos Road, this is a four-lane, concrete ramp with docks and gravel parking.

White Earth Campground Boat Launch Ramp
Located mid lake, west side, off Beaver Creek Road, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and gravel parking.


Goose Bay Marina & Campground
300 Goose Bay Lane
Townsend, MT 59644
406 266-3065

Kim's Marina & Resort
8015 Canyon Ferry Road
Helena, MT - 59602
406 475-3723

The Silos Marina & Campground
82 Silos Road
Townsend MT 59644
406 980-0266

Click here for a Montana Fishing License.

Camping opportunities can be found in several campgrounds surrounding Canyon Ferry Lake, offering convenient access to fishing spots and stunning views of the lake and surrounding landscape. These campgrounds provide amenities such as picnic areas, restrooms, and boat ramps, ensuring a comfortable stay for anglers and their families.

Campgrounds & RV Parks Nearby

Court Sheriff Campground - 406 475-3921

Riverside Campground - 406 475-3921

Hellgate Campground - 406 475-3921

Coulter Campground - 406 449-5201

Silos Campground - 406 266-3100

Townsend Campground - 406 266-3100

Roadrunner RV Park - 406 266-4991

Canyon Ferry Lake MT Map - Fishing & Camping Areas

Contact Information

Canyon Ferry Lake
Kim's Marina & Resort
8015 Canyon Ferry Rd
Helena, MT 59602
406 475-3723


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