A man waist deep in water holding a silver fish and his fishing rod

Sportfish in the reservoir include yellow perch and largemouth bass. In order to protect migratory birds, the Refuge has prohibited the use lead sinkers or lead-based lures. Casting and wading are the only means to fish the open water as flotation devices and boats are not allowed on the reservoir. Anglers are restricted from accessing the off shore islands, as these are important nesting areas.

In accordance with State law and the Joint State/Tribal Agreement, anglers must possess a joint Flathead Reservation Use and Conservation Permit and Fishing Stamp. For limits, seasons and other regulations, refer to theFlathead Indian Reservation Fishing Regulations.

To fulfill the Refuge’s mission, access is restricted during different seasons to provide security for birds. The entire refuge is closed during migratory waterfowl hunting season (typically early October to early January). After waterfowl season, ice fishing is permitted on the full refuge until the end of February. People who choose to ice fish should use caution and know the ice conditions. From March 1 - July 15, fishing is permitted only in Area 1.  From July 15 until the start of waterfowl season, the entire refuge again opens to fishing.

Ninepipe Family Fishing Pondis open to all anglers and is located on Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks lands adjacent to Ninepipe NWR at the Watchable Wildlife Viewing Site off Highway 93. The pond is open to family fishing but all adults (anglers 15 years and older) are required to release their catch.

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