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Jack C. Mauer has more than a thirty year investment in fishing, floating and wading the waters of western Montana. He is intimately acquainted with the surrounding fisheries and their corresponding ecologies. It is his passion and enthusiasm for the art of fly fishing, a respect and knowledge of trout habitat, and the ability to expertly instruct the technical aspects of fly fishing that clients appreciate as they return to western Montana and Wapiti Waters. Contact Jack at 800-254-5311.

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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Lower Bitterroot River with Dan Pace

Dan Pace with a nice brown trout
It is hard boat time in the lower Bitterroot. Jack fished with Dan Pace of the Florence area and here are some photos. It was a wonderful gray day, great for fishing. I will post one, and then a slide show. To see the gallery, click on the "View Album" link.

OK, after posting this, I wanted to email the blog to Dan and to his son Garrett. I visited Garrett's website to find his email. This inspired me to add a link and some information about Garrett. Let me start by saying Garrett is a good friend (that is how we met Dan) and we have some things in common, most importantly "Music and Fishing." Below is text from Garrett's site and a link. If you love guitars, visit Garrett's site.
Welcome to ! I want to thank all of you for visiting.

My friends keep informing me that this is the lamest website on the Net. Some even insist that if Al Gore knew this was here, he would pull the plug on the whole thing!

Rest assured I continue to seek out the nicest American built instruments that I can find. Eventualy, they all end up here so that I can buy others.

Check out the minty LP Classic and Baker Jr. or the Custom Shop Brian Moore. There should be another one or two nice electrics posting later this week.

If you are looking to sell a Vintage or an American built Guitar, please drop me an email. I pay more than the other guys and I will not offer you half its value if we can work out a trade.

End of excerpt. Visit his site for

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Wade fishing on the Flathead River

Jack Mauer wade fishing in the Flathead River south of Polson - fish on, rod tip up!
Roy Loman wade fishing on the Flathead River south of Polson - throwing a nice loop
I couldn't resist posting these two photos on their own. They show how beautiful the river is and how calm it was.
Jessa Linford on a pontoon boat in the Flathead River south of Polson
OK - Let me throw this one in here, too. Jessa knows how to capitalize on the fishing.

Flathead River Slide Show

Here is the slide show. You can see all the photos by clicking the slide show and visiting the online album.

Floating the Flathead River

This eagle lives here because of the abundance of fish!
Last weekend we did a two day family float on the Flathead River from Buffalo Bridge south of Polson to Sloan's Bridge west of Ronan. The normal cubic feet per second (CFS) at this time of year is about 3200. This year it is near 10,000 CFS. The river was big, beautiful, and full of fish. Mount Calowahcan (to the left of the snow) of the Mission Mountains taken from a bit north of Sloan's BridgeThe Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes have a wonderful management program. Clean water and a healthy ecosystem are proof of that. Here are a few photos. I am preparing a slide show that I will upload soon.Jack Mauer and Sadie Linford getting ready to fish.
Visit here again soon to see the slide show. There will be photos of fish, birds, scenery, camp, cliffs, and girls and boys.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Bitterroot River - Geoff Thomas with a Cuttbow Trout, fishing with Reba, too

Geoff Thomas and Jack Mauer on the Bitterroot River in Montana
Jack fished Monday with Geoff Thomas and Mike Connell on the Bitterroot River. It was a beautiful day. The flows are still pretty good and the water temperatures are dropping which is better for the fish. On another day, Reba and Geoff Thomas fished with guide Dave Heimes. Daves photos are included in the slide show.
They have been releasing water from Painted Rocks Reservoir. Below is a message from Larry Shrock of the Montana Department of Natural Resources. If you want more information on Painted Rocks see my blog posting from earlier this month on Painted Rocks Reservoir.
Hello Everyone,
I just wanted to send out an update on the status of
contract deliveries from Painted Rocks Reservoir so far this season. The
following numbers are as of August 20th, 2008:

Total Inflows: 115 cfs
Total Outflows: 342 cfs
Reservoir Storage: 24,832 af

Contract Releases : 227 cfs
113.5 cfs Irrigation
113.5 cfs Fisheries

Releases began from the Reservoir on July 31.
Total Release from
storage 7,800 af
3900 af Irrigators
3900 af Fisheries

contact me if you have any questions.

Larry A. Schock, CFM
Water Resources Division
Missoula Regional Office
(406) 721-4284

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Anna LaCroix and her chicks, hearing is believing

Because of a wonderful medical procedure, Anna can not only see her new chicks, she can hear them. Read on...

Anna's 9 chicksAnna is the daughter of our neighbors Amy Sage and Bill LaCroix. We do a lot together as families, including some "ranching." I traded Amy a rooster for a hen this spring and the result is recorded in these photos!

Anna was born deaf and has gone through two surgeries for cochlear implants. She is what we call a Bright Light. She takes after her sister, Ruby, and brother, Levi!

A cochlear implant is a surgically-implanted electronic device that helps provide sound to a person with severe sensorineural hearing loss. This is hearing loss usually caused by damage or a defect in the inner ear. Cochlear implants bypass damaged hair cells in the inner ear and directly stimulate the auditory nerve to send information to the brAnna holding one of her chicksain.

They went to Seattle this month for the second surgery. Below is a message from her Mom.

Anna's surgery today went very well...even better than last year!
Dr. Rubenstein used a different electrode array, and got the whole thing inserted. He suspects that 18 of the 22 will be turned on! (On the right side she has 14.)
We are spending the night in the hospital with Anna , and going back to Port Townsend tomorrow.
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers everyone.
We are truly blessed (again)!
Love, Amy

Read a story about Anna published in the Missoulian last year.

To learn more about the procedure visit Cochlear Implants.

If you want to visit Montana, Amy Sage has a vacation rental of her own located on her historic (and still working) ranch, SweetSage Guest House, and she manages other vacation rentals in the valley.

Featuring the Blackfoot River & Cuttbow Trout - Mike Connell fishes with Jack Mauer of Wapiti Waters

Blackfoot River in late August 2008We have been fortunate this year. Our air has been clear with only a few small fires late in the summer. This week we are finally getting some stormy weather with moisture. These photos were taken on the Blackfoot River east of Missoula.
Mike Connell caught a beautiful Cuttbow Trout on the Blackfoot River
Mike Connell caught a nice Cuttbow Trout. Jack is holding the fish.

There are a few more photos in the slide show. You can also view the album by clicking on the slide show or the "View Album" link.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Camping on the Blackfoot River with Lyle Cunningham

Lyle Cunningham and Jack had great weather and good fishing on the Blackfoot River. Click on the photo for a larger version. I am also publishing a slide show and you can view all the photos by clicking on "View Album."

Monday, August 18, 2008

Fishing the Blackfoot River in Late August

Jack fished yesterday with Marshall Bloom and Mike Connell on a lower stretch of the Blackfoot River. It was a beautiful day, but no photos were taken. The Blackfoot is a great choice this time of year because the water is a little cooler and there are decent hatches happening. As a bonus, you can't beat the scenery.

Jack is fishing the Blackfoot River next two days with Lyle Cunningham from Arizona. They will be camping tonight and I can't wait to see photos and hear about the trip. I will be posting photos from the trip soon.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Streamside Protections: Voice your support today

Streamside Protections: Voice your support today to protect our rivers, streams, and waterfront property from the threat of too-close development. Proposed stream setbacks in western Montana counties will protect clean water, conserve wildlife habitat, and prevent flood damage and private property loss.

Now is the chance to stand up for the future of our streamsides in Missoula County. Learn more about proactive tools we can use to protect water, wildlife, and private property-- like setbacks that guide where to place new development on our rivers and streams. ... more

Blackfoot River with Bob Ratcheson

Bob Ratcheson with a fat trout on the Blackfoot River

Bob Ratcheson fishes with Jack regularly, and today Jack took him on a stretch of the Blackfoot River Bob had never fished. What a beautiful trout and stretch of the river!
Click the photo for a larger version. It is gorgeous!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Headwaters Summit to be held September 15-17, 2008 in Missoula, MT

Wapiti Waters information sharing...brown trout in shallows

Renowned environmental writer David James Duncan will open the Headwaters Summit with a keynote address titled "Being Cool: The New Key to a Compassionate Daily Life." Join us for the Headwaters Summit from September 15-17 at the University of Montana. For more information or to register, visit

Friday, August 8, 2008

Blackfoot River with 3 past Presidents of Bitterroot Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Jack Saunders caught a nice cuttbow trout. Jack Mauer is holding it.
You will see some smiling faces as Jack Saunders, Doug Nation, and Jack Mauer
spent a fun day on the Blackfoot River near Ovando, MT.
I am posting my favorite fish and scenery photo to the left. It is Jack Saunders (he caught the cuttbow trout) and Jack Mauer (holding the fish). I am also posting a slide show of 8 photos. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

West Fork of the Bitterroot will get cool water releases from Painted Rock Reservoir

Information from and email by Larry A. Schock, CFM DNRC Water Resources Division

Painted Rocks Reservoir State Park image by FWPHello Everyone,

After we make a minor electrical repair at the dam we will be making an additional release of water on Tuesday Afternoon or Wednesday.

The dam has stopped spilling so the expected release should increase the outflows from the dam by approximately 75 cfs. The Painted Rocks Dam outflows after expected to be in the 250-275 cfs range after the adjustment.

A full report will be sent out after the adjustment.

Please contact me if you have any questions.

Larry A. Schock, CFM
DNRC Water Resources Division
Missoula Regional Office
(406) 721-4284

A minor clarification: When I say the dam has stopped spilling I mean that water is no longer going over the dam's spillway, it does not mean that the flows from the dam have stopped. There is currently 181 cfs flowing out of the low level outlet conduit, and it is this flow that will be increased to the 250-275 cfs range. Larry

Click here to go to the Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks (MT FWP) site for the West Fork of the Bitterroot.
Click here to go to the MT FWP site for Painted Rocks Reservoir, Tributary of the West Fork of the Bitterroot. They have an interactive map link.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Low Flows, Hot Trout - Montana Rivers are heating up again this summer

image of Clark Fork Coalition report cover page for Low Flows, Hot Trout

Jack hasn't been with clients the last few days. He is working on a video project with Trout Unlimited. It has been really hot on the Clark Fork and it made me think about the trout trying to surive in the summer water temperatures. We, at Wapiti Waters, are concerned, especially in the Bitterroot as the flows get lower and lower. Clark Fork Coalition has great information at their website. It includes what we can do, even in our homes, to help. See an excerpt below and visit their website at

Click here for a free download of their new report, "Low Flows, Hot Trout: Climate Change in the Clark Fork Watershed." Or, order a hard copy online through the River Store for only $5.

Clark Fork Coaliton text:

We hear about climate change on a daily basis -- but it's often from a global, overarching, far-from-home perspective. So what does it all mean for the Clark Fork basin? This report explores what the future holds for inhabitants of this 22,000-square-mile area and the waterways that define its landscape, culture, and economy.

"Low Flows, Hot Trout" delivers a plain-language synthesis of key findings from years of data-gathering in our watershed blended with anecdotal observations from river basin citizens. We gathered perspectives from realtor to rancher, fishing guide to firefighter. Our report is accessible to the public, informative to those whose livelihoods are directly tied to the river, and illuminating to policymakers looking for effective responses. The bottom line is: things can be done in the face of climate change, and everyone can make a difference-- from simple at-home fixes that improve energy and water use to large-scale policy changes that stimulate renewable energy production and river-sensitive growth management. This report gives a snapshot of what we can do to protect our hometown creeks, our local economies, and our celebrated way of life in the
changing climate of the Clark Fork watershed.

We hope "Low Flows, Hot Trout," will also spark discussion at the upcoming Headwaters Summit: "Re-visioning How We Use Water in the Changing Climate of the Northern Rockies," sponsored by the Clark Fork Coalition, National Wildlife Federation, and Western Progress. The Summit will be held September 15-17 at the University of Montana, beginning with a keynote address by David James Duncan at 7 PM on September 15th in the University Theater.

If you'd like to schedule an in-person presentation of the report and its findings for your group, please contact Brianna Randall at

Montana Trout Unlimited also has a NEW! Global Warming Report.

As long as we are talking about the Clark Fork River, Milltown Dam has been removed and here is a site serving as a public information resource on the remediation, restoration and redevelopment of the Milltown Reservoir Sediments and Clark Fork River Superfund site.
Clark Fork River Technical Assistance Committee


Safety Reminder

  • Clark Fork River users must exit the river at Turah Fishing Access;

  • Blackfoot River users must exit at Weigh Station.

VIOLATORS and TRESPASSERS WILL BE FINED. For more information, contact Montana FWP at 542-5500.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Jeff Rogers - 21" Brown Trout on the Blackfoot River

As a local resident, Jeff has the good fortune of jumping on fishing opportunities when they present themselves and the dry fly fishing on the Blackfoot has been stellar. Today Jeff was fishing with Jack Mauer, Wapiti Waters Fly Fishing Montana. He caught brown trout and the last one was a 19" rainbow trout. Jeff was fishing with one of Jack's Elk Hair Caddis #12.

The Bitterroot water levels are dropping fast and it is warming up. It is a bit longer drive but Jack is loving the Blackfoot and the Big Hole right now.