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Trout Catch & Release Information

At we encourage catch and release fishing. If you want a few for your table, so be it, but the information here will help the ones you don't keep survive to fight another day. The idea of catching a 20 inch rainbow trout, and subsequently releasing it to be caught another day feels right to us.

Our research tells us that anglers keep about 40% of the fish they catch. The other 60% are released back into the water. According to our research, up to 25% of the released fish can die from not being handled correctly. Proper handling techniques are as important as your fishing gear in our opinion, which is why we bring this information to you.

We urge anglers to follow these simple rules to increase the survival rate of released fish.
Especially on wild rivers, such as the Swan River.

Handling Fish and Trout during a catch and release:

 What to do:

  1. If at all possible, leave the fish in the water and unhook it without touching it (use your hemostats or pliers).

  2. If you must handle the fish, make sure that you wet your hands. This is especially true with trout fishing.

  3. Gently hold the fish with two wet hands and get it back into the water as quickly as possible

  4. If you're river fishing, point the fish into the current while it breathes.

  5. Support it gently into the current until it swims out of your hands

What not to do:

  1. Squeeze a fish

  2. Throw a fish back into the water like an unused piece of live bait

  3. Put your fingers into the gills

  4. Let the fish flop around on the ground

JRW ~ Quality products for fishermen from Northwest Montana
432 East Idaho, Suite #C251 Kalispell, MT 59901