Browns Lake is a shallow lake in an open sagebrush area and therefore unique among western Montana’s lakes. Public camping facilities, including toilets and a boat ramp, are available at the south end of the lake. There is also a small boat launch area on the northwest side of the lake. In the summer, fishing at the lake is evenly split between trolling and shorefishing. Trolling is best done using weighted flies such as Wooly Worms and standard spoons and spinners. Shore anglers generally prefer bait such as worms, maggots, marshmallows, and cheese, although some anglers use artificial spinning lures and small spoons. Local anglers report a good summertime catch averaging three rainbow trout weighing between 1 and 3 pounds. Late spring usually produces some nice 3- to 5-pound rainbow in the 20-inch range. Browns Lake really comes alive once the ice forms in winter. It seems to have a special attraction for Missoula anglers. Ice-fishing usually is very good for 1- to 3-pound rainbows and even an occasional brook or brown trout.
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