The Thompson Lakes consist of three separate and distinct lakes that lie just off Highway 2 mid-way between Kalispell and Libby in northwest Montana. All the lakes offer very good fishing and receive fairly heavy fishing pressure from the locals. Both spin fishing and fly fishing work well on the Thompson Lakes.

The lakes are relatively small, making these lakes ideal spots to fish from shore, a small boat, inflatable fishing raft, inflatable fishing kayak or pontoon boat. A float tube can also work provided the winds are relatively calm, which they usually are.

All three of the lakes (Upper, Middle and Lower) provide excellent fishing for largemouth bass. Since the lakes are small, they warm quickly, allowing excellent top water fly fishing during July-September. Additionally, large streamers skipped along the bottom in shallow water and along the weed line also work well for catching the larger bass. As the bass in these lakes average 1-3 pounds, some fairly stout gear and leaders are required, especially when fishing for largemouth bass in the weeds.

Middle Thompson Lake is just a short hop from the other two lakes, and receives the heaviest fishing pressure. The lake is 560 acres in size. A very nice fishing access site lies right along the highway. Unlike the other two Thompson Lakes, Middle Thompson Lake has decent populations of rainbow and brown trout, with rainbow trout stocked most years by the Montana FW. The rainbow and brown trout are best fished around the various creek inlets on the lake with small dry flies.

Other fish in Middle Thompson Lake include brook trout, cutthroat trout, pike, perch and, of course, largemouth bass.

Overall, the three Thompson Lakes are excellent spots for an angler who is either in search of quality fly fishing for largemouth bass or who is just tired of battling finicky trout and want to try their luck against the aggressive nature of a bass. Access is excellent on all three lakes and several nice fishing access sites provide easy camping.

Photographs of Thompson Lakes

Montana Lakes