Take in a Local Creek - Big Spring Creek and Warm Spring Creeks

Lakes and ponds are great, but there’s just something magical about a trout stream. And Central Montana is blessed with an abundance of them. From Beaver and Cottonwood creeks in the Snowies to Yogo Creek and the forks of the Judiths in the Little Belts, to Big Spring and Warm Spring, creeks are a great place for young and old alike.

Big Spring Creek

Big Spring Creek is the third largest freshwater spring in the world and bubbles to the earth’s surface in the foothills between the Judith and Big Snowy Mountains. Big Spring Creek originates six miles south of Lewistown and runs almost twenty-six miles to where it joins the Judith River. It is a stream of extraordinary beauty and it is a superb fishery. It is open to year round fishing and is fishable when many other streams are blown out from runoff. Big Spring Trout Hatchery and the CM Russell Wildlife Refuge are also popular attractions.

Big Spring Creek,  lewistown, MT

Big Spring Creek is the source of Lewistown's water supply and is a highly productive trout stream. The water surfaces at 52 degrees F. enclosing the large spring at the head of the creek, giant willows and cottonwoods shade a park and wildlife viewing area. From the spring, cold, high-quality water flows over green mats of water plants and down between birches, willow, hawthorne, native shrubs and grasses. Above Lewistown, Big Spring Creek aver-ages 38 feet wide, 18 inches deep, and below to the mouth, 45 feet wide, 24 inches deep. Big Spring Creek attracts large numbers of wildlife, including waterfowl and fur-bearers. Big Spring Creek is a catch and release fishing stream and is open all year round.

Spring Creek Campground is also in a beautiful area that is located directly off the banks of spring creek. The smell of the fresh spring water and the cool mountain air is sure to melt away all of your stress, so come and forget the world and just relax at this quiet and luxurious place. There are 10 campsites all of which can accommodate RVs and trailers, however there is a maximum length limit of 22 feet. There is a per night fee but no reservations are required. There is a 14 day stay limit. The public can cut Christmas trees, gather firewood, hunt for big game, fish our streams, and find many other activities in this diverse area of public land.

Warm Spring

On a hot summer day, you may also want to check out Warm Springs, a natural, pristine spring that runs at a constant 68 degrees. It’s just 15 miles northwest of Lewistown. To get there, drive 9.5 miles north of Lewistown on US Highway 191, turn left at State Highway 81 and drive about 5 miles, then turn right at the Warm Springs sign.

Warm Spring,  lewistown, MT

The Warm Spring District is located about 11 to 15 miles northeast of Lewistown near the headwaters of Warm Spring and Ford Creeks. Warm Spring Creek is 862 deeded acres, 25 miles Northwest of Lewistown. Log Cabin with Nice Yard Area. One mile of Warm Spring Creek. The first gold strike occurred in the spring of 1880. By June additional discoveries were being worked on Maiden Creek, Alpine Creek, Warm Spring Creek and Ford Creek.

Spring Creek is a state fishing access site along Big Spring Creek. Day use only site. Two sites approximately 1 mile apart; both are signed. Excellent for Tent Camping, Fishing, Stream Fishing. Spring Creek Fishing Access Site is located 3 miles south of Lewistown.

The Warm Spring District contains several small mining communities: Andersonville, Maiden, New Year and Gilt Edge were the most significant while Alpine and Rustle were of lesser stature. The mine was discovered just west of the divide between Warm Springs and Maiden Creeks in 1881 and worked until 1899. Fishermen will find a variety of fish including brown trout, redear sunfish and bull trout here. So grab your favorite fly fishing rod and reel, and head out to Warm Spring Creek.

Spring Creek Campground
Lewis and Clark National Forest
1101 15th Street N.
P.O. Box 1806
Great Falls, Montana 59405
Website: http://www.fs.fed.us/r1/lewisclark/

Spring Creek Trout Hatchery
140 Trout Ln, Lewistown, MT 59457
Tel: (406) 538-3538

Big Springs Trout Hatchery
The Big Springs Trout Hatchery provides cutthroat, rainbow, and brown trout, and kokanee salmon to locations all over Montana. The hatchery holds its maximum number of fish in the spring - up to 2 million at that time. The show pond features fish as large as 15 pounds. Take short walks around the hatchery to see Big Spring Creek rising from the ground and to see waterfowl (look for wood ducks in the summer), white-tailed deer, muskrats, beavers, eagles, and belted kingfishers. Viewing is open from daylight to dusk year-round.
Big Springs Trout Hatchery
2035 Fish Hatchery Road, Lewistown, MT 59457
Tel: 406-538-5588
http://fwp.mt.gov/

Spring Creek Trout Hatchery
Upper Spring Crk (2.8mi)
Lewistown, MT 59457
Phone: (406) 538-3538

Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge
Extending 125 airline miles up the Missouri River from Fort Peck Dam in north-central Montana, the Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge contains approximately 1,100,000 acres, including the 245,000-acre Fort Peck Reservoir. The Refuge includes native prairies, forested coulees, river bottoms, and badlands so often portrayed in the paintings of Charlie Russell, the colorful western artist for whom the refuge is named. The handicap accessible hunting blind located in the Sand Creek unit is not available this hunting season due to damage associated with spring flooding. Also anticipate renovation of the trail and blind to be completed prior to the 2012 season.
Charles M. Russell National Wildlife Refuge
P.O. Box 110, Airport Road, Lewistown, Montana 59457
Phone: (406) 538-8706
Fax: (406) 538-7521
Email: c...@fws.gov
http://www.fws.gov/cmr

Spring Creek
Montana Department of Fish Wildlife and Parks, Great Falls, MT 59405
Montana Department of Fish Wildlife and Parks website: http://fwp.mt.gov/default.html

Outfitters:
Don’s Sports and Western Store, 120 2nd Ave. South, (406) 538-9408 or toll free, Tel: (800) 879-8194.
The Sports Center, 320 W. Main Street, Tel: 406-535-9308
David Stuver, Stuver Outfitting, a local guide and fishing instructor. Tel: (406) 538-5708, e-mail, dstu...@midrivers.com
Karl Gies, local fisherman, Tel: (406) 538-8503, e-mail, skyl...@midrivers.com