It’s spring, both by the calendar and by the weather here in Bozeman, MT. In fact, for most of the west it’s been spring for several weeks. Not so much for our anglers in the upper Midwest and the east where winter just keeps hanging on. But today, March 22, it’s in the 60s in Montana with a blazing sun that on your face feels like 80—a little elevation will do that. It’s a sensation that’s a perfect reminder of summer at Scott Lake. Its’ just around the corner. Flip a couple of pages of the calendar and we will all be packing our gear. While it is over a thousand miles north of Bozeman, our island in the middle of Scott Lake is getting some nice sun as well. It’s in the 20s at Stony Rapids, 50 miles south of Scott, with a forecast of above freezing for the next week. That may not sound impressive unless you have clear memories of being at Scott in March with temperatures of 40 degrees BELOW zero. Since our ice out depends almost entirely on the temperatures in May, there will be no break up predictions yet. But above freezing sure beats 40 below, like 70 degrees worth.
For all of the Scott Lake Lodge team (and I suspect more than a few Scott customers), the trip to Scott Lake is the emotional peak of the year—sort of the Christmas gift that you never got as a kid. For our staff the lake is home: Scott Lake Lodge employees are like loons (and that’s a good thing). They scatter to warm climates for the winter but return to their home lake every year—for the clean, clear water, the abundant fish and the serenity. We know the feathered loons will be back in June and it looks like nearly all of our staff will be returning as well. Our General Manager, Jason Hamilton, has done a tremendous job rounding up our crew and bringing back a highly motivated and experienced group. Despite rumors of early retirements, every guide on the island last summer will be back in their boats on June 10. And we even dug up an extra one: long time vet Greg Hamm is returning after spending a few years as an electrician, working in a potash mine west of Saskatoon. A customer and staff favorite, Greg will get a big welcome this summer. He will be trading electric lighting a mile underground for the 20 hours of daylight on the 60th parallel—a very good trade indeed.


Jason Hamilton hasn’t been the only Scott Lake Lodge employee busy over the winter. Between his ice fishing trips, Sales Manager Jon Wimpney has been systemically filling up the lodge for the 2015 season. And his work is almost done. There are only a few spots left, all in the last two groups of the season. It’s been a terrific booking year for the lodge, so good that a number of people are already lining up to get their fishing vacations for 2016. It’s always been lodge policy to offer our customers the right of first refusal—they can reserve their week, cabin and guide for the following season. We don’t book anyone a year ahead. Even though we get a very high percentage of guests who book at the lodge for the next season before they leave the island, we do get some openings as each week of the season passes. A trip to Scott has always been a hot ticket, but for 2016 those tickets will be red hot. If you want a trip to Scott for 2016, especially if you have your eye on a spot in June or July, give Jon Wimpney a call today at 306/209-7150. Some things are worth the wait: a trip to Scott Lake Lodge is one of those things.


We are pleased to announce the winners of this year’s Scott Lake Lodge video contest. Contestants had to produce a two minute video about their trip to Scott. With titles and graphics right out of Star Wars, Texan Todd Lee captured the top prize—a free fly out for two to Ivanhoe Lake, one Scott’s premier pike lakes. With great scenes of shallow water sight fishing for pike, including some memorable takes, Doug Roche, Jr. grabbed second place and won a Simms full back logo guide shirt. The Guide’s Choice award was taken home by Samara Moulopoulos. She gets a collection of sure-fire pike lures. Take a look at the three videos in our video contest channel on Vimeo.


After reviewing the customer evaluations from the 2014 season, it was clear that our experiment with a downtown hotel (even a first class hotel) just didn’t pan out. Most of our guests wanted to be close to the airport on the night before their flight back to civilization. And guess what? A beautiful new hotel, a Courtyard Marriott, opened up this winter in Saskatoon within sight of the airport (about a mile). It’s the perfect fit for our customer’s needs. It will be a very quick ride to the airport in the morning. And it’s a great hotel with a sit down restaurant and many amenities. Just go to their website to get all the details.