Where to Fish Mckinley Lake


McKinley Lake is a moderate-sized (15.8 acres), remote glacial cirque lake located within designated Wilderness in the Rattlesnake Creek drainage near Missoula at ~6,860 ft elevation. In order to increase storage volume, the lake has been artificially impounded by a dam at the outlet. This structure elevates the normal surface water elevation, but may also increase annual water level fluctuations.

Size 15.8 acres
Elevation 6860.0 ft.
Directions Although this lake is geographically close to the city of Missoula, access is difficult. There are several USFS routes from which to choose. Route distance and difficulty vary, but all require non-motorized travel. Common starting points are the trailheads at West Fork Gold Creek (Trail # 52), Ravine Creek in lower Grant Creek (Trail # 34), or in lower Rattlesnake Creek at the main Rattlesnake National Recreation Area trailhead (Gated Road #99). Please refer to USFS maps for specific travel routes and connecting trail numbers. Total travel distance from trailheads to lake ranges from 8-16 miles.
Status of the Fishery
Township/Range/Section 15N 18W 31
Latitude/Longitude 47.01789 -113.92142
FWP Region Region 2 
County Missoula
Fishing District Western
Click on rows to select them for use in other tabs.
Waterbody Section Field Form Type Date Purpose Species
For Comparative analysis all Length Units are millimeters : all Weights are grams
Species Count Avg StdDev Min Max AvgWgt StdDevWgt MinWeight S/L Sects Surveys Waterbody
For Comparative analysis all Length Units are millimeters : all Weights are grams
Waterbody Section Species Count AveLength StdDevLength MinLength MaxLength AveWeight StdDevWeight MinWeight MaxWeight
For Comparative analysis all Length Units are millimeters : all Weights are grams
Waterbody Year Section Species Count AveLength StdDevLength MinLength MaxLength AveWeight StdDevWeight MinWeight MaxWeight
This is a preview, all fields will be visible by selecting a download option

Id Fcs Id Fnd Id Species Year Species Abbrv Length Weight M/C Count Sex Mort Hook Scar Disease Scales Otolith Fin Clip Tag Comment Genetics Age Stomach Intercept Slope Gear Equipment Trip Date Pass/Run Water Section Lat/Down Lon/Down Lat/Up Lon/Up

View the latest Montana Fishing Regulations.

There is no fish consumption advisory for this waterbody.