By Robert Lucke
When Doug Komrosky stands on a knoll above Beaver Creek Reservoir, he can see the lake all right, plus pavilions, beaches, picnic tables and trees all over. That is his vision, and he might just be the person to get that done.
Komrosky's organization is Walleyes Unlimited. He is the treasurer.
"What I can see is having a reservoir that is aimed at the people of Hill County," Komrosky said. "I would like Beaver Creek Reservoir to be more available.
"Think of all the people who use the reservoir now," he added. "Perch, walleye, trout, pike fishermen, tubers, and in the winter, they spear fish."
From his first time at Beaver Creek Reservoir when he arrived in Havre in 1987, Komrosky realized the place was magical.
"When I first moved here, I came from Whitefish where we all listened to loons," Komrosky said. "The first time I went to Beaver Creek Reservoir, there was a loon. That was a neat place to be. Trout were jumping, people fishing off the beach, sun going down. Nothing wrong with that."
Komrosky is a Glasgow native who arrived in Havre in a round-about way.
"I graduated from Glasgow High School in 1973 and started college at the University of Montana in Missoula," Komrosky said. "In 1974, I joined the Marine Corps and was in until 1978. I got out and went back to UM. I ended up working full time for the National Guard. I worked for the Guard until September of 1997. I retired from the Guard out of Havre and just stayed."
Komrosky's friends wonder why he stayed here.
"I have literally lived all over the world. You know, here the wind blows. It is colder than hell and it snows," Komrosky said with a laugh. "But I like the people. Here is an example. I lived for a while in Kalispell and never even got to meet the people across the street. When we moved to Havre, we were not here for two weeks when the neighborhood had a block party for us. We didn't forget that.
"One time, someone was complaining that there was no shopping in Havre. I wrote a letter to the editor saying that Havre has a lot of things. I slam dunked them," he said, still chuckling over the matter.
Komrosky's club, the Walleyes, has done a lot of work at Fresno Reservoir and thinks it could do that much more at Beaver Creek Reservoir.
"When I first came here, there was a community pavilion at Fresno," he said. "Fresno is not a community center for Hill County. But Beaver Creek Reservoir could be a community center. One problem, though people are afraid to build due to vandals. We have kicked around for three years, now, building a pavilion at Fresno on the beach near the caretaker's cabin. I just don't know how you address that vandalism problem."
Komrosky's vision extends further for Beaver Creek Reservoir.
"Beaver Creek Reservoir should be a hub of community recreation," he said. "But we've got to go a long ways. If we can't provide amenities out there, what good is it but to raise cows?"
Kids and fishing are a natural for Beaver Creek Reservoir.
"A whole lot of kids in this town can't go fishing off a boat," Komrosky said. "At Beaver Creek Reservoir, perch, walleye, trout can be caught right off the bank. It affords kids a great opportunity."
Groups built so much of Beaver Creek Park. That tradition could continue at the reservoir, Komrosky thinks.
"Look at the organizations that built Kiwanis Park. Organizations have done great things," Komrosky said. "Boy Scouts did a great job. Rotary Park is another. All organizations get things going out there that would normally never get done. I am leaving out some organizations, but without all of them, what would you see in Beaver Creek Park?"
Walleyes Unlimited wants to be part of Beaver Creek Park.
"Walleyes Unlimited Club has offered to help," Komrosky said. "Maybe we can provide the park board with ideas, if they don't provide us with any. The walleye club is known for its ability to react. I like being a part of that. I don't like all that discussion. You can discuss things to death."
And maybe in the future there could be a Walleye Park, such as Rotary Park, only at Beaver Creek Reservoir.
"Walleye Park," Komrosky said. "Maybe. Our focus has been Fresno. But kids, adults and fishing, if it is at Fresno or happens to include Beaver Creek, that is fine, too. Think of this: What is more important, cows eating or kids fishing? I'll debate that all day long."
Much of Komrosky's work centers around teaching kids to fish. He is involved in everything from sixth-graders learning all about Fresno waters to sponsoring kid and adult walleye fishing tournaments.
He says it is for a selfish reason. If he can take as many fishing as possible now, maybe when he is old and feeble, someone will return the favor.
Doug Komrosky keeps his eye on Beaver Creek Reservoir and keeps dreaming his dreams.
And by the way, Doug Komrosky recently was honored as one of only two professional walleye fishermen in the state of Montana. Someone should warn the walleye!