Posts Tagged ‘Snake river cutthroat trout’

Wyoming Fly Fishing-Adventure after Adventure

The “Cowboy” state has some of the finest river’s to fly fish in the world. This past summer I left my home in Utah several times to explore new water in a state that I hadn’t spent much time in before. In the middle of the summer my friend Derek, my Uncle Kimble, and I met up for an unforgettable trip which included fly fishing in Yellowstone, and some of the amazing tributaries of the Snake River around Jackson Hole.

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The rivers we fished had an abundance of golden stonefly exuviae laying on the surrounding rocks. There must have been a great hatch a month or so earlier, and unsurprisingly fish still keyed in on stonefly nymphs without hesitation.


Wyoming is home to some of the most scenic rivers in the west. Looking at these images gets me excited for summer to return.

Lickety Split Fly Pattern

Once again the Lickety Split in both brown and black fished very well. For deeper holes, the Rowley Stone was also a favorite.


Cutthroat trout are known for their willingness to rise to dry flies, but the three of us love Euro Nymphing and fished this method to the many cutthroat trout we came across. Not surprisingly, we were very successful covering the water with such an effective nymphing technique.

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Wyoming is not only home to worldclass fly fishing, but most of Yellowstone and its amazing wildlife as well. We were lucky enough to cross paths with buffalo, as well as a handful of gigantic moose (including the big bull in the video and picture above). It was truly a trip to remember.

Wyoming Cutthroat and Tungsten

I live roughly two hours away from excellent fishing in Wyoming, forty minutes away from great Idaho water, and of course my home waters of Utah. Of these three, Wyoming is the one that I have dedicated the least amount of time to. What I’ve learned recently however is Southwest Wyoming has more phenomenal water than I had originally thought. I’ve been up there twice in the last week and a half, and with a two day ~fish till you drop~ trip planned for next weekend, I’m making my way to the tip of the Wyoming Fly Fishing Iceberg, and loving every minute of my climb.

We’ve camped 20 minutes from this beautiful Wyoming river for years, never once venturing with our nymphs into the deep to find what hidden gems exist. With fins and cutt marks as bright as emeralds, I dare say we will return often in the future.

Although known for their willingness to rise to dries, we decided to nymph the pocket water. My Uncle Kimble has a love for fishing heavy tungsten in deep trout filled waters. Some of the largest fish of the trip were caught drifting near the bottom of walking speed, belly deep water. Looking back, I’m not surprised. Perfect big fish water.

Like many neighboring streams, it appears a decent salmonfly hatch occurred here just weeks before we fished it. One sign of salmonfly exuviae and out comes the Rowley Stone. It dominated the pocket water. Once again, not surprised.

Smiley, the Snake River Cutthroat. The trout ranged from 5 inches to 17, all with unique beauty of their own. The most successful flies were the Two-toned Surveyor, Rowley Stone, Lickety Split, Frenchie, and the Black Jack. Anyone surprised? If so, it’s probably because you’ve never fished these flies. Tie one on once, and there’s no denying their deadliness.

One of the highlight of the trip was when a cow moose and her baby crossed the stream just 20 yards downstream of us. What we didn’t know was that daddy was close behind. Just seconds after the mothers crossing we noticed one of the largest bull moose I have ever seen emerge from the riparian veg. He briefly smelled our way, and after a short minute he followed in the cows footsteps crossing the river and once again disappearing into the green foliage. Of course my camera was buried deep in my pack, but a snapshot of their crossing is etched in my memory for good.

As we ventured 20 miles or so upstream we found the size of the stream to diminish, but the size of the fish and my admiration for this stream did not. I soon will return to continue my exploration of Wyoming streams that I yet to fish. ┬áIf it continues to amaze me I won’t really be surprised. Perfect trout water far and wide.

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