Chased (Chase) and his friend Rod and I planned to fish the North Platte together last week. This would be a second fishing trip together, as we had floated the Bighorn last April for three days together. They were planning on driving over on Wed, but I wanted to go early so I left the house Sunday morning and started the trip by camping at the Miracle Mile until they got their, then we all shared a cabin in Alcova, WY for the rest of the week. I hauled the drift boat all the way over to Casper, but one look at the Grey Reef convinced me that we would be better off wade fishing as the river was still pretty weeded up and the winds were blowing in the high 30 mph range. If you have ever drifted from the dam down to the first takeout called Lusby you will know what I'm talking about. It seems like every time I go over there the wind blows straight up river and the last 1 1/2 miles of the float the river seems like it has stopped, so you have to row to move forward and with a stiff wind you're in for a real workout to reach the takeout. This was a first camping trip to the mile for me. When I got their the skies were clear, it was warm out, but the wind was howling. I found a spot where I could pitch the tent tight up against some bushes and found some rocks to place inside the tent to keep it in place. Later I discovered that if you camp closer to the dam the adjacent bluffs help buffer some of the wind so I will keep that in mind on the next trip. I spent Sun, Mon and Tues at the mile, then moved the camp to the dam Tues night. Wed afternoon I met up with Chase and Rod and we moved into a cabin just around the corner from the Alcova convenience store, this turned out to be a very wise choice because we were about to get hit with a blizzard Thurs evening. When we got up Friday morning we had about a foot of snow on the ground and the wind was howling like crazy. We stayed in the cabin until about 1 pm waiting for the storm to move off to the northeast, then hit the Grey Reef right at the dam. The wind had switched directions so the dam was providing a nice buffer to stay out of the wind and help stay warm. I had a long sleeve shirt, two sweaters, a light coat and my wading jacket on plus the waders so I was comfortable in the winter like conditions and it turned out we were the only ones out. When we first got on the water, a couple locals came down to the water, took one look and left. We had some great fishing that afternoon so that really helped keep everyone warm and not thinking about the cold, but we all were getting pretty chilled as the sun started going down so getting back to the cabin and getting some hot coffee was on everyone's agenda. Hwy 220 going west was closed so I decided to stay a couple extra days until I was sure the roads were all clear and didn't leave until Sun morning. The drive back to Pinedale was pretty much all on dry roads except for a few slick spots were the wind was blowing the snow across the roadway. Overall this was a great fishing trip despite the winter storm, we all had a fantastic time, caught some great Wyoming trout. Here are some photos of the scenery, I'll post a second post with some of the fish we landed. Rod landed the biggest trout of the trip, so hopefully he will email the photo to Chase so we can add that to the post.
My camp on the mile, notice how tight I had the tent up against the bushes:
Scenery before the big storm hit Wyoming:
Sunrise on the mile:
The area after the storm, this was about a day and half later:
Chase fishing with all his winter gear on:
Photo of Rod enjoying a day on the water:
Chase putting the long rod to work:
Landed a Walleye on a fly rod, it wasn't very big but certainly a surprise and a first for me:
Here is another first for me, landed this Mirror Carp on a 5 wt rod while trout fishing. My net is just over 20 inches on the inside length.