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Old 08-22-2013, 12:21 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

awesome. thanks so much for sharing, and good luck out there!
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Old 08-22-2013, 12:55 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

My god, there really is something in the water up there in the Winds. Such huge, brilliantly-colored fish... simply amazing.

Question: Do you weight your scud patterns?
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Old 08-22-2013, 04:48 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

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Originally Posted by stenacron View Post
Question: Do you weight your scud patterns?
I buy the scud pattern from Rich Osthoff in Wisconsin. He specifically designed his scuds for high altitude lakes and deep cruising trout. He affectionately calls his years of fishing the Rocky Mtn backcountry before he developed his scud as BS - Before Scud. He calls it the Fast-Sinking Scud. He ties the FS Scud with weighted wire to enhance the sink rate.

When I arrive to a high country lake and see cruising trout, I immediately tie on a FS Scud whether the fish are feeding on top or not. I don't care if I'm fishing brookies, cutts, or goldens..........they all ravage Osthoff's scud patterns. All you gotta do is let them see it. When you spot a cruiser, no matter how deep, just drop the scud anywhere in the trout's path. If the trout doesn't immediately see it, just give the fly a little twitch to give the trout an opportunity to see it. When the fish spots the fly, they immediately swim over to investigate. Sometimes, spotting conditions are so good on high lakes, you can visibly see the trout take the fly and you set the hook. But usually, you can't see your fly. You just see the cruiser take interest and race toward your fly.......when they stop, wait a second or two, and set the hook. More often than not, the trout has taken the scud and the hook set is a good one.

Upon Osthoff's recommendations, I usually tie the scud on a twelve foot leader with a lot of tippet, up to four feet sometimes. The long line enhances the sink rate of the FS Scud.
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Old 08-23-2013, 11:52 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

Wow! We need to go fishing sometime. What great fish. Just great pics and great settings, great fish.

Great post! Thanks for putting it up
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Old 01-25-2015, 04:21 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

I'm planning a trip this summer to the Wind River Range. I read about your trip in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness area. Can you share places you stayed? I'm planning on camping. What parts did you fish? I was thinking about early to mid June. Having never been there, I'm looking for info to assist in planning a trip. I would appreciate any info you can give. Thanks,

Fran Bires
Sandy Lake, PA
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Old 01-25-2015, 05:16 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

Early to mid June you'd better bring all your winter gear and some ice fishing gear. Mid July is the earliest I hit the winds and high up there is usually a fair bit of snow left depending on the year. As far as suggestions where to go, there are some questions to ask first... How much backpacking experience do you have? What kind of terrain are you willing to hike through? On or off trail? How long do you plan on being out? How much distance do you want to do? That should get us a better start on suggestions. Also don't expect anybody to give up much for honey hole lakes, but for the good of the fish folks are often pretty tight lipped about the real good spots. That said the winds are my favorite mountain range and the rewards for hiking there are well worth the challenges hiking in them can present.
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Old 01-26-2015, 01:31 AM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

Rocketbomb, I couldn't have said it better myself. The only time I would ever consider to get deep into the Winds during June would only be during a very light snowpack year followed up by a dry and warm Spring (these years do come about, but only about every 10-15 years on average - so you can't count on it).

That being said, I do know a handful of golden aficianados that actually prefer June even during regular weather years.......because if you can trudge into the lake of choice, quite a few lakes are starting to ice off, especially those with no high ridges on the southern side of the basin. And if golden lakes are ice free, this is the time of year when goldens voraciously feed in the shallows. As the summer progresses, goldens have a tendency to disappear to the depths, because they pocess the rare (trout) ability to feed on plankton. I can't tell you how many times I've proudly arrived to a potential trophy golden lake in mid to late summer just to see the lake devoid of all traces of fish.

Paboy, if you can manage it......I would wait until at least July to plan a trip. The Winds are already a hard enough range to hike deep into (as rocketbomb so accurately pointed out), but doing it in deep snow sounds like misery to me. And I always recommend the Popo Agie to Winds newbies. There are very good NF campgrounds at all trailheads and there is decent golden fishing within striking distance of even beginner backpackers. And if you're planning a fishing trip into the Winds, Osthoff's book Fly Fishing the Rocky Mountain Backcountry is required reading.

As for the Popo AGie, I've started a couple 2-3 threads on the Popo Agie on these forums - just search my threads.
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Old 01-26-2015, 08:58 AM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

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Originally Posted by countr21 View Post

And if you're planning a fishing trip into the Winds, Osthoff's book Fly Fishing the Rocky Mountain Backcountry is required reading.
Can't echo the above recommendation enough... especially if this is your first time backpacking the Rocky Mountain west. It is a completely different beast than the eastern US.

Proper preparation is required.
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Old 01-29-2015, 06:19 PM
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Default Re: Nice Cutts and Goldens in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness (Winds)

the one time I went into the Winds was June, early 90s.. talked to the WY G&F in Pinedale, they said usually there would be a couple feet of snow at the trailhead then, and I was just lucky.
They sent me to a lake full of grayling, and some 18" brookies, astonishing. Never found the goldens on that trip but some of the biggest cutts I ever saw.
The G&F guys aren't going to give up secret spots, but in my experience if you go and talk to them in person, usually they will be helpful and point you to at least a couple reasonable places to try/start.
Not sure why I've never managed to get back.. bit sad really.. ;-(
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