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Old 09-16-2013, 08:20 AM
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Default Need Some info!

Hey guys, Looking for some advice/info for an upcoming trip. My buddies and I are taking a trip at he end of the month, and we are still trying to decide where to go. We are contemplating floating the green below flaming gorge or the Big horn Bleow thermopolis. My questions are how are the weeds bleow those dams that time of year? are they out of control like they are at grey reef? Does anyone know if the recent rains are affecting the flows there? I am assuming normall tailwater fare as fara as flies go? We are not the most experienced boatmen yet, how serious are the rapids there?
Thanks in advance,
Steve
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Old 09-16-2013, 07:40 PM
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Default Re: Need Some info!

Green is easy at low flows like we have now. Weeds, but not too many to make fishing frustrating. Plenty of clean riffles. Weeds on edges and in scum holes. All the water is public. You can float, anchor, wade, do whatever you want. Rapids are there, but run every day in all sorts of craft, including first-timers.

At Thermop., you can float, and anchor in certain square-inch sections. Most of it is "don't even think of touching the earth beneath you." There is a public section directly below the dam at Boysen, but that's a short float with a tricky takeout up a hill side (cliff). Best waded. There's weeds. There's spots with less weeds. Fish dries!

Both are good fishing. More fish on the Green. Better average quality, most of the time, at Thermop. Green is unaffected by rain. So is Thermop. for the most part.
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Old 09-16-2013, 11:09 PM
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Default Re: Need Some info!

Get ahold of McNerney. He fishes that area quite a bit. I floated the Bighorn below Thermopolis with him earlier this spring. We put in at the Wedding of the Waters and Took out at some bridge. Lots of nice size fish. I don't think weeds will be that big of problem.

-Chase
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:01 AM
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Default Re: Need Some info!

Steve: Lightline pretty well summed up the rivers. Here is my take, the Green below Flaming Gorge is probably my favorite water except for the tuber issue in the summer, but that should be thinning out pretty fast with the cooler wx coming. For sheer numbers of fish and total overall beauty, Flaming Gorge is hard to beat, then throw in all the public access makes it an almost ideal location. The weeds in all three tailwaters will get really bad in August but that should also be thinning out as the cooler temps hit. I have floated the Grey Reef (once) in August and the river was so clogged with weeds we pretty much gave up trying to fish, but then last year ScobySteve and I floated there in late Sept and had a great time throwing streamers. There were some weed issues, but it wasn't to where we couldn't fish.

Edit: Steve, I assumed you have access to a drift boat when I made the comments above. For wade fishermen, the Green below Flaming Gorge beats the North Platte hands down as all of that land is BLM below Flaming Gorge. The Bighorn below Thermopolis doesn't have much access except right at the boat ramps. The North Platte from Alcova to Casper has 6-7 public access points so it is a little better, but the scenery sucks.
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Last edited by mcnerney; 09-17-2013 at 07:49 AM.
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Old 09-17-2013, 08:17 AM
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Default Re: Need Some info!

Thank you for the replies guys! Mcnerney, I do have access to a drift boat. We are probably leaning towards grey reef due to time contraints and other members of our drifting party. We have floated the reef a few times now. What streamer patterns do you suggest? I seem to be becoming a streamer junkie as of late, and it has dominated my tying time lol. Also, any suggestions for the govt. bridge section of the river? We floated from the dam all the way down to the take out and did not do as well in that section.
Thanks,
Steve
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Old 09-17-2013, 09:13 AM
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Default Re: Need Some info!

Steve: The Reef can be great streamer fishing this time of year, especially on overcast days. I guess my favorite patterns are pine squirrel leeches, bite me buggers and vanilla buggers. I was reading an article yesterday on the Orvis Fly Fishing blog where the author was touting streamers with orange in them when targeting big browns. I never tried that, but it might be worthwhile to experiment a little. His favorites were an orange clouser minnow, McGinnis Extra Stout and Minny Monny Leech. Denny Rickards the stillwater guru also likes burnt orange in his patterns. I've never done very well on that stretch from Lusby to the Gov't Bridge, most of it looks like frog water to me, but maybe I just don't know how to fish it effectively.
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