Posted on February 7, 2012
The past several days have been very calm with seasonable temps. These conditions almost always produce a huge midge hatch and Grey Reef’s trout can’t resist a midge creeping around on the river’s surface. Dry fly fishing on Grey Reef can be prolific in the winter…even if the wind is blowing. Finding protected areas where the bugs congregate will have the trout looking up or eating very close to the surface.
Dry/dropper rigs, emerger rigs or a single dry fly will get them like Trent did yesterday. Trent walked the short trail to the Grey Reef where he and his 4wt landed a number of rainbows and one brown on a dry fly. When your office window overlooks the entire upper Grey Reef section of the North Platte River it is hard to stay in. Justification is research and development right?
Gorgeous day! Calm and seasonable. Midges loving the conditions and Grey Reef’s critters are loving the midges. You should make some time to experience Grey Reef in the winter. Our area isn’t only about fishing (although what else do you need?). We also have great skiing, snowmobile trails, museums and cultural events. This weekend Casper hosts a sled dog race and you can get a lift ticket and rentals at our alpine ski area for $35 on Saturday and Sunday. Bring the family!
Lower elevations picked up 4-5″ overnight. Our mountain reported 14″ at 8000ft. No report on Miracle Mile yet BUT the roads were still bad before this last snow. Mother Nature will start moving this snow as soon as the pressure rises. It would be prudent to avoid trying to get to Miracle Mile for the next couple days. Will update conditions asap.
Boys had great fishing yesterday again on Grey Reef. Lazy Midges, Medallion Midges, PAL etc all very effective on the nymph rig and a Goldie Locks is all you need on the streamer rig.
I picked up Trent yesterday at 7am. Met Stu in Rawlins at 8:30 and breezed into Park City, UT by early afternoon. The High Country Fly Fishers (Park City TU Chapter)welcomed us for dinner and we presented a Grey Reef/Miracle Mile Program after that. Great turnout! And a dedicated group of anglers. Their commitment was infectious. Due to commitments and an approaching storm we hit the road a bit after 9pm. Snow and ice were the surface conditions for the first hour and a half but dropped Stu back in Rawlins at 1:30 Am, Trent to the lodge at 3am and I hit the pillow about 4am.
Lots of early interest this year and folks are booking very early as well. If you are considering a lodge trip this year I would urge you to call soon. While there are still some excellent spots available they are limited. One room spots are easier to come by but multiple room reservations are becoming a little more tricky.
Very nice conditions today. Calm and expecting snow by late afternoon…could be as much a 4-5″ by tomorrow. Early season day trips are a great way to save a little money and have amazing fishing. Do not expect fewer fish or slower activity due to the time of year. This is a very active fishery and you can experience the best fishing of your life even in our “off season”. Most experienced guides and most private access make it a great value. But, don’t expect us to make you commit to a less than optimal day just because you made the reservation.
Grey Reef is fishing very well and our guides have been enjoying the solitude…like they do every year. This is one thing that sets our guides apart. They fish all year and at any opportunity. After thousands of days on the water they are still in love with Grey Reef and are able to appreciate every day.
This AM is calm. This time of year can yield excellent dry fly fishing WHEN conditions cooperate. Grey Reef’s prolific midge hatches lure a lot of fish to the surface. This is especially true at Fremont. Light weight emerger rigs are key during the peak of the hatch. Bugs a few inches under the surface will get the attention of the most aggressive feeders. Stick an emerger in the film or a dry on top and prepare to have a good time. You won’t be disappointed.
If you are in need of some fishing give us a call. We have guides available and they can show you all the things you normally don’t get to experience in this region. It isn’t all about dragging worms around on a dredging rig. Come and get it!
Big winds again last night but starting out pretty good this AM. Fishing is typical ho-hum good. Very little pressure and there have been some very aggressive eats the past couple days.
Streamers getting throttled during the big midge hatches. And a foam post RS2 is as effective as ever during these hatches. Fish tucked up into the ledges and eating suspended emergers during the peak of the hatch. Then they will drift back to the tailouts and soft edges to casually snack throughout the day.
We are so lucky to be where we are. The only inhabitants of one of the best tail water fisheries. Grey Reef is our playground. Fremont and the Mile require a huge investment in time…15 minutes to Fremont and 35 to the Mile. We are spoiled!
The BuRec will be pushing water over the spillway at Alcova starting Tuesday. Flows will remain at 500cfs. The diversion is so they can perform maintenance on the hydro unit. This will open up some good angling opportunities.
Yesterday was nice. Then the Chinook winds started late and it is ripping today. On the bright side it will be warm. Again, be very cautious on the road to Miracle Mile. Several inches of snow yesterday and wind today will only make that situation more difficult.
Instead stop at Grey Reef as the fishing has been very good. There are a couple good spots to hunker down and be able to fish with relative ease. Slow swinging The Reef Fly Shop’s Goldie or nymphing scuds, midges and worms/leeches. Ice still present on many parts of the river blow Lusby. And it was pretty slushy below Government Bridge yesterday.
This is a Trent Tatum shot of he and Brad (NPL guide and The Reef Fly Shop “Director of Relations”) fishing yesterday at Grey Reef.
We had a beautiful day today…calm and a new blanket of snow. Wyoming’s snow pack has recovered to 92% of average. It was at 75% just a week ago. Jackson and the southeast mountains have been getting snow daily. The road to Miracle Mile is drifted and in very poor condition. Even residents of the Dome Rock area staying in town due to roads so bad it wasn’t worth the risk to get home. Please call before heading out to the Mile.
We have had busy phones the past couple weeks. The lodge has some availability in April and October but the rest of the months are getting slim. Day trips are booking earlier than we have ever experienced as well. Big thanks to all who have supported us! Couldn’t do it without you. We will make your experience second to none. Accept no compromises.
We still have some great options for an April lodge trip. and availability for early May. This is arguably the most productive fishing of the season.
Fishing is strong on both a nymph rig and a slowly maneuvered streamer. Trick is to fish between windy or snowy days.
The past 10 days we have had very strong winds along the entire eastern slope. Colorado and Montana are getting it just as bad or worse than we are. We have had a couple calm days and significant snows in between gusts. Yesterday we were greeted to 4″ of new snow on the ground in Alcova. That translated to 12″ on our mountain and nearly 2′ in Southern Wyoming. That is great news for the North Platte River drainage.
Trent, Katherine and JJ all attended the Tom Harpstraith Memorial Youth Hunt in Torrington,WY Yesterday. Tom was a great guy and one of JJ best friends and mentors. He left us suddenly last year. His legacy will be remembered in a great event to get young folks into the field and experience bird hunting.