4 days, and a big circuitous loop of North Eastern Utah, I find myself back in Salt Lake City. There is a big trade show to unpack and prepare for, but there are still three days to go before opening bell and one more fishing outing in the Utah Safari left to talk about.
After spending a few hours finalizing my booth setup on the second morning, I decide to head out fishing for the rest of the afternoon. I have to be at the airport later that evening to pickup the boss, but I have around 8 hours to fish. I wanted to try something new, but close. I stopped in at the Western Rivers FlyFisher and got the scoop on what was close and fishing well. The recommendation was to hit up the Big Cottonwood Creek just up the road. Good thing I did as the best tip I took out of that shop was that waders were mandatory on that watershed. On the drive up the canyon, I did not see the sign, but at the parking area on my way out, I witnessed a warden giving a fisherman a stiff warning for not heeding the rules. I hunted for the sign on the way down and sure enough, it was posted. I bet it was in the proclamation as well, but who reads all the fine print.
Continue reading Utah Safari Pt 4 – Big Cottonwood Creek
After a full day of hiking and fishing on Nameless Spring Creek, we drove back into Vernal, and ate a quick meal in a restaurant. yeah…we wimped out on the camp dinner, but we knew that we still had about 2.5 hours to drive to our next camping spot and our excuse was that we did not want to be prepping and eating dinner at 10PM.
We figured that it would be difficult to find a free and available camping spot where we were heading. We got lucky in that as we drove up the dirt road, we found one spot in an area all alone from the crowds, above a section of river that we were going to fish the next morning…perfect! it did rain a bit that night, but nothing that was going to cloud up the water. All was good.
At this point we were back in known territory for me. I have had the pleasure of fishing Current Creek the previous year and I really liked this little creek. Technically, the Current is a tail-water, but it fishes more like a meadow stream with all the beaver dams. The fish are very pretty and range from small to beastly. Your average size fish is about 12″, but you have the potential to catch “a ton” of fish in the course of the days fishing.
Continue reading Utah Safari Pt 3 – Current Creek
After a great day on the Green, we camped one more night in the killer spot we found below Dutch John and departed the next morning for [nameless] spring creek outside of Vernal Utah. It was a short 2.5 hour drive from our camping spot.
I promised not to divulge the name of this spring creek, and I plan to keep that promise (unless you happen to be one of my closest fishing buddies). This place reminded me of Hot Creek. It burbles out of the ground, flows for about 5 miles and confluences with the Green. It was small creek overgrown with brush and tons of that horrible plant, stinging nettle.
We arrived at the parking area, and were elated to find that there was only one other vehicle. We prepped for the day and started the hike. I knew that we were going to hike most of the way down to the Green and then fish our way back upstream. I was anticipating an 8 mile day of hiking and at the end of the day, that is exactly how I felt. On the hike downstream, we passed several really cool petroglyph sites, so of course we had to stop and check them out. About half-way down, we ran into the other carload of folks and they were HIKERS. That meant that we were the only fishermen on the river (so far).
Continue reading Utah Safari Pt 2 – Nameless Spring Creek in Eastern Utah
After a brutal 7 hour drive from Lost Wages to Salt Lake city, I arrived at my friend Jay’s house. He had been busy packing up his truck for our journey, so it was simply a matter of transferring my fishing gear from my vehicle to his truck and it was back on the road. I am fortunate that Jay was willing to drive the 4 hours from Salt Lake to the Green as I was in no condition to drive anymore that day.
We arrived in Dutch John around 1AM and it was time to look for a camping spot. Fortunately for us, we were prepared to camp in Forest Service (that means FREE) land as Jay’s truck had a shell with a padded carpet kit exactly for this purpose. We found a suitable site with little trouble, and turned in for the night.
The next day dawned bright, cloudless, and hot by the early AM. We cleaned up camp, grabbed a quick breakfast, and headed down to Little Hole to start our fishing trip. The Green is a big, beautiful river filled with big, beautiful trout. As we were walking down to the river from the parking area, we saw tons of grasshoppers jumping around. Could this be a sign?
Continue reading Utah Safari Pt 1 – The Green River