August 2, 2012

Fishing In Wyoming: The Recap

So let's talk about Wyoming.  Yeah, I went there for my first day of fishing on my recent journey West.  Why?  Because The River Damsel wanted to take me there.  I couldn't have gone to Salt Lake City (which I realize is not in Wyoming) without fishing with Emily -- I don't think she would have permitted such a crime.  

Would I ever had stepped foot in Wyoming otherwise?  Probably not, but I did, and I'm glad I did.

If you've already read Emily's post (conveniently located HERE), you already got the general rundown on the trip.  RD writes a good story over there on her blog, even though she thinks I never read it.  That said, here's what really happened, she left a few things out... 

The morning started at 5:30 AM.  Let me tell you, I despise waking up early to go fishing.  (I don't care when you get up, anything before 7:00 AM is early in my book, even with a 2 hour time difference).  Quite honestly, on most occasions I boycott a crack o'dawn rise, however Emily wanted to get an early start on our 2 and a half hour drive.  Thus, I sucked it up and got up and stumbled down the the parking lot to hop in the Damselmobile and go, nice and prompt-like.  That said, I refused to shower or shave out of principle.  Screw that.  I might have brushed my teeth, I don't remember...

We drove...and drove...and ate donuts...and drove...and you know what...actually you probably already know this...but get a little bit out of Salt Lake City, and there's like nothing.  Just mountains and valleys that all look rocky, dry, and generally devoid of life, spare the random ranch house here or there.  Luckily, Emily likes to talk, and I don't mind listening, so the time in the car went relatively quickly.  Oh, and yes fellow fishing bloggers, we were largely talking about you.  So there.

When we finally reached Wyoming, we cruised main street Kemmerer like a bunch of lost tourists gangstas, rollin' into the Kum & Go (yeah, that's really the name) to pick up our fishing licenses.  In case you didn't know, the Kemmerer Oyster Ridge Music Festival was that weekend, and all 47 residents of town came out to celebrate.  Kemmerer is also home to the original J.C. Penney store, you know, just in case you weren't aware of that bit of Americana.  Could I make that up?

Oh...the fishing...we did that too.

So we hit the Ham's Fork River in a couple different spots.  All on random unmarked pull-offs along a road in the middle of nowhere while also braving shotgun blasts from private land owners.  Was it beautiful?  Were there fish?  Damn straight.

We pretty much spent the day working our way downstream (yeah, I said downstream).  I primarily fished a bugger and then later some dries (graciously suggested by the folks at Western Rivers Flyfisher), while RD stuck to an assortment of proven nymphs.  She's a filthy, dirty nympher...there ain't no changing that.  Even when she had a momentary lapse in judgment and fished a dry, she still had a nymph dropper.  But I shouldn't poke fun, she out-fished me probably by a handful on the day.  I don't know, I don't count.  I was impressed.  She ain't know...for a girl.

I'd bore you with more river and fish pictures, but I already posted an album on Facebook a few days ago.  Most of you have already seen (& "liked") it, and to those that didn't, what the hell is wrong with you?

Now let's talk about "the incident" on the way home.  It wasn't all Burt Reynolds & Sally Field if you know what I mean.  (As the passenger in the car, does that make me Sally Field?)

Yeah, The River Damsel got nabbed for a speeding ticket.  She didn't get into the real details on her blog, so let me set the scene.  We're stuck behind some pickup truck towing a 4-wheeler and something else random like a toilet, going like 40 MPH on a 65 MPH road.  Road raging because she wanted to scamper back to Utah to hit the Weber River on the way home, Emily punched the gas to pass...which we did...and we were in the clear cruising along at a nice clip.  

With potty trailer in the rear view, we settled in for the rest of the drive back while maintaining speed.  Emily was enjoying a milkshake and I was fumbling with cords to recharge a dead iPod in search of bad '80s rock.  Neither of us were probably paying all that close attention to the road ahead when a cop car materialized out of nowhere.  Like really nowhere.  

He tagged us for doing 75 in a 65 and a $70 ticket.  C'mon Cletus, 10 MPH, really?  RD tried to pout her way out of it, (I mean since things like the internet haven't reached Wyoming yet, he wouldn't have recognized the two celebrities sitting in front of him) but I'm sure in the eyes of the trooper she was guilty at "Utah" on her license plate.  If only I had a T! sticker on me for bribery.  Damn it to hell.

They don't use flashing lights to stop you in Wyoming

That excitement behind us, and legal 75 MPH speed limits ahead, we sped off to close the day off at the Weber.  To be honest, after Wyoming, fishing the Weber was a little anti-climactic.  Following a quick wade through sheep on the way to the stream, Emily quickly tagged a fish, I didn't, and we packed up shop after no more than 20 minutes.  

(C'mon RD, up the megapixels on that cellphone camera)

I think we were both tired out, but she really just wanted to show me one of her favorite fishing spots.  It was nice of her, and a very cool little spot, despite the case of whirling disease I now surely have acquired from the quick jaunt in Utah water.

So to close, a lot of the above post had my usual snarky tone, but to be 100% truthful, my Wyoming fishing experience was pretty much unforgettable.  It makes being back in the office sitting at a desk staring at a computer intolerable.  

A big thanks go out to The River Damsel for showing me around both Wyoming & Utah.  They just don't make country like that in my neck of the woods.  The fish were feisty, the scenery was spectacular, the weather was cooperative (despite a morning sprinkle), the conversation was great, & the company was even better.  You simply can't ask for much more...well...a couple more hours of sleep would have been nice...


  1. Way to go T! Nice write up and glad you enjoyed your trip West.

    1. That's Howard. I still don't understand "fry sauce" but everything else out West is good by me.

  2. Awesome post! Glad you had a good time. I kick myself for not being into fly fishing when I lived in Utah....what I would give to fish out there now.

  3. I remember a saying: "nine you're fine, ten you're mine."

    Awful nice of you to say "He tagged us for doing 75 in a 65."

    1. Yeah, I even offered to pay for the ticket. Oh well...

    2. My new favorite number... 9. Thanks, Clif.

  4. And here's thinking I wanted to join the two of you that day! OK, yeah I WISH I could have!
    Looking forward to the write up about the rest of the trip!

    1. Next time that will be a certainty. Oh, and look for your name in an upcoming post.

    2. Uh oh!
      I look forward to it!
      and look for a photograph of you in my Tenkara Summit write up too!

  5. This is the most awesome post I've ever read. This is not spam. :) You'll figure it out.

  6. There's a Kum & Go near one of my favorite trout streams in Arkansas too. I've thought buying the official Kum & Go camo baseball cap, but for whatever reason Kelly doesn't seem to approve so I still haven't made the purchase. I have too many hats already anyway.
    Looks like you had a great trip.

  7. I was going to comment about this and that, but there was so much I would have commented about that I'll just say I thought the post was great.


  8. So there. I'm tired all over again just reliving this adventure! In retrospect, we could have fished local waters, but what kind of fun report would we have? None. Yep, Wyoming...where cattle, minks, otters, and a few State Troopers roam freely... = )

  9. Great post. Sure seems like excitement tends to follow Ms. R.D. around. Looks like it was a beautiful trip. Well, except for maybe the run in with the law.

  10. Getting up before the sun doesn't thrill me either, but I always remember why it's worth it when I get on the water. Sounds like you youngin's had a grand old time. You need to come out to Minnesota and catch some *real* fish.

  11. Enjoyed the story. You're sure livin' the dream- fishing all over the U.S. and all, though it isn't much of a vacation getting up at 5:30 AM. Here's to more tight lines.

  12. Sounds like a great trip! Let me know when you're in Laramie, we can hit up Six Mile Gap on the Upper North Platte and maybe change your mind about Wyoming!