July 30, 2018

Hiking into the Canyon - July 26, 2018

I love going off trail and hiking cross country to access river reaches that are not commonly fished. The older I get, the less stamina I have to do the really hard stuff, but I still like to do what I can. On July 26th I did just that -- hiked down into a canton and fished the upper reaches of a stream that is well known to me. However, I had never fished the upper reach due to its reduced accessibility.

After getting my compass bearing, and marking my home location on Gaia GPS (where I parked the pickup), I headed off cross country. I worked my way through aspen and mountain maple, down through the conifer belts, and finally to the stream. The water was crystal clear and the flow was perfect.

Looking downstream from where I entered the stream. 

Looking upstream. 

I carried two rods with me that day. That's unusual for me, as I generally only carry one rod with me on my outings. But this trip I decided on two rods, each with completely different characteristics. For the first half of the outing I fished the Shimano Maystone 36 NW, and for the last half the TenkaraBum 36. I used the same 360 cm #2.5 line with each rod.

As I worked my way upstream, through pockets and pools, up cascades and small waterfalls, I took many trout. They were in the usual locations and took my sakasa kebari and futsū kebari equally well. They all seemed to prefer a neutral colored fly, rather than a dark fly.

I took a few brook trout, many rainbows, and a small number of cutthroats.  All of the fish were healthy and strong and used the current to give a good fight.

Coming out of the canyon at the top. 

At the top of the canyon I was able to climb out with ease, due to the fact that the canyon rim gets closer to the stream than from where I entered downstream. I had fished from 1130-1430 hours, a little longer than I usually do, and had not only explored a new river reach, but had taken some beautiful fish. I was very pleased and went home happy.


  1. Beautiful river, beautiful fish.

    In your opinion does the presence of the Brookies harm the Cutthroat population?

    Glad to see you posting more often again. I enjoy them.

    1. Yes, I believe introduced, invasive brook trout harm cutthroat trout populations. It's complicated though, as cited in this scientific article:

      Douglas P. Peterson, Fausch, K., & White, G. (2004). Population Ecology of an Invasion: Effects of Brook Trout on Native Cutthroat Trout. Ecological Applications, 14(3), 754-772. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/4493578

  2. All beautiful, and the transplanted brookie simply awesome...jealous in CT.

    1. Yes, I have to admit, they are a very pretty fish!

  3. Gorgeous brookie, even though I guess you're supposed to bonk it on the head and kill 'em out West. Being an east coaster, still have a soft spot for them, even if out of place.

  4. Wow! Such a beautiful river which ,to me, looks the classic river for tenkara. What a lovely place to be. I could quite happily spend hours there just watching the flowing water. Thank you for sharing.