Boysen Reservoir Fly Fishing

Boysen Reservoir – June 27

With no clue how to fly fish for walleye, I went to Four Seasons Anglers in Laramie to get some insight, if possible. They guy there as honest in his lack of knowledge regarding walleyes, but I much appreciate the honesty rather than have a guy send me to the most expensive articulated streamers and say they should work. I spent $30 which is my max when it comes to a fishery I might only fish once, and decided on streamers that looked like they could work in multiple environments.

Fish were cruising the shallows in the evening, trout noisily taking insects off the surface, and carp doing the same but in a slow, casual manner. It’s not the sexiest way to catch a trout, but a rainbow took a small rainbow trout color-schemed jig on a quick strip just as the sun was setting.

I had heard carp are difficult to catch, which is why some in the fly fishing world had become a little obsessed in the way that some curious, some pretentious anglers do. I hadn’t planned on targeting them but since they were there I decided I’d get over my elitist attitude and cast for them.

A few were feeding on top which I had never heard of mostly because I hadn’t paid much attention to the habits of carp. I tried a couple dry flies which they ignored in addition with droppers because it looked like they were casually taking emergers or something on the surface. Nothing worked but I did like the challenge of sight fishing. I could see the charm in this.

I finally came tight with one using a small white/green/pink jig in the back of a sandy bay. It wasn’t a particularly memorable fight, but the fish are strong and heavy.

Wind River – June 27 

After the carp at the reservoir, we headed north for an hour of fly fishing on the Wind River. There is a small stretch of land north of the Boysen Reservoir dam that has incredible bug life and excellent water for big trout. The amount of surface takes compared to the amount of bugs was confusing. However, there are are some tail waters so rich in insect lift that a trout can just hold in a feeding lane and open its mouth. So after a few different assorted caddis, and dry dropper rigs, I went to the old standby of a rubber legs and a zebra midge and caught two beautiful trout.

Louis Lake – June 27
Old news can be good news, or an indication you missed out. While researching lake fishing opportunities near Lander, I came across a news article that is not old really, but if fishing news ages like dogs, it was old.
The 2018 article stated that Louis Lake had trophy caliber Lake Trout but again, that was two years ago when the trout had a chance to gorge themselves on stocked Kokanee according to the piece.
There was a solid caddis hatch but only small fish taking them on the surface. Quite a few dead fish had washed up on the northern shore. Uniform size. Odd to me.
We had a little campfire, roasted some sausages and waited for an evening shallows stalker but never found one.

What I have found with fly fishing in Wyoming, or most new water, is to have a standard battery of flies. Below is an abbreviated version of my box. For instance, I carry a few sizes of zebra midges and also like the olive shade. Same with the birds nest and scud. Midges, dries that can stand alone or work in a dry-dropper setting, a rubber legs, and some hoppers because they are so dang fun. The rubber legs has worked in Colorado, California, Wyoming, Idaho and even at home in Alaska, so I have them in a few sizes. Parachute Adams, standard Adams and a foam or regular caddis make for great droppers.
For lakes I have a few scuds ready and in the case of this last weekend, a jig that makes my fly box look a little suspect.

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