I know this blog is kinda turning into my own fishing journal. I promise that we have something other than fishing trips coming up. BUT...This is my blog and I do what I want!
A quick word before we go any further. What exactly is a "Greenie"? Simply put, it is a person from Colorado. It is the green license plate. Get it? Greenie. Deep right? Some people in Wyoming use the word in a derogatory manner, but is is mostly just neighborly and old rival ribbing. I was born and raised in southern Wyoming and now I live in northern Colorado. Both states are home for me. As long as we keep it fun and in a respectful place I don't think it is a bad thing at all. Greenies like me and my friends pay our fair share for recreation in Wyoming. I get it. A lot of folks from Colorado get outside in Wyoming, but it is good for all of us if we all respect the resource. Wyomingites make money Coloradoans get less crowded natural places and hopefully both clean up after themselves and each other. Respect gets respect....That is all I really have to say about that.
The Grey Reef is a stretch of river outside of Casper, Wyoming near the small town of Alcova. It is an extremely productive fishery full of big healthy fish. It is still streaky like any fishery and sometimes it just doesn't fish well, but more often than not, if you work hard at fishing here you will catch nice fish. There are places to wade the river, but the fishery really shines when you are in a drift boat. As luck would have it, I was invited to to get out with some friends for the maiden voyage of my friend Jason's brand new Boulder Boat Works drift boat. They are quite possibly the finest drift boats on the market and his boat is absolutely beautiful. Here it is in front of my house before we got it dirty for the first time.
Here she is at the put in before her first trip down the North Platte River. Jason named her Bessie for reasons that I maybe can't go into on a family friendly blog. She is real pretty though.
First breakfast burrito and first fish in the new boat. Yeah, that's right, I caught the first fish in Bessie. I'm not bragging or anything, but I think you should know...Ha...Actually it happened right out of the gate on the float and, if you fish you know, that sometimes catching a fish right away is bad mojo for the rest of the day. It wasn't, but there was a short time when the fishing was slow where I wondered if I cursed us all.
Me with the first fish while Jason gets his first few oar strokes in on his brand new boat. Jason is a skilled boatman and he taught me a lot about rowing on this trip.....Mostly not to freak out. Dude is a monster on the oars and he definitely helped me out a ton. Thanks for your experience amigo!
This is my other friend Jason. (Both my friends on this trip are named Jason...I like to call it fishing with the Jasons.) Some people call him PeeWee. He is a fishy dude, and a really great guy. PeeWee is one of the best anglers I know. He didn't get there by talking and thinking about fishing. He was out there. Fishing. As much as possible. Every day. Getting it done. It is his passion and he is a man obsessed. He has earned what he knows and he has paid his dues to the fishing gods. He runs a Facebook group called Poudre Pee. Ask to join the group and I bet someone will grant you access.
So I got on the oars and the Jasons starting hooking up with fish. It is pretty cool to put other people on fish.
The Jasons in the boat and wading at one of the few public lunch spots.
We all got into some fish. It wasn't on fire, but it was pretty good and we definitely had a good time.
See that giant mess of line and flies down there? That is what happens when you cross lines while someone has a fish on. That was me. That was my fault. I didn't get my rig out of the way while Jason was fighting his fish, and I made a mess. Sorry about that Jason....Glad it worked out.
All and all it was a great trip for me. I learned a lot from both of these guys. They are both super knowledgable and they are both not afraid to help folks out. Part of fishing is figuring out things for yourself, but there is a big part of it that comes from what you can glean from other people. Like that old saying "great artists steal", most all of my fishing is just things I have taken from the people I have fished with. You can pick up new techniques, new skills, and new perspective if you are observant of people. Thanks fellas! It was a great trip and I hope we get to do it again!
Some recommendations if you ever head to the Grey Reef.
Looking for a Fly Shop, a nice place to crash, or park your camper? Hit up Trent at The Reef Fly Shop.
Looking for a cheap place to crash? Try the Riverview Inn. While there you have to pay a visit to the Sunset Bar and Grill. This one time, my father in-law and I happened to be at the Sunset for this thing called Skull Feast (Feast not Fest!) and THIS (TURN YOUR SPEAKERS DOWN) happened....Serious bonding moment with my wife's dad for sure, but that is another story for another time.
Need a shuttle, beer, or a breakfast burrito? Try Sloane's.
Thanks for reading! Get outside wherever you are, whatever the conditions. There is no bad weather, just bad gear.