By Jeff McDonald
It was not until well into July when winter finally loosened its grip on the high country of Wyoming’s Snowy Range, located about 30 miles west of Laramie. The snow finally receded and reveled familiar meandering streams teaming with hungry brook trout.
The window for fly fishing for brook trout above 10,000 feet is small; winter will again begin to set in as early as mid-September. This gives the resident brook trout a short time to eat anything and everything that they can … and this makes for exciting fly fishing.
My tool of choice for these small high alpine streams is a 7-foot, 6-inch, 3-weight rod, 6X tippet, and big bushy dry flies that present a meal opportunity that is too good to pass up.
The cold mountain water is gin-clear, making it easy to sight trout. This also means the trout can see me, so a certain level of stealth is required to approach each deep pool that can hold dozens of trout. Approaching a pool from the downstream side and making short to moderate cast that places the fly at the head of the pool is sure to produce a strike.
While these fish are generally small, ranging from 6 to 12 inches, they hit the fly deliberately and with purpose. Hooking these trout with light tackle is some of the most fun I have ever had trout fishing.