Today was a day to remember on the Miracle Mile and a great way to wrap a fun two weeks on the North Platte. I can’t think of many days in August where we have boated as many 24″ fish as we did today. A special congrats to Mike Minch of Parker and his good fishing buddy Roy for making today what we will always call the “Day of Pigs.” Just BEAUTIFUL!!! (inside joke)
We launched the raft directly below the dam and Mike instantly became a streamer junky when he hit a solid 24″ Cutthroat on an black Sex Dungeon (about a 5 inch long fly). The pace never slowed and be the time we got to the bridge we had already boated 20-30-40-50 fish….who knows! More than we could care to count. Things slowed a bit below the bridge and I looked over at the river left bank below the boat ramp and reminisced on the days this spring when flows were 10,000 CFS and I could count on all the big boys and girls to be lined up tight against the bank. Now that flows are down to 1,500 CFS it can be a bit trickier to find fish in the wider and now slower water. I dropped anchor and examined the water for a little. I felt that the fish couldn’t have gone far since their was some deep water with good current running over it. (I think that’s key to finding fish in big water). So I deepened up, and found the fasted channel of moving water near the banks we hit big fish on all spring and walla…there they were! Before we knew it, Roy got bent on a 24″ male brown on a black goat leach. What a specimen this fish was! 10 minutes later he tied into the HOTTEST fish I have ever seen. A 24″ rainbow that pulled and refused to give up. As icing on the cake Mike hit a rainbow in the same size range just before the boat ramp at Chalk Bluffs that went in the 24″ range.
It’s one thing to hit fish like this when the are lake run but these fish were resident fish that are now calling the Mile home. This is a very encouraging thing to see. For those who have not had the chance to visit the Miracle Mile, words can not explain this place. The complete rural setting really does make it feel like you’re fishing in another country. It’s the type of place that after leave you thinking only about the next time you can be on the Mile. There’s not much else I can say other than the place is truly special.
Rod: 6-8 Wt
Flies: big ugly streamers, #4-10 Rubberlegs, pink SJ’s, #8-12 Prince Nymphs, pine squirrel leaches, goat leaches
End of Trip Grey Reef Report
The Reef was not what we were hoping for going into this trip. The fish were where they were supposed to be (on the bank) and the water temps were right. All the ingredients for a good August of hopper fishing. We were just missing one key ingredient…the hoppers. We definitely hit some fish on hoppers, but the naturals just haven’t grown up to size 4 like they were last year. They are getting close though and my guess is that in the next three weeks its going to happen. The morning trico hatch has been great on the upper river, and the evening caddis remain strong. The afterbay is fishing lights out all day, and the reef is best fished early. The leach bite is on, and pat’s rubberlegs is also becoming a favorite on the reef. This is when you say, “There aren’t big stones on the reef!!!???” You are correct, but I feel the are eating rubberlegs as a crayfish and/or because this fly just irritates the hell out of them! Red rock worms as always are getting the job done.