N. Platte & Big Horn River Winter Fishing Report Jan. 2022

Gray Reef: Fishing remains very solid below the damn. The ice jams are moving around a bit so check with us before you float to make sure there isn’t a big jam up before Lusby. We are all at the mercy of Wyoming’s weather so it’s always good to check the 10 day extended forecast as the weather can go from 30 degrees to negative 10 over-night. That being said the fishing is fantastic and the fish are happily gobbling midges. In addition, rock worms, scuds, and leaches have been the ticket. This is a great time of year to find the solitude that everybody looks for while fishing the North Platte. The lack of pressure that the reef sees this time of year brings a high number of eats and the chance of a true trophy trout. Wade fishing is great right now however it is much more comfortable and productive to fish out of a drift boat with the cold water. During the Winter on the North Platte our trout are stoked, the only question is are you?

Miracle Mile: With the pressure down, the big rainbows are actively feeding on midges. Most of the lake run browns have slipped back into the lake, but there are still some resident browns hanging out. The REEL story is the big rainbows. Though it may not be every cast when you do hang one, hang on! The notorious mile road has been in great shape for this time of year, it was recently graded. As far as bugs go, we recommend mayhem midges in black & purple, pine squirrel leaches in natural & brown, rock worms in red & purple, and hot head sow bugs in pink & tan. Winter fishing at the mile has always been one of our favorites so bundle up and let’s go bust em’ up!

Big Horn: On this awesome stretch of river something magical happens in the winter. The streamer bite turns on! The most productive bugs are articulated white or olive, but the key is covering as much water as you can. Trout spey is definitely in play. Cast straight across don’t mend and let it haul ass. Then take two steps down and do it again. As far as nymphing, purple back scuds have been crushing it. Hot head sow bugs in colors tan and pink, and the olive mayhem is getting grabbed for a midge or smaller BWO. On the nicer days the fish have been sticking their heads up giving you opportunities for winter dry fly fishing. Our favorite rig is the extended body blue wing olive trailed by a mayhem midge. So get off your computer looking at fish porn and come fish the big horn!