North Platte River
Wyoming’s North Platte River is more than a trout stream.
The North Platte River, a wild freestone river, is a destination worthy of any serious fly fisher. The Platte offers large numbers of trout. With 4,000 trout per mile and up to 7000 in some places, the Platte is a world class Trout stream.
Bordered by the Snowy Range and Sierra Madre Mountains, The Platte offers blue ribbon fishing in beautiful mountain scenery. The Platte offers anglers lots of opportunities to catch lunker trout. Trout in the 20 inch range are common and enough 30 inch fish are present that anglers have a genuine shot at the fish of a lifetime.
The Upper North Platte River
The Platte begins in Colorado and runs North across the Wyoming state line. It then flows through two canyons, the Six Mile Gap and the North Gate. By mid to late summer the wade fishing in the canyon stretch, which is about 20 miles, becomes very good. This section offers a good variety of water to fish. You’ll find pocket water, medium runs, deep pools and shallow riffles. The trout will average around 14 inches with some stretching to 20 inches.
The freestone section of the North Platte River runs mostly through Medicen Bow National Forest. Here you’ll find unlimited access to the river for wade fishing.
The Encampment joins the Platte near Treasure Island. This is where the Platte leaves the canyons and flows into the foothills and ranch land. From there to Seminoe Reservoir the river cuts through private land and is for the most part restricted to float fishing. The fish will average 15 to 18 inches in this section with some going well over 20 inches.
The Miracle Mile
The seven mile stretch of river between Seminoe Reservoir and Pathfinder Reservoir is known as the miracle mile. This stretch of water offers rainbows, browns and some cutthroats. The miracle mile has produced browns and rainbows up to 20 pounds, and a five pounder is not uncommon. The main food source on this part of the river is the scud, which is why the trout get so big.
This section is a short tail water and the flows can be unpredictable. During the peak season this section of the platte can get quite crowded. One of the best times to fish the miracle mile is winter. When the cold weather has most anglers staying close to the fire, you can fish for the big ones without much competition. The miracle mile is open all year.
The Gray Reef Section
The North Platte River below Pathfinder, Alcova and Gray Reef Reservoirs is known as the Gray Reef section. This section although similar in numbers and quality of fish to the miracle mile, doesn’t get all the press. This stretch of river is best fished from a raft or boat and you’ll find plenty of boat access.
Even though the gray reef section is a tail water, the flows remain fairly constant all year. The majority of trout in this part of the river will be rainbows. If you drift a scud or strip a streamer through the deep runs you’ll find a big brown now and then.
The North Platte River is one of Wyoming’s best known trout streams. It’s not hard to understand why. The Platte flows through beautiful scenic country, offers easy access and produces lots of trophy trout. The Platte is more than a Wyoming fly fishing blue ribbon trout stream. The North Platte is a destination where every serious fly fisher should cast a line.