This week I welcome Mike Branson from the great state of Idaho. Mike owns and operates Wind River Outfitters in the Nez Perce National Forest area of Central Idaho.
If you are a fly fisher and like to hike, backpack, or ride a horse then Idaho offers you some of the best and most picturesque high mountain lake and stream fishing in the country.
Mike and his wife Jaylene offer fly fishing trips that many of you probably did not know existed. Wind River Outfitters offer fly fishing trips to the high mountain lakes of Idaho.
The cool thing is that there is no way in except by foot or horseback. WRO will take you to places that are so unspoiled and pure that you can drink water right out of the streams.
In the interview Mike tells us what it is like to ride a horse up into the mountains, fly fish all day, eat Western home cooking style Dutch oven meals, sit around the campfire and tell lies stories about the fish you caught that day, go to sleep in a tent… and get up the next day and do it all over again.
The gear you need is not complicated because the trout are not pressured. He says you can use just about any fly to catch them.
Mike says the cutthroats are so fat and chubby that they fight for a short time and then just rollover and let you net them.
Here are some of the flies that Mike finds work the best.
- Royal Coachman,
- Red, Yellow, and Green Belly Humpy
- Elk hair Caddis
- Black Ant
- Light Cahill
- The Irresistible (call Mike about this one)
- Most in the 12 to 16 size range.
- Except for the Grasshopper. They are about a size 12.
- Most of the small Emergers and Wooly Buggers in black and some green work well for under the surface nymph fishing.
I was shocked to learn how short the fishing season is. Less than three months of fishing because everything is frozen solid the rest of the year.
I had no idea the amount of work Mike and Jaylene have to do to get you fly fishing up in the mountains. Growing the hay, breeding his own horses, setting out the salt blocks, setting up an electrical fence, controlling the deer and elk that wander the outskirts of the campsite, and so much more.
Are you getting an idea of the experience that awaits you?
Don’t think that this is an all-male adventure. Mike tells us that more often than not families make up the most of the camps. Mike says it give friends and families time to just focus on each other.
Young and old and everyone in between can enjoy the great experience Wind River Outfitters offers.
So sit back and listen in as I ask Mike about fly fishing the high-country lakes and streams of Idaho.
Enjoy the interview.
Call Mike at 800-854-6697 OR 208-278-3706
Wind River Outfitters Website: WindriverOutfitters.com
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