Copyright 2013 James Marsh
Fly Fishing Guide to the Encampment River Wyoming
The Encampment River gets little attention in the fly fishing books and magazines and not
very much on the Internet. That is because of the nearby Platte River. It gets most of the
attention and while many locals would just as soon keep it that way, those of you who enjoy
fishing new places may prefer to know the facts about this fine stream. As mentioned in the
introduction page, the problem with the lower section of the river in the plains is access. That
is where the better hatches occur and that is where the larger trout are. Trout from sixteen to
twenty inches are not uncommon in this section. The trout in the canyon section of the river
do not average that large.
There is one public access in the lower section that is only a mile long at Baggott Rocks but
that is it. If it were not for the crowds during the prime hatches there would be nothing wrong
with that. Just make sure you carry your own rock during the Green Drake hatch.
The lack of roadside access in the upper section or canyon section is a blessing to some
and not a good thing for those who aren't willing to put out some effort to walk a ways to fish.
The best way to fish the canyon area is to hike in and camp. The area is wild and beautiful
and the trout are plentiful, they are just not as large as the lowland trout.
You can bring your drift boat (raft types are best) down a high bank to launch at the Baggott
and drift downstream but you must stay in the water for about seven miles to the Treasure
Island takeout at the North Platte River before you can take the boat out of the water. In fact
you cannot legally even touch the bottom of the stream with your anchor, much less the
banks. Under Wyoming laws, the land owners own the streambed. If the water levels isn't
high enough, it is impossible to drift this section. The only time they are high enough during
the times you could fish the river as a general rule is from about the end of June to the
second or third week of July. It is also during the best hatch that occurs on the Encampment
River - the Green Drake hatch. If that isn't enough problems for you to consider, be aware
that there is a dam with about a five foot drop in water levels to negotiate near the takeout.
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Encampment River Wyoming