Copyright 2017 James Marsh
Fly Fishing The North Platte River's
Miracle Mile, Wyoming
The North Platte River flows ninety miles through
canyons and wide valleys. One of the most popular
areas is called the Miracle Mile, a section of fast water
between two big reservoirs - Pathfinder Reservoir and
Seminole Reservoir. It is imperative that you check the
discharge rates. The discharges from Kortes Dam
depend on the Pathfinder Reservoir water levels but
there are usually some fast water and in some areas,
whitewater flows at times. Fly fishing the North Platte
River's Miracle Mile can be absolutely great at times.
The upper section of the North Platte River flows
through the Miracle Mile Canyon at a much faster rate
than the lower section which flows into Seminole
Reservoir. Naturally, the still water of the lower
reservoir slows the flow down the closer you get to the
lake. This provides a variety of different types of
water. The main feature of this section of the North
Plate Section is its big trout. Trout grow large and
there are plenty of them. Fish of up to twenty pounds
have been caught in the Miracle Mile of the North
Platte River and five pound trout are common.
The Miracle Mile Canyon is also called Kortes
Canyon. It is a beautiful stretch of water. Much of the
fishing is done by floating the river but you can also
wade it. Access is available on the Bureau of Land
Management Property. There are no official boat
ramps on the river and floating the river can be tricky
at times. Most anglers use local guides.
Generally, the length is about seven miles from the
base of Kortes Dam to the slow water of the reservoir
but the length varies depending on the flows. Most of
the fly fishing is done using streamers and nymphs.
Dry fly fishing is possible at certain times but limited.
The releases from the dam fluctuate even during the
day at times.
The river has a diverse and prolific aquatic insect
population for a tailwater. There's plenty of
Blue-winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns and other
mayflies. Golden Stoneflies and Little Yellow
Stoneflies are plentiful. There's also a huge
population of Spotted Sedges and many other
species of caddisflies and of course, huge population
of aways present midges. Scuds are a major source
of food for the trout. Sculpin and baitfish are also
North Platte River Miracle Mile Wyoming
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You can fish the river any day of the year.
Fly fishing the North Platte River Miracle Mile
is very limited during the winter but possible
Spring is good, maybe the best time due to
rainbows that move out of Pathfinder
Reservoir up into the river to spawn.
Recommended Tackle & Gear
5 or 6 weight
Dry fly: 9 to 12 ft., 5 or 6X, Nymphing:
71/2 ft., 3 or 4X, streamers 0-2X
Dry fly: 5 or 6X, Nymphing: 3 or 4X,
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly Superb Five or Ultimate Six
For 5/6 line size
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
Floatants, KISS Strike Indicators
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
North Platte River (Miracle Mile)
Hatches and Trout Flies:
Our information on aquatic insects is
based on our stream samples of larvae
and nymphs, not guess work. We base fly
suggestions on imitating the most plentiful
and most available insects and other
foods at the particular time you are fishing.
Unlike the generic fly shop trout flies, we
have specific imitations of all the insects in
the North Platte River (Miracle Mile) and in
all stages of life that are applicable to
fishing. If you want to fish better, more
realistic trout flies, have a much higher
degree of success, give us a call. We not
only will help you with selections, you will
learn why, after trying Perfect Flies, 92%
of the thousands of our customers will use
nothing else. 1-800-594-4726
The hatches vary some depending on the
section of the river but the insects listed
below are plentiful throughout most of the
stream from its headwaters to its lower
section. During the early season, before
runoff, the main hatches consist of
Western March Browns and Blue-winged
Olives. The BWOs can start as early as
March but April usually is the most
consistent time for the hatch to begin.
There's also a Fall hatch of the BWOs. It
usually takes place from late September
and throughout most of the month of
Of course, midges will work well anytime
the water is too cold for most other
insects. There's also plenty of small black
winter stoneflies that hatch in the early
season, even when there's snow on the
You will find some hatches of Salmonflies
become to come off in early July in the fast
water sections of the river. LIttle Yellow
Stoneflies are also plentiful in some areas
in late July and early August.
Within a week or two of the end of the
Salmonfly hatch in July, you will usually
find Golden Stoneflies beginning to hatch.
The hatch last into the month of August,
depending on the location on the river.
Both the Salmonflies and Golden Stoneflies
start hatching in the lower section and move
upstream as the days go by.
The first caddisflies to hatch are the Little
Black Caddis, called the Mothers Day hatch
in most places in the West. This hatch starts
in the lower section of the river in late April
and last about a month. In late June and
early July, there's plenty of Spotted Sedges
that begin to hatch.
The next most important caddisfly hatch are
the Green Sedges. They hatch from May
through August, depending on the species.
Imitations of the Green Rock Worms, or
their larvae, work year-round.
In late June, usually before the runoff ends,
Pale Morning Duns will start hatching. There
are a few Green Drakes that hatch but the
numbers are usually fairly low. There are
also some Flavs, or Small Western Green
Drakes, but the numbers of them are
The PMD hatch will last most of the summer
and is the most consistent mayfly hatch. In
some areas of the fast water you will find
some Pink Ladies that hatch in late August
Late Summer, in August and September,
terrestrials will play an important role in the
trout's diet. Don't forget imitations of
grasshopper, ants and beetles.
The fishing is great provided the flows are
decent. Basically, catching good flows is a
big gamble during the summer months.
Fall may be the best time to fish the river.
Flows are usually decent and the brown
trout spawn and become aggressive.
North Platte River (Miracle Mile)
11/25/13 Long time customer reporting
catching some big brown trout on our Brown
sculpin. Several bows caught on our Scud.
Ordered some more miles including BWO
nymphs. Reported only hatches were midges.
He had little action on midges.
12/18/13 Cold weather has been a
problem. Not with the water but the roads
and ice in the guides of the few that tried
to fish. Local contact reporting no fish
being caught during the last week that he
01/07/14 We have not received any
reports from customers fishing the Miracle
Mile the past several days. We assume it
is because of the very cold weather.
December 09, 2017
(See Archive at Bottom Of Page)
01/16/14 Still no reports but a week of
cold but clear weather is ahead for the
01/30/14 No reports of anyone fishing
last week.The weather has created some
02/06/14 Sorry, we still don't have any
reports from anglers fishing the Miracle
02/13/14 Much better weather is in the
forecast this coming week and anglers
should be able to catch some trout. Let us
hear from you.
02/20/14 Customer ordering some small
size 20 BWO's reporting he spotted some
hatching this past week. He caught a
couple of nice trout.
02/27/14 Rainbows getting into the
spawning mode, water temps averaging
about 40 degree and good wintertime
03/06/14 The weather will remain a little
warmer than normal and conditions are
decent for this time of the year. No
reports from last week.
03/13/14 Our local contact reporting
fishing was good this past week but he
saw or talked to no one else fishing.
03/20/14 Same angler above reported
catching some more trout and seeing two
other anglers fishing.
03/27/14 The weather continues to
warm up some with little snow in the
forecast. This changes the water temp
very little but makes it better on the
04/03/14 Better weather is in the forecast
but no reports from anyone fishing this past
04/10/14 The water is still cold (mid
forties) although the weather has been
and will continue to be warmer. We still
|Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (email@example.com)
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.
2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.
3. Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.
All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $50 are shipped via
04/17/14 High flows slowed the action this
past week and we didn't receive any
reports from anyone fishing.
05/01/14 For some reason we didn't get
any reports from last week. Conditions
look good for the coming week, with much
05/08/14 Current flow is at 1520 cfs. No
reports from anyone fishing this past week.
05/15/14 Higher flows have slowed the
action on the Miracle Mile the past few
days. No reports from anyone fishing.
05/22/14 Stream levels are apt to be
high due to higher discharges from
rising upstream water.
05/29/14 Expect discharges to be high from
rising water upstream for the next few days.
06/05/14 No reports from anyone fishing this
past week. High discharges and water levels.
06/12/14 Watch the discharges. Currently
the levels are fine but subject to change. No
reports from anyone fishing this past week.
06/19/14 No reports from this past week.
Current conditions are good and more
insects are hatching. PMDs are showing up.
07/03/14 Conditions have been about as
good as the get and plenty of trout are
being caught. One customer reported
catching some very large trout this past
couple of days.
07/14/17 Anglers and customers reporting
good fishing for the past two weeks. The
water levels are scheduled to drop down
for maintenance work and floating the
river may not be feasible.
07/24/14 PMDs, spotted sedges, Yellow
Sallies and terrestrials are working. Levels
have been up and down the past two weeks.
07/31/14 A customer ordering more flies
this past week reported he caught
several nice size trout in the wade area.
08/14/14 We didn't receive any reports
from anglers the past week. Conditions
have been good and bad, depending on
08/28/14 Tricos are hatching along with
plenty of caddis. Fishing is average.
09/11/14 Water has been off color lately
and not many fish being caught.
09/25/14 The water is still a little off color
but some trout are being taken on
10/09/14 The Blue-winged olives are
beginning to hatch and other than midges,
will be the main stay of the insects to imitate.
10/16/14 Good conditions continue.
Hatches are subsiding except for midges
10/30/14 No reports from last week but
conditions remain good.
12/25/14 No reports from the past week
01/01/15 Still no reports and conditions are
not that bad.
01/15/15 Local reporting the river is ice
free and very good winter time conditions.
No reports of catches. Most anglers fishing
01/22/15 Still no reports but conditions
02/05/15 One good report from a local
customer from the past two weeks. He
caught several trout on BWO nymphs and
our, Brown Sculpin streamer.
02/12/15 We didn't get any reports
from anglers, but the water is pretty
clear and about 39 degrees.
02/19/15 No reports from the past week
but conditions remain good.
02/26/15 Still no reports from anyone fishing.
03/05/15 Still no reports. The weather
has been fairly decent and so have the
03/19/15 Great warm weather the past
two weeks. Two customers reporting
catching several larger trout drifting the
river. Scuds and brown sculpin streamers
worked best for them.
03/26/15 No reports but conditions
04/02/15 Still no reports but decent
stream levels and weather.
04/23/15 One report the past two week
from customer fishing. Picked up a few
trout on Brown sculpin streams/midges.
05/07/15 Lots of Blue-winged Olives
hatching. It has been fishing good lately.
Flows 1700 cfs
|05/21/15 The Mile is in decent shape and
the "catching" should be good.
06/04/15 High flows due to spring run off.
07/02/15 Lots of aquatic insects, Golden
stones, little yellow stones, Spotted Sedges,
PMDs and others.
07/09/15 Cooler weather - great conditions.
07/16/15 Shoot us an email for a fly list. We
have taken samples of the insects and
know exactly what you should be imitating.
07/23/15 Current flows at 1210 cfs. Lots of
hatches, PMDs, Spotted Sedges, Green
sedges, and more.
08/06/15 Better flows and a good
number of trout being caught. Lots of
PMDs, Tricos and Little Yellow Stoneflies.
08/12/15 The Trico hatch is huge. Fish
morning spinner fall and afternoon hatch.
08/20/15 No reports from anyone fishing
but conditions are excellent and fishing
should be great.
09/03/15 Customer reporting catching
several nice size trout on terrestrials,
hoppers, beetles and streamers.
09/17/15 Lots of nice trout being caught.
Terrestrials, tricos and lots of Spotted
Sedge caddis. It is turning much cooler.
10/01/15 Not many anglers fishing but it isn't
that they couldn't do well. Conditions are
excellent. It is a good time to hook a big
10/21/15 Lots of trout are being caught.
Good stream flow levels and very clear.
Small Blue-winged olive are starting to
11/05/15 The Miracle Mile has lived up to its
reputation for big trout the past two weeks.
Some of the brown trout are in the post-spawn
stage and feeding heavily. The Brown sculpin
streamer is a top choice fly for these trout.
11/19/15 Stream flows have been up but the
water clear. A few large trout have been
caught on streamers the past two weeks.
11/26/15 No reports from anyone fishing the
past week but conditions remain very good.
12/03/15 No reports again. Higher stream
levels and few angler fishing, if any. most are
on the Miracle mile.
12/10/15 No reports from the past week but
conditions are not bad. 845 cfs stream flows.
The stream levels are still low and in
good shape. Midges,midges and
more midges are the flies you need.
Creams and Reds or blood midges
with the larva and pupa rigged in
12/23/15 There is a lot of snow in the forecast
for the coming week with temperatures that
won't exceed freezing. Of course, the tailwater
water temperature is warmer and trout can be
caught, but getting there and fishing won't be
an easy task. Midges and Winter stonefly
nymphs are the choice fflies to use.
01/05/16 The Miracle Mile is surviving the
cold weather thanks to the bottom discharge
of water. The flows are staying about normal
keeping the river at a normal winter level. The
air temperature is a problem for the anglers
but not the fish.
01/21/16 The North Platte Miracle Mile is a
good destination for January. The bottom
discharge keeps the water ranging from 39
degrees to above freezing. Blue-winged olives,
size 20 nymphs and Red and Cream midges
are the flies you need to use. Flows 800 cfs.
02/16/16 The Miracle Mile is getting some
heavy snow and high winds but this should
be clearing us soon. The flows are currently
03/26/16 The Reef is getting into better shape
and a few anglers that fished it recently did
okay. The Gray Reef is doing better.
04/07/16 The flows are okay and the water
slightly stained. Little BWOs and midges are
still the only hatches. Sculpin streamer usually
04/21/16 The river is very high, or in fact,
blown out. It is mostly from melting snow and
rain from the previous week's warm weather. It
is returning to a more normal weather pattern
this coming week. There won't be much
opportunity for fly fishing this coming week.
05/05/16 Lots of fish caught this past week
and some very large ones at that. There is a
lot of rain forecast this coming week, but levels
are good now.
05/19/16 The upper freestone river is in the
full spring runoff mode, high and muddy. The
water eventually comes through the lakes and
the Miracle Mile. Expect high water for a few
06/02/16 The flows are currently at 6770 cfs.
Expect high water for the next few day. The
tailwater can be fished but it is high and fast.
06/09/16 The Miracle Mile needs a miracle for
you to be able to do much fishing this coming
week. It is either let a lot of water through the
dam or flood the lake. It is big time runoff time.
06/16/16 The Brown sculpin and Matuka
sculpin streamers will catch trout in these high
flows. Add split shot a few inches in front of
the fly. Flows are currently just over 7000 cfs,
which is high.
06/23/16 The flows are still very high and
difficult to fish. We would wait to a later time if
you are not local. It can be fished but it would
be mostly streamer fishing. Close to 5000 cfs.
06/30/16 Flows are down to 3250 cfs, which is
still high and fast. Yes, you can fish it but only
in pockets out of the main current with heavy
weighted nymphs and streamers. It should get
better this coming week
07/05/16 The river is flowing at 3005 cfs and
the water mostly clear. There are a lot of
Pale Morning Duns, Spotted Sedges and
Green Sedges, or caddisflies. The late
afternoon egg laying is the best opportunity.
07/21/16 The flows are at 538 cfs, which is
low. There are some good sized trout being
caught and some hatches taking place.
Streamers, sculpin patterns, are working good
early and late. Lots of caddisflies.
08/04/16 The stream is flowing at 1189 cfs
and is up a little. Great for streamer fishing.
Our Brown and White belly Sculpin and
Matuka sculpin flies work good.
08/28/16 Lots of Tricos are hatching --the white
winged curse to some but imitated correctly,
they catch trout. The males and females are
completely different colors. Morning spinner
falls and later hatches.
08/25/16 The MM is flowing at 768 cfs.
Although there is some floating aquatic
vegetation, streamer fishing in the early
mornings is working. Trico spinner falls and
hatches are going full stream.
09/01/16 Stream levels is at 518 cfs.These
are low flows allowing easy wading. Lot of
Tricos are hatching. Fish the morning
spinner fall followed by the hatch.
09/08/16 Customers reported catching some
nice trout over the holiday weekend. Flow
are 520 cfs. Good wading conditions exist
but as always, be careful.
09/15/16 The flows are at 535 cfs. Sculpin
streamers, Tricos, little BWO nymphs,
spotted sedge caddis, and Mahogany duns
are hatching. The weather will be cooling
09/22/16 The flows are at 525 cfs. It is raining
right now and there's a chance of more
through Saturday. The cloud cover should
help the streamer fishing. Terrestrials are still
catching trout according to our customers.
09/29/16 09/29/16 Good weather forecast and
levels flowing at 522 cfs. Good conditions all
the way around. Streamers like our Brown
Sculpin are working good for big browns.
10/14/16 Blue-winged olives and cream midges
are hatching very good. Tricos are about gone
but the pre-spawn browns are eating sculpin
and our Brown sculpin streamer is catching
10/28/`16 It is streamer time on the Miracle mile.
Brown sculpin, White Belly sculpin, Matuka Olive
or Black sculpin are the top choices.
11/24/16 The river is in good shape flowing at
531 cfs, which is good. Streamers like our
Brown and White Belly sculpin are catching
some nice trout. Blue-winged olives and
midges are the only hatches.
12/08/16 The river is flowing at 543 cfs, which
is good. Midges, creams and reds, are
hatching. Fish the larva and pupa in tandem.
12/22/16 Be sure to check the condition of the
roads. They have been in bad shape. The
stream levels are fine and the water about 39
degrees. Midges (Creams and Reds) and
Sculpin Streamers will catch trout.
01/05/17 This past week was very cold with
lots of snow and there was road problems. The
weather should warm up some by late Sunday
and next week is looking much better. Midges
and Winter stoneflies are hatching.
01/12/17 The weather will still be below
freezing but much warmer and little snow for
the coming week. Fish midges, Creams and
Reds, with the larva and pupa in tandem.
Winter stonefly nymphs will also work.
02/02/17 There is no rain or snow in the
forecast this coming week, but cold. The
weather will be much better this coming
weekend. Fish midges, Creams and Reds and
02/09/17 Flowing at 506 cfs or a good level.
Streamers like the Black Matuka and Brown
sculpin are a good fly choice when it is
snowing or there cloud cover, otherwise, fish
Cream or Blood midges.
02/16/17 The flows are at 535 cfs. There is
no chance of snow and the daily high
temperature is going into the fifties.
02/23/17 The flows are up to 1260 cfs. This is
streamers water. Fish the Black Matuka sculpin.
Midges are still the main insects to imitate.
03/23/17 The flows are at 1200 cfs and the
water very clear. Fish are being caught on
Red (blood) and Cream midge larva and pupa,
and sculpin streamers.
04/20/17 The stream levels are in good shape
for this time of the season and the water is
clear. Anglers are catching trout. Sculpin
streamer and Midges, Cream and light Green
05/04/17 The flows are up to 3200 cfs but
mostly clear. Blue-winged olives are hatching.
Fish the edges of the fast current seams and
channels. Rainbows are spawning.
05/18/17 The flows are at 1470 cfs. The
stream is in good shape with some nice trout
being caught. Blue-winged olives are
hatching. Sculpin streamers are working.
06/23/17 The flows are up high but it is still
possible to fish. We don't recommend it as a
destination trip at this time. Wait until the
runoff if over.
07/07/17 The flows are in good shape and
lots of hatches are taking place. PMDs,
Golden stones, Spotted sedges, Green
sedges, little Yellow stones and more.
07/31/17 Great Conditions exist. Good
stream levels and lots of insects hatching.
Little Yellow stones, Tricos, PMDS, spotted
sedges, green sedges and cream midges.
08/23/17 Excellent conditions. There are still
lots of hatches taking place. We received two
good reports recently. Flows are about 1000
cfs. Hoppers, Carpenter ants and Japanese
Beetles are working good.
9/23/17 Flows are still at 1000 cfs, or winter
levels. Lots of trout are being caught and
some on top. BWO hatches and Midges
galore. Sculpin streamers are getting the big
10/02/17 The discharges and stream levels
are fine and Midges at at time, BWOs
hatching. Use Sculpin streamers, Red and
Cream midges and Aquatic worms.