Time: 11:00AM – 5:00PM
Location: Tarryall Fishing Club upper access
Fish Landed: 12
In 1982 I hired Gregg Sutherland as my summer intern when I was Manager of District Accounting at Air Products. Gregg was from Casper, WY and working on his MBA from Wharton at the time. Gregg and I stayed in touch, and he and I eventually ended up in Denver together. Gregg purchased a cabin in South Park a number of years ago, and I visited with him then as he was beginning the task of remodeling.
Earlier this year when I was attempting to find a partner for my Alaska trip I contacted Gregg, but he was too busy with work and had another trip he’d already booked to hunt in Africa. While Amy was visiting in early September, Gregg called to chat but I was out of cell range so I returned his call on my return trip from the Arkansas River on Sunday, September 23. Gregg invited me to join him at his cabin during the weekend of September 30 – October 2 and I accepted.
Gregg’s fishing vest and other valuables got stolen the previous week, so I met him on Friday evening at Bass Pro Shop as he purchased a vest full of goodies including flies, hemostats, nippers, split shot, strike indicators, etc. His total bill to replace his fishing vest was $650! Next we drove to his house in Golden to pick up Angie, his golden retriever, and then we stopped at the supermarket in Aspen Park to buy groceries for the weekend. We arrived at the cabin in South Park near Tarryall Reservoir late on Friday night and slept in until around 8AM. By the time we ate breakfast and organized everything, we arrived at the stream by 11AM.
The residents of Lost Creek Ranch pay homeowners’ dues which gains them access to 9 miles of private stream water and three trout ponds stocked with fish. Gregg and I parked at the upper access point and then hiked east to nearly the middle access.
Tarryall Creek is a relatively small stream approximately 15 feet wide that meanders through the high elevation South Park meadows. Gregg and Angie started out working the right side of the river, and I took the left. I tied on one of the nice gray parachute hoppers I tied on Thursday night and began working the left side of the center run while Gregg cast a stimulator to the right side. I placed a cast in the very top of the middle run and after a three foot drift, a nice twelve inch brown sipped it in. This repeated in the next several runs, and I quickly landed three browns.
Gregg worked the next set of decent stretches of water and finally accepted a gray parachute hopper from me. He began to catch fish on the hopper as well and we continued alternating fifty yard stretches of stream. When Angie was present and I landed a fish, she would splash across the stream and kiss my trout before I released it.
Over the course of the afternoon I landed 12 trout, all browns except for one rainbow. Most of the catches inhaled the parachute hopper, but I did manage to catch one or two on a RS2 and two on a trailing hares ear nymph late in the afternoon. Very late in the day I reached a deep slow moving bend pool and after approaching cautiously noticed a fish sipping something on the surface along the left bank. I expected to have to clip off the hopper and the two trailing nymphs but decided to put a cast in the area where I’d observed the rises. The hopper landed and drifted a couple feet when the sipping brown ambushed it, and I landed a decent brown by Tarryall standards.
Because the stream was low and clear, we skipped quite a bit of shallow water without much structure and fished mostly the runs and pools at the large bends in the creek. The sky clouded over periodically in the afternoon, and there was a very sparse BWO emergence around 2-3PM. This prompted me to add a RS2 to my offerings, but the trout seemed unimpressed.
By five o’clock we were tired and returned to the cabin for some target shooting with Gregg’s rifle.