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Wyoming: Round 2 with the Wild Bunch Gang

Some days are tougher than others. Today was starting out tougher than usual. A giant half bent nail protruding from the tread of the back left tire was not the end of the world by any means – but the keys had been locked in the car for almost 40 hrs – and the spare tire cranking-rod (whatever that is called) was nowhere to be found.  The nearest town was a long distance away and no cell reception. Today’s trip to the reservoir in search of carp was starting out slowly.

(in this photo: the guides live in this classic trailer nicknamed “poolside” for its awesome blow-up pool out front.  Capacity: 3 guides, 1 couch bum filmer, 4 dogs, 1 cat)

Last year I spent a week filming with the crew at Rock Creek Anglers, a small fly shop located on a dude ranch called the HF Bar, outside of Saddlestring, Wyoming.  I returned again this summer, urged by whispers of a plague-like hopper hatch and because the gang at the ranch are a hell of a lot of fun!  Not far from Holl in the Wall – the famous hideout of Butch Casidy, Sundance and the Wild Bunch Gang – the guides at Rock Creek Anglers take two things very seriously: fishing and partying.  Being a coneseur of both, I pulled the flats boat up to WY with hopes of exploring the many reservoirs in the area for Carp, while also hitting up some of the killer desert trout streams… Alas, I was horrified to learn that an almost county wide pesticide spraying attempt demolished what was sure to be one of the most epic hopper seasons.  Sure, the fish were still there and eager to eat nymphs and streamers – but I was heartbroken.  The opportunity to capture a truly epic giant-trout-hopper-eat-fest was no more… so we turned almost all of our attention to exploring the carp fisheries in the area. Here are a few photos from the water…

fishing the big rock island for carp in wyoming

clark smyth with a nice carp in wyoming

hooking carp on the big rock

We were fortunate to explore some unreal water and found carp in high numbers almost everywhere we looked.  I was really surprised how varied the landscape is in WY, and as always totally blow away at the natural beauty of the desert landscape.  One evening we had the pleasure of watching a massive thunderstorm slide down the distant peaks and roll across the desert, only to hit us in the middle of the night. Here are a few photos and time lapse shots of the storm approaching and arriving:

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