.............................Fly Fishing Yellowstone National Park

02/10/09

I am calling this series Yellowstone Journals and Additional Information. It is a collection of a
rambling mixture of experiences on the streams with some notes, tips and additional
information thrown in. Some of this comes from my video tape logs (record of video shot)
and  notes made on my daily note books.

Fly Fishing Nez Perce Creek

Today I am jumping back to the Firehole River Drainage and Nez Perce Creek. It
is the largest tributary of the Firehole excluding maybe the upper Iron Creek and
the Little Firehole. I am not certain how they would compare in size. Nez Perce
Creek is a long stream. It is one of the streams that the trout escape to when the
Firehole River gets too warm to fish. By the way, that is normally around the first
of July but varies considerably due to the weather and snow pack.  

Nez Perce begins at Lake Mary. It is approximately ten to fifteen feet wide until it
gets to near the Firehole River. There is widens out to a larger stream. From the
bridge at the Grand Loop Road to the Firehole River, the stream is very shallow
with almost continuous riffles. The stream fishes much better from the bridge
upstream for a few miles. The narrower stream section has some deeper water
areas that tend to hold fish. There is little timber along this stream. It is mostly all
wide open meadows with grass banks along the stream.

The fish are usually on the small side. Most of them are brown trout that
average about nine inches. The largest one we have caught there was probably
twelve inches. There are some rainbows in the lower section below the bridge
but that is mainly in the early and late season when the water is cool. Brook
trout exist in the upper portion of the stream. The stream isn't heated with water
from geysers but it is shallow and exposed enough to get rather warm in the
hottest part of the season. It doesn't compare to the Firehole, however, and
trout will move up into the stream during the summer.

We have fished the little stream several times in the lower section and almost
always managed to catch a lot of small trout. We have ventured upstream on
two occasions for a couple of miles. Both times we were able to catch several
trout but again, our largest was only about twelve inches. We have not caught
any of the larger trout that move upstream from the Firehole. We have spotted a
few that were much larger than that, so larger fish do move into the stream.
However, I don't think there are very many of them that make the move from the
warm Firehole. I believe far more move upstream in Iron Springs Creek and the
Little Firehole River.

If you want to catch a lot of small trout, you can do it in Nez Perce Creek. I am
not about to say you can't catch a large trout there because I am sure it is
possible. However, I wouldn't give it a very high rating as a big fish destination.

Copyright 2009 James Marsh
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