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

04/24/09


Fly Fishing the Yellowstone River - Part 4
Black Canyon

Black Canyon extends downstream from the confluence of the Lamar River to
within about three miles of Gardner. The river flow along near the edge of the
park about a mile above the Bear Creek confluence near Gardner. This section
of the Yellowstone is about nineteen miles long.  The river flows through the
canyon the entire way. The canyon walls are steep to straight up in many places
but not that high above the river. However, in many areas it is not possible to
get down to the river from the Yellowstone River Trail that follows along the
river. From Tower Junction to the end of the Black Canyon, there are four
access points via official trails. Several backcountry campsites are located along
the river.

The first place to access the upper end of the Black Canyon is from the
Yellowstone River Trailhead located about a quarter of a mile from Tower
Junction. It is a short hike of about a mile to the river. There are several places
you can get down to the river from the trail which goes along the rim of the
canyon all the way down the canyon.

The next access is the Hellroaring Trail. It is only about a mile hike to river but
there is only one way to fish the river when you get there and it is upstream on
the south side. This is about the closest way to get to where you can fish the
Black Canyon other than at its upper end. The trail crosses the river on a
suspension bridge. You will need to hike another mile downstream to get to the
next point you can access the river.  

The next several miles downstream in the Black Canyon (of which I have never
visited) is about three or four miles from the Grand Loop Road as a crow flies.
The only practical way to fish this long section of the river is to make an
extended hike, staying overnight at the remote backcountry campsites along the
Yellowstone River Trail.

The Blacktail Trial provides the next downstream access to the Yellowstone
River. It goes along the Blacktail Deer Creek. This requires a four mile one-way
hike to reach the river. There is a bridge which allows you to cross the river to
reach the Yellowstone River Trail on the opposite side of the river.

The next place you can access the river by an official trail is very near Gardner.

Copyright 2009 James Marsh
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