Yellowstone Fishing Picnic


Mom and I got up early to avoid the senile idiots at the west entrance station to Yellowstone. There are some old fossils that they hire for the summer that can’t even give you the time of day. They can’t even count the change for the entrance fees. My NPS needs help.

The car was packed the night before and we hit the gate before the sun. Driving in Yellowstone without the crowds is heavenly. We stopped in Madison Meadows and listened for some elk – they were singing. Then up the road to Mammoth. There were coyotes all along the road from Norris to Swan Lake Flats.

Joffee LakeWe stopped at headquarters and then had breakfast with J___, a Ranger who had invited us to visit for a bit. We played with the cats and at about 10:00 got in the car for the short drive to Joffee Lake. Mammoth is lower than West Yellowstone and there is still some green grass. There was no one at the lake when we got there and the wind was not blowing yet.

We parked and walked to the picnic spot just a bit away from the yellow aspens. Mom got out her knitting and I put together my fishing stuff. This little lake is full of Brook Trout and I spent the next three hours walking round and round the lake. a-aus-wulfffff.jpgThe water was soooo still that I could see some schools of fish, and there were some big ones. I’ve mastered the delicate presentation necessary for intercepting these little submarines.

I used a Wulff dry fly and caught a bunch of the fish. The fly didn’t get waterlogged and I’m sure glad that I used Frog Hair on it. I tied about a half dozen and lost only two: both in fish at the end of the lake with the boulders – oh well.

Mom made the picnic preparations about 2:00 o’clock and by then the sun had warmed the air to about 75 degrees. We took off our outer wraps and sat in the chairs that we brought and visited about nothing – just like it ought to be. The wine and the brie and the bread was wonderful, (see previous post,) mom brought some salami from the store and we ate some pieces as we talked.

a-moose-elk.jpgI fished for a couple of more hours and then we drove back to West Yellowstone. The park is beginning to feel empty. We stopped at the big moose meadow, (official name = Willow Park,) and watched the head of a moose wandering in the willow thickets. There are many moose here but you have to stop and look for them. We saw three in about an hour. There was even an elk eating grass with the moose. We got home in time for dinner, and the end of a perfect day.

The sun was in our eyes at Madison Junction but it didn’t stop us from seeing the enormous numbers of fishermen that were along the river. There were easily fifty between the junction and 7-mile bridge. I wish them well.


I found a wonderful blog this morning while surfing. It’s called mountainear and it’s written by a woman in Wales. Real honest and earthy. Late last night I added some more pages to the Yellowstone section: geography, geology, the current geo-dynamics, and stuff like that. I’m doing some research on the effects of super volcanoes on the climate and will post that soon.

Today is full of weekend chores, (yeah, I know it’s Monday,) but I just didn’t get to them. Fishing should be good this evening. The clouds are high and thin. I’ve got to run a few miles, and go to the range too – better get with it!

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