Fishing the Bull River

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Friday, September 1, 2017

After a little research on the excellent wifi at Fernie RV Resort, I called Snowy Peaks RV in hopes of getting help with the inverter problem. They could take it today! We had a guided fishing trip today at 9:00, so we hurried to hook up and drive 7K to Snowy Peaks. We turned into an RV resort and asked at the office. A nice lady pointed to a building at the back of the campground with a green roof. We drove around to find a big, well-equipped, dual bay shop. Steve came out and asked about the problem. I showed him the inverter and described the problem. I had called Lew Farber, who installed the system, but he never called back. I gave his number to Steve, and told him we had a guided fishing trip and we needed to go. As he looked around, he was impressed with the work Lew had done. He has done solar systems, but this one impressed him. It made me feel better that he knew what the inverter was, telling me what a hybrid Magnum inverter was capable of. I felt like I was in good hands as we left.

Our guide for the day was Nate Kelly, a nice young man who also guides hunting trips. He was born and raised here, hunting and fishing all over. He went to guide school, knowing what he wanted to do from the start. We stopped at Elk River Guiding Company to get some emergers. I have never seen such a great selection of flies, beautiful flies. We would have to come back! As we drove the customary hour up a gravel road, we talked about the Elk River where we had planned to fish. He suggested the Bull, saying the Elk was fishing a bit slow for some reason. We talked about flies, kinds of trout, trucks and tires for these rough roads.

Arriving at a parking area, there were several people camped. Kelly and I said it was likely fished too much, but Nate said these were hunters. It was the first day of bow season, and Nate has a guided hunt this weekend. We geared up, crossed a stream and walked a horse trail to a big pool. We caught several nice fish, and missed a couple of big ones. This is the way the day would go, climbing up and down banks to the trail and hiking to the next pool. At each site, we would catch a few beautiful cutthroats and miss some nice ones. Sometimes the fish would miss the fly. Sometimes we could see the fish coming and set the hook too soon. Other times the fast current would leave us with too much slack in the line, so we couldn’t set it fast enough. As with most streams, it is all catch-and-release with single, barbless hooks, so all fish were quickly released.

We went back to the car for lunch and then went up a smaller creek. Nate knows all the holes and pools and how to get to them. In all the streams we fish here, it seems the fish are in pools, seldom in fast water. They need a place to rest as well as feed. After a full day of hiking up and down streams, banks and trails, we were pretty whooped, but it had been a great day of fishing and Nate did a good job putting us on the fish. On the long drive back, we followed in the dust of another car, but we enjoyed the beautiful scenery and impressive mountains.

It was 7:00 by the time we got to Snowy Peaks RV and everything was closed up for Labor Day weekend. Fortunately the trailer was there, and everything seemed to be working. Steve is a trusting man! He could have left it in the bay, locked up for the weekend, and we would never have found a place to stay. We didn’t know what the charge would be, but we hooked up and went back to the campground.

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