Photo Essay: Out West

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    Zach Matthews
    The Itinerant Angler

    Ian Crabtree and I hit several rivers out West, and we even got to meet up with board members Joel Thompson and Ed Felker in Gardiner, which was a real treat.

    This was my fish of the trip, so may as well get it out of the way early.  Twenty-one inches on the Henry’s Fork, took a pheasant tail dropped off a fat callibaetis in heavy winds.  Ian is a fair hand with a camera as well as an outright stick with a fly rod, which I really appreciate in a fishing partner.

    That’s Zach Wheeler, who straight up volunteered to guide us for free and was a complete bad ass.  He told the funniest story I have heard in about ten years, but I’ll just tell you the punchline: “She was seventy-one.”

    Rene and Bonnie Harrop.  Two of the nicest people I have ever met.  Bonnie even made us cookies.

    They are huge fans of Ian, which was cool to see.

    Another Henry’s Fork bow.

    Hey guys!

    Aaand back to work.

    Screw it, photo op.

    Some Slough Creek action.  Ian absolutely waxed them here.

    Probably my biggest Slough Creek cuttie, at about 17″.  We stayed in the First Meadow; there were a million hoppers and some tricos and stuff coming off.  Ian kept low and stealthy as is his wont and outfished me 2:1 on a Parachute Adams.  Between us I think we may have stuck about half the fish in the creek.

    We stayed at TroutHunter lodge on the Henry’s Fork and then moved around camping the second half of the week.  One night it got cold enough to freeze the inside of the tent as well as my wet sandals.  I really felt for Ian in his 40 degree bag then, let me tell you.

    I was introduced to the Moscow Mule back in Bozeman.

    Zach Matthews
    The Itinerant Angler

    By the way, these are still in the First Meadow:

    That younger me was from 2006.

    Matt Tucker

    Awesome Zach.

    Eric WellerEric Weller

    If I could have seen this sooner, my buddy just flew home tonight and I know he fished the Slough.

    Zach Matthews
    The Itinerant Angler

    Eric –

    Is your buddy Cade Buchanan?

    Neal Osborn

    Great trip Zach and Ian!

    Eric WellerEric Weller

    No but I’ll talk to my buddy tomorrow, his fight doesn’t arrive until 1155pm

    Matt LewisMatt Lewis

    Awesome report and fish! What all is in the drink?

    Allan DozierAllan Dozier

    That first photo looks like the bluffs at Wood Road 16?

    I plan on living forever, so far so good.

    Brad Isles

    @Matt – Vodka, ginger beer, 1 tsp. sugar syrup, fresh lime juice, 1 sprig fresh mint and a slice of lime is the standard… But the copper cup makes it.


    I learned about Moscow Mules at the bar in Melrose, MT. They have cups made from copper mined down the road in Butte. Fortunately you can walk across the parking lot to the Sportsman’s Motel!

    Matt – You can buy the cups online. My wife gave me a set last summer.

    And Zach, I’m still jealous that *you* didn’t send my hat until *after* I got back from the Henry’s Fork! Nice pics and cool that you got to meet Rene on the stream.

    Matt LewisMatt Lewis

    Sounds like a good drink. Don’t see too many around here though, I would have to make my own!

    Grant Wright

    Great stuff — A late season fishing trip/early season bird hunt out there is a trip that is near the top of my bucket list.




    Great meeting up with you and Ian, Zach. The second meadow is worth the hike by the way!

    Tim AngeliTim Angeli

    Good stuff Zach.


    Hero Shots…Of Yourself…On Your Own Site…


    Hero Shots…Of Yourself…On Your Own Site…

    Being a prick for no reason….to the creator….of a site you spend a lot of time on…..

    douglas mc.

    Hero Shots…Of Yourself…On Your Own Site…

    If I created a site as nice as this, I would post pictures of my smiling mug with every single fish I caught.


    Good stuff Zach!

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