explore the Snowy Range, Sierra Madre Mountain Range & Upper North Platte River Valley
fishing, boating & floating
In Southern Wyoming, there are plenty of opportunities to whet an angler’s appetite with good access to rivers, lakes & streams amidst picturesque mountain scenery.
The four main rivers in the area, the Upper North Platte, the Encampment, the Laramie and the Little Snake, offer fishermen and outdoor enthusiasts the opportunity to fish, float and hike their many miles of unspoiled beauty. Local guides and outfitters are available for guided fishing, scenic float and whitewater float trips.
The Upper North Platte River
is regarded by the Wyoming Game & Fish Department as the “Premier Blue Ribbon Wild Trout Stream in Wyoming”, with over 3,200 catchable fish per mile. Flowing north, it enters Wyoming through the Platte River Wilderness Area and famed Northgate Canyon. It then flows north through three distinct eco zones; mountain conifer forest, valley floor hay meadow and finally majestic desert vistas all encompassing over 150 miles of free flowing waters (no dams), with only four miles of highway frontage.
The Upper North Platte is also one of Wyoming’s best rivers for float trips, ranging from whitewater thrills to leisurely drifting. Typical floating craft used include inflatable rafts, flat-bottom boats, canoes and kayaks.
With the exception of the Northgate Canyon and the stretch below Six Mile Gap, the majority of the Upper North Platte River tends to offer easier floats and good fishing during moderate flows. See the UPPER NORTH PLATTE RIVER MAP for public access areas and relative float distances between access points.
The Encampment River
flows into Wyoming through the majestic Encampment River Wilderness and its ruggedly beautiful canyon. A well maintained 15-mile trail provides access to this sensational area of the River. Also given Blue Ribbon status as a highly rated wild trout fishery, it flows into the Upper North Platte River about seven miles north of Riverside and Encampment. There are three public access points on the Encampment River: the State section access, the Odd Fellows access and the Riverside access. Typical floating craft used include inflatable rafts and kayaks, however canoes are not recommended. Three diversion dams between Odd Fellows and Treasure Island access points add to the adventure on this River. Access points are denoted on VIP'S SNOWY RANGE & SIERRA MADRE RECREATION MAP.
The Laramie River to the east and the Little Snake River to the west also offer wonderful scenery and high quality fishing, but with more limited access. Colorado River Cutthroat, one of Wyoming’s four cutthroat sub-species, are native to the Little Snake.
The Encampment River
The most prominent still water fisheries in Southern Wyoming are Seminoe Reservoir, High Savery Reservoir, Hog Park Reservoir, Saratoga Lake, Rob Roy Reservoir and Lake Hattie. Lake and stream fishing is also available on the many waters that straddle beautiful Highway 130, the Snowy Range Scenic Byway. See HIGH ELEVATION LAKES MAP.
Walleye fishermen prefer Seminoe Reservoir with over 20,000 acres of water and 180 miles of shoreline. Of all of the places in southern Wyoming where walleye are found, Seminoe is where they are most abundant.
Seminoe is located north of Sinclair, Wyoming. Fed by the North Platte and Medicine Bow Rivers, Seminoe offers great fishing for rainbow, brown and cutthroat trout and ever abundant walleye.
It is also home to Seminoe State Park--which has three camping areas with boat docks and a day use area that features the largest sandy beach in Wyoming.
Beautiful Seminoe Canyon winds north as it cuts through the Seminoe Mountains before descending to the famed “Miracle Mile”. This 7-mile stretch of water between the Kortes Dam and Pathfinder Reservoir garners its name for its quality blue ribbon trout fishing. Trophy size trout caught here weigh 5 to 10 pounds.
Hog Park Reservoir
is located approximately 45 minutes southwest of Encampment in the Sierra Madre Mountain Range and is a favorite spot for fishing and boating. It is managed for rainbow trout, but also holds splake, brook and brown trout. There are two picnic areas, a campground with shoreline fishing and a boat dock.
Hog Park Reservoir was formed in the 1960’s when an earthen dam was constructed to store water for municipal use in Cheyenne.
High Savery Reservoir
is located 38 miles south of Rawlins and 25 miles west of Saratoga. High Savery is the only place in Wyoming to catch tiger trout (brown trout/brook trout cross) and the only place in Southern Wyoming to catch Colorado River cutthroat. Kokanee salmon are also plentiful here. Good access is available via dirt roads and public walk-in access. Parking is restricted to designated areas only.
Managed by the Wyoming Water Development Commission, High Savery Reservoir has a cement boat ramp and restrooms. There is no camping at the boat dock or around the Reservoir, however camping is available in the nearby Sierra Madre Mountain Range.
Savery Creek tailwaters below the High Savery Dam offer good rainbow trout and Colorado cut-throat trout fishing.
is located five minutes north of Saratoga and is stocked with rainbow and brown trout. A 50-site campground, operated by the Town of Saratoga, a boat dock and restrooms are accessible from the Highway 130 entrance. The Storer-Saratoga Lake Wetland is home to hundreds of species of birds including herons, ibis, loons, geese, ducks, pelicans, rails, bitterns, coots, egrets, eagles, hawks and osprey.
Area waters contain several coexisting trout species such as brook, brown, cutthroat, golden, rainbow, splake (brook trout/lake trout cross) and tiger (brown trout/brook trout cross). The only native trout to Wyoming is the cutthroat. Southern Wyoming’s three subspecies of cutthroat, the Snake River, the Colorado River and the Bear River cutthroat, can be distinguished from other trout by the orange/red markings around the jaw.
Kokanee, a variety of sockeye salmon, are found in Lake Hattie (along with Bear River cutthroat) and in the High Savery Reservoir.
Wyoming fishing licenses are required for anglers 14 years of age and older. All license holders, except daily licenses, are required to have a conservation stamp. Licenses, fishing regulations, boating regulations and public access information are available locally and through the Wyoming Game and Fish Department at 307-745-4046 or online.
Observance of state fishing regulations is a must. There may be limits on the numbers, species and size of fish that may be taken, as well as on the tackle and equipment you may use. Local sporting goods and fly shops are a good source for current insect hatches.
One of the best experiences in southern Wyoming is floating and fishing the Upper North Platte River and the Encampment River. Professional area guides are here to help you learn from them and increase your chances of success. Plus they know how to navigate Wyoming waters safely.
VIP'S RECOMMENDED FISHING GUIDES
VIP'S RECOMMENDED OUTDOOR SHOPS
IN THIS SECTION
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by Visions In Progress (V. I. P.) Marketing, LLC
© 2017 Cindy Loose, Visions In Progress (V. I. P.) Marketing LLC. All rights reserved.
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