Trouts Journal

PHOTO ESSAY // Brookies with Bob

Ivan Orsic / Jul 14, 2023

Ole Bobby Reece has always been one of the honorary captains of the proverbial "good dudes" club. A fly fishing guide, life coach, and griller of the world's most delicious chicken thigh lunch in the land, Bob has the distinct honor of guiding on Horse Creek Ranch up near Cheyenne. We've featured Bob and this special piece of land more than a time or two on the YouTube channel over the years. We're always honored to get an invite up north from Bobby Tight Loops. Before making the two-hour drive from Denver, Tanner wanted to make one thing clear. We better be fishing one of the brookie lakes. Why? Well, Tanner has a pretty well known affinity for brook trout...and with good reason, they're pretty good looking.

As Tanner and I made the trek north, we found ourselves driving through some threatening clouds and thick, low-hanging fog. I had a puffy on. It was cold. Downright strange weather for a July.

"Hey, we'll take it. I guess..."

Luckily for us, as we pulled up to the club house to meet Bob, the skies started to clear.

After catching up, we hopped in the trucks and followed Bob up over the impressive outcroppings that frame the entrance of the property, past a couple herds of pronghorns, and climbed over one last ridge until one of our favorite brookie lakes came into view. Excitement was palpable. It's July, which means fish should be munching on damsels and callibaetis. We rigged up and trekked across the greenery (especially for July).

Of course, what's a fishing trip without a couple good fishing dogs. It should be to no ones surprise that Gus made the journey. Bob's new german shepherd pup Greta joined us, as well. You wanna talk about polar opposites. Gus, the ole wily veteran, only runs when he has to. Greta, on the other hand, runs because she wants to. And she wants to run all damn day. She wasn't hurting for energy and chased everything that moved...including the birds.

Things started a little slow for the boys. While we saw plenty of fish eating damsels off the surface, they seemed to have little interest in our imitations. We spread out and worked the water. A couple fly changes later and Tanner found the ticket with a damsel nymph hanging below a twitched hopper. Bob stayed true to himself and switched out his damsel for another damsel. He was on the board a couple minutes later. The camera man on the other hand...well, eventually I started fooling some trout with a JC Special and old trusty - the purple parawulff.

The JC Special brought a couple brookies to hand...

We got into a good little rhythm and started picking up fish pretty consistently until Bob started the grill up to make some grilled chicken thighs and peppers. Nothing quite like the distraction of Bob's grilling skills to slow down the fishing. We reeled up and sat down for one of the best shore lunches you can have. Bob's a wizard with that grill.

After lunch, we hopped back in the trucks and made a quick five minute drive to the last lake of the day. Greta was patrolling every square inch of that ranch and Gus was ready for a nap.

We all worked our way up the same bank. The wind had picked up something fierce. The damsels were nowhere to be found. But, the callibaetis didn't seem to mind. Despite some pretty distinct wave action, we still saw fish busting mayflies some 40 feet off the bank. No better time to tie on the double purple parawulff rig. You might say..well, that seems redundant. And you'd be correct. But, why not?

Tanner was finding his fair share, as well.

Bye now, brook trout.

Bob and Greta worked the shallows with a mayfly imitation and found some success, as well.

A day well spent, to say the least. Bye now.

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