Fly Fishing the Idaho Backcountry

With the Flying B Ranch
By Flying B Guide Jeremi Syron

For the past six years Tom Ciriack and his two children, Callahan and Hailey, have joined us in the backcountry fly fishing for west slope cutthroat trout at our Osprey Creek backcountry camp.

As always, our horses and pack mules were ready and eager waiting on our group to gather and eventually take us on the five mile trail ride into camp. Tom, however, preferred to make the trip on foot with Flying B fishing guide, Rich Coe. This year our horses “Travis”, “Laney” and “B-bop” carried the gear loads while “Stud Muffin” and “Dutchboy” carried Hailey and Callahan, both experienced riders.

Cold drinks and lunch were waiting for us under the shade tent after our hour and forty-five minute leisure ride into camp. Following a satisfying lunch prepared by Chef Ryan, the wading boots were tightened up, and we headed down to the creek.

Osprey Creek is a wet wade stream with flyfishing methods of dry fly and nymphing. The fishing was excellent right from the start with fly patterns including the stimulator, parachute adams, and caddis all being taken. We had a successful, fun afternoon at the “cocktail” hole located near camp.

Hailey enjoyed this first afternoon relaxing and reading a book while Chef Ryan prepared halibut, rice and fresh asparagus for dinner. As usual, the meal was awesome and was followed up with strawberry shortcake for dessert.

Fly Fishing Day Two:

We fished the "bathtub hole", the "corner" and ended at the "handicap hole" the next morning. After some great fishing we made our way back downstream to camp where Ryan had cheeseburgers waiting for us. We spent the afternoon at “little weitas,” a fishing hole a short hike above camp.

The water felt refreshing as the sun danced across the stream and we picked our way through the maze of rocks from fishing hole to fishing hole. That evening Chef Ryan prepared ribs along with coleslaw, beans, and cornbread. We had a delicious Dutch oven pineapple upside down cake for dessert.

Day Three:

The next morning Callahan and Hailey went for a horseback ride up from camp riding by West Virginia flats, passing the old trapper cabin which is still equipped with bear traps. They continued across Johnagan Creek then upstream several miles along Weitas Creek.

Meanwhile, Tom fished the “middle creek” hole just upstream. All met back in camp for grilled ham and cheese sandwiches. After lunch as the temperature began rising, Tom and Rich went back to the “cocktail hole” while Callahan and Hailey jumped in the tubes to float down to “cocktail hole” where they each grabbed a fly rod and started to fly fish for cutthroat. Hailey caught her first fish ever in Weitas this trip!

Way to go Hailey!

Back at camp we were greeted by the smell of prime rib that Ryan was preparing for dinner. Ryan had walked the four miles back to camp picking huckleberries along the trail. Along with the prime rib we enjoyed Dutch oven potatoes, candied carrots, and of course huckleberry cheesecake.

Pack-Out Day Four:

The pack-out day found fishing guide Rich, Tom, and Callahan hiking downstream for more fishing. The action was non-stop at the “swimming hole” as the cutthroats favored dry flies during this trip.

Hailey relaxed around camp that morning while the pack loads were made. She enjoyed a final horseback ride back to the truck on a trail that was new to her.

Once back at the lodge, we reminisced about the trip as we enjoyed a rack of pork for dinner.

Tom is a longtime guest and friend of the Flying B Ranch. Besides joining us for fine fly fishing in Idaho, he has joined us for wingshooting trips as well as backcountry elk hunting trips. Thanks for a great trip Tom, Callahan, and Hailey. We look forward to another adventure next summer.

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