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Box Creek Trail Head, Wyoming


topgun2

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Really nice! Thanks for sharing the coordinates.

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Thanks Bill, pretty pictures, here it is on Google Maps:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/43°51'42.0"N+110°17'39.0"W/@43.8617956,-110.2969969,2759m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d43.8616667!4d-110.2941667

Whenever I see horses and also know that there are bear, moose, deer and free range cattle around, I think TICKS. Is that a problem this time of year?

John Davies

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JD - 

Two months in mostly the same terrain and not one tick.  No moose either but there were cattle, deer, bear and a few horses.  Box Creek campground does have small corals for horses and while I was there a very nice guy and his two horses were camped at the other end of the campground from me.  He asked if I minded him letting his horses graze and since I do like horses I didn't have any problems with it.

Interestingly while I was fishing the Buffalo Fork River one day I was walking across a fairly large sandy area that had a bunch of animal tracks in it.  One of those tracks was from a medium sized grizz and was fairly fresh.  The disturbing thing was that there was only one track - front right paw.  I never could figure out how in the world that bear got just one print in the sand since it was not near the water and too far to jump from the clump of willows.  Strange!

Bill

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  • 2 years later...
On 9/11/2020 at 8:48 AM, topgun2 said:

The Forest Service took away the picnic tables but left the bear boxes.

@topgun2 -- when you are camping in this area, do you keep food in your truck and/or trailer, or do you move it all to a bear box? I'm getting ready to head that direction! Really hoping to do some fishing there. Haven't bought my bear spray yet. 

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If you are specifically talking about staying at Box Creek camp ground you should know that the reason the Forest Service de-commissioned this was due to griz activity.  As I mentioned above, the Forest Service took away the picnic tables but left the bear boxes.  However, I have never seen a bear in the camp ground but I have observed steaming bear scat on the paved road less than a 1/2 mile from Box Creek.  Having said this - I always keep my food in the Oliver.

You should absolutely have bear spray and as you fish you are likely to see bear track - both black and griz along with deer and moose.  I always carry bear spray AND additional protection measures.

As far as fishing goes - the two main streams in that area are the Buffalo Fork and the Snake.  Are you fishing with a guide, and, do you prefer wading or drift boat?

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2 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

If you are specifically talking about staying at Box Creek camp ground

I was looking at FS campground east of Kelly. I've stayed in that area once and 5 minutes after being out walking and bird watching, came back to cabin and left again and discovered a bear with cubs on the road I had just traversed. She was large and focused on eating. I felt lucky because my friend had forgotten to carry the spray on that walk. Now I carry my own, always -- but will need to purchase. 

4 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

You should absolutely have bear spray and as you fish you are likely to see bear track - both black and griz along with deer and moose.  I always carry bear spray AND additional protection measures.

Other measures being any particular caliper? 

4 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

As far as fishing goes - the two main streams in that area are the Buffalo Fork and the Snake.  Are you fishing with a guide, and, do you prefer wading or drift boat?

Fishing -- I would prefer wading actually, but since I just had a hip replacement, I may be sticking to the edges of the water or -- if I can find a guide on short notice -- maybe do a half day trip somewhere. I've fished in Yellowstone, wading with a guide (awesome trip), and did a float trip at Flaming Gorge and also north of Yellowstone in Montana, but have only fished very briefly off the side of the road in Grand Tetons area. 

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Note that THE SINGLE BEST fishing spot that I've found on the Buffalo Fork can be seen in the second (down from the top) photo at the top of this thread.  That spot is located at the bottom of the "cliff" that can be seen on the right side of the photo.  There is a boondocking RV spot or two at the top of that cliff and this is the first turnout on your right as you head east on Buffalo Valley Road.  If you get to this spot you will be able to wade about 1/2 way towards the cliff.  Take anything big (size 8 or so) and chuck it as far as you can towards the cliff.  Work your way down stream to the end of the cliff and then come back and do it again.  There are some 20 to 24 inch fish there.

BIll

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This is great. Is that EAST of the Yellowstone Outfitters (horses) on the map?  

EDIT:

If you prefer, send me a message. I know that great spots are hard to find and appreciate your sharing. 

Edited by Boudicca908

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If you expect to be in griz territory - and any of the area your talking about IS in that territory - then bear spray is your best bet.  However, there are times when bear spray is not practical.  While something like a 357 will penetrate the very thick griz bone the size and mass of that caliber is simply not big enough to do enough damage to stop a decent size griz (unless of course you happen to hit it in exactly the right spot).  Even something like a 10 mm or (even better) a 44 magnum might require more than a single shot to be on target.

For the most part - both the Snake and the Buffalo Fork are probably NOT your best bets given your recent hip replacement.  I'd stick to the Gros Ventre.  The upper regions of this river are the best (above Red Rock and Goosewing ranches) - less crowded and more fish and for the most part easily wadeable.  Usually the road isn't too bad but I would not drag my Ollie up there.  If you really want to fish the Buffalo Fork then head up to Moran and then head east on Route 26 towards Dubois about 3 miles.  Buffalo Valley Road will be on your left (as you head east).  About 11 miles on Buffalo Valley Road the pavement will end and you will be at Turpin Meadows Campground.  Bare left here and park in the day use area and take the trail to the Buffalo Fork.  If the parking lot is near full then I'd simply turn around and go some place else because it is likely that the stream will be crowded.  However, while you are here and if its near lunch time you might want to stop at ranch right there for a decent burger.  If you are in the mood for a GREAT milkshake then stop at the Heart Six Ranch on the way back to Moran - it ain't cheap but it is about the best milkshake I've ever had.

Its been several years since I fished it but if you are a better than average fly fisherman then don't miss a 1/2 day stop at Blacktail Ponds.  This is located about 3/4 mile north/northeast of the airport on the west side of hwy 89.  A beetle/dropper or hopper/dropper is the ticket there.

Another thing to do that is not (usually) crowded would be to stop at the Elk Ranch.  This is owned by the Forest Service or the Park Service and has some good views of the Tetons and old ranch cabins.  You can drive slightly past the buildings, ford a creek with your truck and continue to where the road makes a 90 degree turn to your right.  Park here - the ranch road that would go further to the north is marked as no vehicles allowed.  Take your rod and after a 1/4 mile walk on that ranch road you will be at the Buffalo Fork where you could fish from the bank and wade a little - just be careful of the holes and the main current of the river.  Interestingly, if it weren't for the hip replacement and if you were a bit adventurous then you could keep walking and fishing following the river upstream to the east and fish what is the backside of Pinto Ranch.  As long as you stay in the river or on the right side bank you will be OK.  However, don't get on the left side because that is Pinto Ranch property and they have been known to be pretty touchy about things.

If you need more - just PM me.  I'm happy to share what I know.

Bill

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34 minutes ago, Boudicca908 said:

Is that EAST of the Yellowstone Outfitters (horses) on the map?  

I assume that you are asking about the spot in the photo below the cliff and I assume that you are looking at Google Maps?  If yes, then its location is described above or (I think) about a mile west of the Heart Six Ranch on your right as you drive east.

Bill

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3 minutes ago, topgun2 said:

a GREAT milkshake then stop at the Heart Six Ranch

Been there and looking forward to returning! 

So... I can't run (can't outrun a bear in any case) and I probably should stick to easier trails and wading for this year, but I'll enjoy checking out these locations and thank you so much!  I don't have the means to do much more than piss off a bear.  Are you the person who told the story at the Rally last year about going home and telling someone, "I'm going to need a bigger gun"? 

I'm pretty sure I've been down that road and fished somewhere in the vicinity but it was 2014, I wasn't driving and I didn't mark it on a map. I might recognize it though when I get there. 

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3 minutes ago, Boudicca908 said:

Are you the person who told the story at the Rally last year about going home and telling someone, "I'm going to need a bigger gun"? 

Yep - that was probably me telling (explaining might be a better word) my wife about seeing a large griz track on the side of a stream ( a bit closer to Dubois up near Double Cabin) and then seeing a griz headed toward the same willow patch that I was going to fish around.😁

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14 hours ago, Boudicca908 said:

Is that EAST of the Yellowstone Outfitters (horses) on the map?  

Here are the GPS coordinates for that "turnout" above the cliff I mentioned above:  43.844152, -110.404933

https://www.google.com/maps/place/43°50'39.0"N+110°24'17.8"W/@43.8442913,-110.403903,559m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m4!3m3!8m2!3d43.844152!4d-110.404933?entry=ttu

If you look at this on Google Maps you will see a dirt road that descends from this turnout toward the river.  You can drive (slowly) down this road but DO NOT take your Oliver down there.  It is not level and there isn't enough room to turn the Ollie around.  However, if you continue on down this "road" past where vehicles are blocked and get to the river, then another fine fishing spot is just 75 yards upstream.

Also, given the steepness of the cliff near the paved road, you will want to walk about 1/2 way down this same dirt road and then angle yourself down to the river looking for a spot where you can safely get into the river and then cross to the other side before working your way up to the cliff where the picture above was taken.

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