Welcome to the Wyoming Fly Casters
Fremont Canyon Grand Opening Ceremony
by Clarke Turner
Saturday August 3, 2003 marked one of the greatest days for our club. The Grand Opening ceremony for the returned flows to Fremont Canyon was held below Pathfinder Dam at 10:00 that morning. Each and every member can feel very proud about the significant role the Wyoming Fly Casters played in making this a reality. A wide range of speakers were present.
Our own Ron Dutton, represented our club and received a rousing ovation from the crowd (the members present were a spirited bunch). He presented an outstanding speech, providing a succinct history covering the last 15 years of efforts between the Game and Fish, The Bureau of Recreation, the county, several other organization and individuals along with our club.
Not many clubs can say they have been involved with recreating a river section from scratch that is destined to be another blue ribbon trout fishery in the very near future. Comments supplied by several of the speakers were: Game and Fish Commissioner: “ This is the best project I have ever seen.”, Bureau of Recreation Commissioner: “ When I return to Washington I’m going to tell everyone this is the best example of a successful public/private partnership I’ve seen and one that exemplifies what we are striving to accomplish.” And Regional Bureau of Recreation Director: “You all should be very proud of what you have accomplished.”
Our John Dolan and Jim Sparks floated several of the dignitaries down the river below Grey Reef after the ceremony. They all caught several fish and were very impressed with the quality of the river.
After the ceremony many members walked the new public access section where the Game and Fish have skillfully sculpted a stream channel within the old river bottom. They have done a beautiful job with many differing sections representing classic runs, seams and pools. This section will offer something for everyone. Our President quickly brought out his rod and began to fish.
“ Any bets on who will catch the first fish; our President or the pelican?”
Our club erected a stone monument that was unobtrusively laid into the river bank at the entrance to the public access in appreciation for many of the donors who helped provide the funds necessary for our club to buy a $75,000 easement from the Cardwell Ranch which was then transferred over to the Game and Fish. A time capsule listing all the donors was buried under the stone.
I’m sure our club members will be spending many enjoyable days on this stretch of the river, one that we can say we helped bring about.