As we joyously walking down the trail after a great day of fishing and spectacular views, I turn around when Trevor shouts in a whisper, “Blair! Bear!” I then turn to Zach, and in the same manner whisper, Bear!
Zach and I walked back up the trail about 10 feet to Trevor and Jeff expecting to see a bear off in the distance, and much to our dismay, there was an incredibly large black bear slouched in the bushes no more than 15 yards away. With both bear spray and cameras in hand we stared at the marvelous creature for about 10 seconds before we cautiously made our way back down the trail back to the truck.
All morning on the hike in and while fishing, we spoke to each other about how this was “bear country.” And by “bear country” I mean that I have never in my life seen habitat that looks more inviting to bears than that surrounding Slough Creek in Northeast Yellowstone. Even for Yellowstone National Park, a place revered for bear sightings, this was exceptional. So it’s fitting that we had our first bear encounter while fishing the backcountry at Slough Creek. Now on to the fishing…
My college professors would not approve of citing Wikipedia, even for a casual blog post, but the Wikipedia page for Slough Creek says that “the cutthroat fishing is some of the best in the world,” and I would have to agree. With countless fish and opportunities to cast to them, I could not have asked for a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon. I completed my grand slam, if you will, for the summer by knocking a cutthroat trout off the list, Jeff caught the beautiful cut that he’s been chasing all summer, Thacia caught her first fish on a fly, Zach landed six, and we even saw a bear. Pretty awesome day if you ask me. Be sure to check out the video below.