The Waters of Brush Creek Ranch
The Rivers and Lakes of Brush Creek Ranch
Some of the most notable tributaries in North America can be found in Wyoming. The upper reaches of the North Platte River flow through the Sierra Madre National Forest, then enter the Encampment River Wilderness area. French Creek and Brush Creek start high up in the Medicine Bow National Forest and run through our land. These waters, as well as our six different stillwater fisheries, offer guests unparalleled fishing experiences.
Fish at French Creek
Southern Wyoming has some of the most productive trout fisheries in the world, let alone the United States. We are positioned at the headwaters of the North Platte River, which is fed by snowmelt from our neighboring Snowy Mountain Range and Sierra Madre Range. This Blue Ribbon freestone fishery and its major tributaries offer float and wade fishing opportunities on some of the healthiest trout ecosystems in the world as it flows through a spectrum of stunning Wyoming landscapes.
The Encampment River is one of the most notable tributaries of the North Platte River. It flows for 44.7 miles and originates just south of the Colorado/Wyoming border. Its upper reaches flow through the Sierra Madre National Forest, then enter the Encampment River Wilderness area.
The majority of the river flows through public land throughout its course. The only private water is found on the lower 1/3 of the river. Brush Creek owns two parcels of land along the Encampment, offering over 3 miles of exclusive river access for both wade and float trips. Eventually, the Encampment empties into the North Platte River, in between Riverside and Saratoga, WY. This river is known for its abundant and healthy bug and fish populations, offering some of the larger fish in the valley. The Green Drake hatch is the most notable hatch, and when it appears in late June or early July offers phenomenal dry fly-fishing.
North Platte River
There’s a beauty to the North Platte that can’t be found anywhere else. It courses steadfastly through steep pine tree-covered canyons with dramatic rock formations, and anglers across the nation seeking a world-class fishing experience visit it for it’s incredibly healthy ecosystem.
The word Platte is French for “flat river.” In its upper reaches, the North Platte River is considered a freestone river, meaning it is a free-flowing, ideal fishing environment without the presence of dams. Brush Creek Ranch has exclusive access to over 10 miles of world-class private water on the Upper North Platte. Additionally, our guides fish and use public put-ins and take-outs for floats, making the angling opportunities endless.
Tributary of the Missouri River, the North Platte River merges with the South Platte River to become the “Platte River”, the Platte empties into the Missouri, the Missouri empties into the Mississippi, and then into the Gulf of Mexico. At over 1,050 miles long, the Platte is one of only three rivers in the continental US that flows north/south for over 100 consecutive miles. The river originates about 50 miles south of the Ranch in North Park, Colorado, and flows north to central Wyoming where it starts turning to the East. In North Platte, Nebraska it meets up with the South Platte River and then becomes the Platte River.
Brush Creek is a special tributary of the North Platte River. It starts out in 2 different forks high in the Medicine Bow National Forest, the South Fork and North Fork. Throughout its higher reaches you can find native cutthroat trout, brook trout and even an occasional grayling. Once you reach the Ranch property, the creek has significant size and we see mainly brown trout through our stretch, with occasional brook trout and rainbow trout. A large part of the Ranch’s Stewardship Plan revolves around Brush Creek and restoring it to its historic condition. The Creek offers great wild trout fishing for anglers of all skill levels.
French Creek is an important tributary of the North Platte River that starts high in the Medicine Bow National Forest. Throughout the higher reaches, you can find plentiful populations of Brook Trout and the occasional Cutthroat Trout. Down towards the lower reaches we see primarily Brown and rainbow trout. The last 4 miles of French Creek are located on our very own Sanger Ranch property. From the confluence where it dumps into the “Platte” up to our property boundary you will find high gradient pocket water, deep cuts and bends that are teeming for trout larger than one would expect by the size of the creek. These fish love to eat dry flies and do not see much fishing pressure. French Creek is difficult to wade and tight overhanging brush make an accurate cast a must.
Our seven different ponds ranging in size from 1/2 acre to 20 acres are full of stocked rainbow, brown, brook, cutthroat and tiger trout.