Wyoming Cutt Slam

Wyoming Cutt Slam
Snake River cutthroat from Grey's River.

In the 2011 summer, my fishing buddy,Benjy Duke, and I were working as Aquatic Invasive Species Technician’s for Wyoming Game and Fish in Jackson, WY.  While working there we heard about the Wyoming Cutt Slam, which is “designed to encourage anglers to learn more about Wyoming’s cutthroat sub-species.”

For those of you not familiar, cutthroat trout are native trout species found in the Rocky Mountain region, tributaries of the Pacific Ocean and Great Basin in North America.  They are called cutthroat’s because they have a distinct red line under their jaws, and Wyoming is home to four different subspecies of cutthrout trout: Yellowstone cutthroat, Snake River cutthroat, Bonneville cutthroat and Colorado River cutthroat.  In order to obtain the certificate you have to take photo’s of all four species and submit them to Wyoming Game and Fish for approval.

Below are some photos of what turned out to be a memorable couple of weekends in the middle-of-nowhere Wyoming:

Our first stop we Pelham Lake, which was about an hour drive north of Jackson and said to hold Yellowstone cutthroat’s.

Pelham Lake


Yellowstone cutthroat release.

Next, we headed south to the Smith’s Fork to catch the Bonneville cutthroat.  The Smith’s Fork was a relatively small river, at least where we fished, but we managed to get lucky and check the Bonneville off our list.

Smith’s Fork for Bonneville cutty’s.


A monster Bonneville cutty!

We camped that night near the Smith’s Fork and were pleased to have knocked two of the four cutthroat species off our list.  The next day we would fish Labarge Creek for Colorado River cutthroat’s.

Beautiful day on Labarge Creek.


Colorado River cutty.

Finally, we headed to the Grey’s River, which was the nearest river to catch some Snake River cutthroat’s to complete the Wyoming Cutt Slam.

Scenery not too bad on the Grey’s River.


Snake River cutty on the Grey’s.

This was a trip I will never forget and would encourage anyone who has the opportunity to try it!  We spent time in absolutely beautiful country and when we fished the Smith’s Fork and Labarge creek, we literally didn’t see anyone for two days.  I should also mention that all of these fish were caught on public lands and public waters.  As Americans, we are very fortunate to live in a country that allows its people to hunt and fish.  This quote from General Norman Schwarzkopf sums it up:

“What people don’t understand is that this is something that we only have in America. There is no other country in the world where the ordinary citizen can go out and enjoy hunting and fishing. There’s no other nation in the world where that happens. And it’s very much a part of our heritage.”

After catching all four subspecies, you submit them to Wyoming Game and Fish and they mail you a beautiful certificate:

Wyoming Cutt Slam Certificate

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