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A DIY Pack Mule Fishing Adventure in the Bob Marshall Wilderness: Cutthroats and Bull Trout on the Flathead River

A DIY Pack Mule Fishing Adventure in the Bob Marshall Wilderness: Cutthroats and Bull Trout on the Flathead River

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from harryz wrote 1 year 30 weeks ago

As a disabled marine I miss these kinds of trips, I read the story three times and lived it in my mind and heart. This is probably the best story or the one that touched me the most in the many, many years of reading Field and Stream. If I can ever afford the operation to fix my back I will, before I pass do a trip like this. Coming from 3 generations of taxidermists and outdoors men I loved this story. Thanks for sharing it. I have been to that place that a slice of pizza and a cold beer seem like heaven. Semper Fi, and thanks again for a fine story and great pictures.

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from Kingston wrote 1 year 26 weeks ago

Great story and pics. This is the most amazing trip I've ever done...1st time in 1985 for my 16th B-day with my Dad and his buddy and 7 times since then! Our 2007 trip was just like the story, the Youngs Canyon was a long day of walking rafts, but the day prior I hiked down and scouted the canyon and the fishing was the best I've ever had!! In 2011 we elected to get dropped just below the canyon (by Duke!) and fish up, but the water was so high we couldn't fish the canyon. But the South Fork fished great! Now my 12 year old son wants to go...I can't wait!

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from shep wrote 1 year 25 weeks ago

How do I contact Duke?

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from Louis Bramblett wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Is there a guide available I am not confident of DIM doing it myself

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from benromans wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

Hey Folks—
Sorry it’s taken me so long to reply to your posts. If you’re interested in a guided trip, or trying to organize a DIY trip like my friend and I did, contact Joe Muretta about packing or any other needs. He’s been running stock in and out of the Bob Marshall since 1971 and knows it better than anyone, and his crew is second to none. His phone number is (406) 564-3357. Hope that helps!

BR

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from benromans wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

. . . Also, FYI, Duke works for Joe Murretta.
I forgot to mention that. Sorry!

BR

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from Sean Hansen wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Your packer's name was Doog not Duke. I know because I worked with him for two years. William "Doog" White. All the other info is correct and he is one of the best packers in montana.

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from William Doog White wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Wow! Finally got out of the woods and thanks to my good friend Sean, just saw this for the first time. This was an awesome trip! I know where these guys put in at, and let me tell you, the first section on youngs creek can be fairly technical. The part that wasn't told was that when I finally got to the trailhead that night, it was around 11:30 pm. While unsaddling these mules I took the brunt of the worst kick that I have ever experienced(and I have had a few). I could hardly get out of bed the next day, but had to pack another trip in so didn't have a choice. If you would like to contact me directly my number is 406-552-3370. Thanks again Ben. Great article!

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from William Doog White wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

P.S. Tell Jay hello..look forward to seeing you fellas again.

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from Tommy Boyle wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Excellent article and photos from a trip of a lifetime. Nice Work Ben! Thanks for the interesting read. I just wanted people to know that if you are planning a trip into the Bob, you are going to need a shuttle for your vehicle from whatever trailhead you start at, to the take out at Meadow Creek. We ran the vehicles for Ben's party for this trip and had their rigs waiting for them when they got packed out. You can reach us at 406-370-5845 or find us on the web at www.fourrivers.webs.com We would love to assist in any trip planning you need. Thanks

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from Tommy Boyle wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Excellent article and photos from a trip of a lifetime. Nice Work Ben! Thanks for the interesting read. I just wanted people to know that if you are planning a trip into the Bob, you are going to need a shuttle for your vehicle from whatever trailhead you start at, to the take out at Meadow Creek. We ran the vehicles for Ben's party for this trip and had their rigs waiting for them when they got packed out. You can reach us at 406-370-5845 or find us on the web at www.fourrivers.webs.com We would love to assist in any trip planning you need. Thanks

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from benromans wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Doog—sorry about butchering your name. Between my poor hearing, and my chicken scratch notes, I dropped the ball. Shouldn’t have rechecked things, and for that I apologize. Sean—Thanks for correcting me.

And to Tommy’s point, everyone I contacted about putting this trip together was first rate. Doog, Marc, Joe and all the cowboys made sure we made it in and out safely, and Tommy and his crew delivered our rig safely and professionally—not an easy task given the distance and terrain covered. Props to everyone. (and sorry again Doog)

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from Zischkale wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

Ben ... great trip for sure. I took a 52 mile solo hiking trip along the South Fork just a couple of weeks before you guys floated it. Loved every minute. Planning a return trip this July, but thinking about hiking from Benchmark up over the divide and down into Danaher Meadows, fishing Danaher Creek. Any idea of it's as good as Youngs?

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from benromans wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

Hey Zischkale—
Glad you enjoyed the story. I’ve never explored the east side of the Bob, where you’re planning to hike, so my information is only secondhand. Fortunately, the reports I’ve heard of fishing on Danaher have been favorable—and I’m hard pressed to think of a stream in that area that didn’t fish well anyway :)

I don’t think Danaher's gradient is as steep as Young’s Creek, but I’ve heard there are fewer logjams and hazards, and plenty of fish. My only advice is if this year’s snowpack is anything like normal, try to steer your trip for the third or fourth week of July. That should give time for runoff to do its thing and make for easy wading.

Good luck on your trek!

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from harryz wrote 1 year 30 weeks ago

As a disabled marine I miss these kinds of trips, I read the story three times and lived it in my mind and heart. This is probably the best story or the one that touched me the most in the many, many years of reading Field and Stream. If I can ever afford the operation to fix my back I will, before I pass do a trip like this. Coming from 3 generations of taxidermists and outdoors men I loved this story. Thanks for sharing it. I have been to that place that a slice of pizza and a cold beer seem like heaven. Semper Fi, and thanks again for a fine story and great pictures.

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from Kingston wrote 1 year 26 weeks ago

Great story and pics. This is the most amazing trip I've ever done...1st time in 1985 for my 16th B-day with my Dad and his buddy and 7 times since then! Our 2007 trip was just like the story, the Youngs Canyon was a long day of walking rafts, but the day prior I hiked down and scouted the canyon and the fishing was the best I've ever had!! In 2011 we elected to get dropped just below the canyon (by Duke!) and fish up, but the water was so high we couldn't fish the canyon. But the South Fork fished great! Now my 12 year old son wants to go...I can't wait!

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from shep wrote 1 year 25 weeks ago

How do I contact Duke?

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from Louis Bramblett wrote 1 year 24 weeks ago

Is there a guide available I am not confident of DIM doing it myself

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from benromans wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

Hey Folks—
Sorry it’s taken me so long to reply to your posts. If you’re interested in a guided trip, or trying to organize a DIY trip like my friend and I did, contact Joe Muretta about packing or any other needs. He’s been running stock in and out of the Bob Marshall since 1971 and knows it better than anyone, and his crew is second to none. His phone number is (406) 564-3357. Hope that helps!

BR

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from benromans wrote 1 year 23 weeks ago

. . . Also, FYI, Duke works for Joe Murretta.
I forgot to mention that. Sorry!

BR

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from Sean Hansen wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Your packer's name was Doog not Duke. I know because I worked with him for two years. William "Doog" White. All the other info is correct and he is one of the best packers in montana.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from William Doog White wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Wow! Finally got out of the woods and thanks to my good friend Sean, just saw this for the first time. This was an awesome trip! I know where these guys put in at, and let me tell you, the first section on youngs creek can be fairly technical. The part that wasn't told was that when I finally got to the trailhead that night, it was around 11:30 pm. While unsaddling these mules I took the brunt of the worst kick that I have ever experienced(and I have had a few). I could hardly get out of bed the next day, but had to pack another trip in so didn't have a choice. If you would like to contact me directly my number is 406-552-3370. Thanks again Ben. Great article!

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from William Doog White wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

P.S. Tell Jay hello..look forward to seeing you fellas again.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tommy Boyle wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Excellent article and photos from a trip of a lifetime. Nice Work Ben! Thanks for the interesting read. I just wanted people to know that if you are planning a trip into the Bob, you are going to need a shuttle for your vehicle from whatever trailhead you start at, to the take out at Meadow Creek. We ran the vehicles for Ben's party for this trip and had their rigs waiting for them when they got packed out. You can reach us at 406-370-5845 or find us on the web at www.fourrivers.webs.com We would love to assist in any trip planning you need. Thanks

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tommy Boyle wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Excellent article and photos from a trip of a lifetime. Nice Work Ben! Thanks for the interesting read. I just wanted people to know that if you are planning a trip into the Bob, you are going to need a shuttle for your vehicle from whatever trailhead you start at, to the take out at Meadow Creek. We ran the vehicles for Ben's party for this trip and had their rigs waiting for them when they got packed out. You can reach us at 406-370-5845 or find us on the web at www.fourrivers.webs.com We would love to assist in any trip planning you need. Thanks

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from benromans wrote 1 year 20 weeks ago

Doog—sorry about butchering your name. Between my poor hearing, and my chicken scratch notes, I dropped the ball. Shouldn’t have rechecked things, and for that I apologize. Sean—Thanks for correcting me.

And to Tommy’s point, everyone I contacted about putting this trip together was first rate. Doog, Marc, Joe and all the cowboys made sure we made it in and out safely, and Tommy and his crew delivered our rig safely and professionally—not an easy task given the distance and terrain covered. Props to everyone. (and sorry again Doog)

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from Zischkale wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

Ben ... great trip for sure. I took a 52 mile solo hiking trip along the South Fork just a couple of weeks before you guys floated it. Loved every minute. Planning a return trip this July, but thinking about hiking from Benchmark up over the divide and down into Danaher Meadows, fishing Danaher Creek. Any idea of it's as good as Youngs?

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from benromans wrote 1 year 12 weeks ago

Hey Zischkale—
Glad you enjoyed the story. I’ve never explored the east side of the Bob, where you’re planning to hike, so my information is only secondhand. Fortunately, the reports I’ve heard of fishing on Danaher have been favorable—and I’m hard pressed to think of a stream in that area that didn’t fish well anyway :)

I don’t think Danaher's gradient is as steep as Young’s Creek, but I’ve heard there are fewer logjams and hazards, and plenty of fish. My only advice is if this year’s snowpack is anything like normal, try to steer your trip for the third or fourth week of July. That should give time for runoff to do its thing and make for easy wading.

Good luck on your trek!

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