Lamar River

The Lamar River
The Lamar River

The Lamar River is the largest tributary of Yellowstone River within Yellowstone National Park. We are fortunate not to have to use the full moniker, Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar, of the Secretary of the Interior for whom the river is named. It originates in the high peaks, steep ridges, U-shaped valleys of the Absaroka-Beartooth Mountains and it is approximately 40 miles long. Large herds of Bison and Elk lazily graze along the river in the Lamar Valley. Wolves can even occasionally be spotted if you are an early riser or get lucky in the evening and it is one of the best places in Yellowstone to spot Grizzlies.

The Upper Lamar River is another tremendous cutthroat fishery. The main river along with tributaries such as Cache, Miller and Cold creeks fish very well with dry flies for 12"-18" cutthroats. As with all of backcountry trips the wildlife, wildflowers and scenery are tremendous. wolves, grizzly bears, elk, bison, deer and moose are among some of the wildlife you may encounter in this area of the park.

The Lamar River receives a lot of fishing pressure, due to both its spectacular scenery and quality fishing and because the river is easily accessible by road. Generally, the Lamar ranges from between 25-200 yards away from the road, allowing for easy access, and hiking down to the river is easy.

Lamar River snakes through Yellowstone Park's Lamar Valley
Lamar River snakes through Yellowstone Park's Lamar Valley

History

Prior to the 1884-85 Geological Survey of the park, the Lamar was known as the East Fork of the Yellowstone River. During that survey, Geologist Arnold Hague named the river for L.Q.C. (Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus) Lamar, then Secretary of the Interior.

In 1869, the Cook-Folsom-Peterson Expedition encountered the Lamar River (East Fork) just upstream from the canyon section flowing into the Yellowstone and traveled upstream to the confluence of Calfee Creek where they camped on September 16, 1869.

Bison graze along the prodigious meadows that keep the Lamar Valley fat and happy.

Osborne Russell in his 1921 Journal of a Trapper described the Lamar as follows: Chapter-VI-In the Yellowstone Country-A Garden of Eden Inhabited By a Small Party of Snake Indians - On the 28th [July 1834] we crossed the mountain in a westerly direction through the thick pines and fallen timber, about twelve miles, and encamped in a small prairie about a mile in circumference. Through this valley ran a small stream in a northerly direction, which all agreed in believing to be a branch of the Yellowstone. 29th-We descended the stream about fifteen miles through the dense forest and at length came to a beautiful valley about eight miles long and three or four wide, surrounded by dark and lofty mountains. The stream, after running through the center in a northwesterly direction, rushed down a tremendous canyon of basaltic rock apparently just wide enough to admit its waters. The banks of the stream in the valley were low and skirted in many places with beautiful cottonwood groves. Here we found a few Snake Indians comprising six men, seven women and eight or ten children, who were the only inhabitants of the lonely and secluded spot.

Black wolf of the Agate Pack that roams the Lamar Valley in the winter and Spring.
Lamar River Hatch Chart

Insects

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Lamar River Fly Patterns

Mayflies
                         
Blue Winged Olive (BWO)     •  •
          •
  • Dry Flies: BWO's, Parachute BWO's, Parachute Adams,
Nymphs & Emergers:
Pheasant Tails, Hares Ears, BWO Emergers. Beadhead Nymphs
Pale Morning Dun             •   •
  •       Dry Flies: PMD's, Parachute PMD's, Light Cahill. Pink Cahil, Pink Sparkle Dun, Parachute Adams,  Adams,
Nymphs & Emergers: Pheasant Tails, Hares Ears, PMD Emergers, Qwiggly Cripple. Beadhead Nymphs
Green Drakes          
            Dry Flies: Paradrakes
Nymphs & Emergers:  Prince Nymphs, Beadhead Nymphs  
Caddis
                         
Caddis             •
  •   •       Dry Flies: Elk Hair Caddis, X Caddis, Stimulators,
Nymphs & Emergers
: Peeking Caddis, Buckskin Caddis, Beadhead Nymphs
                           
Yellow Sallies             •    •   •       Dry Flies: Yellow Stimulators, Henry's Fork Yellow Sallies, Yellow Elk Hair Caddis.  Nymphs & Emergers: Prince Nymphs, Beadhead Nymphs
Golden Stoneflies             •
          Dry Flies: Yellow Stimulators, Irresistible Stimulators. Chernobyl Ants, Royal Coachmans, Madam X's, 
Nymphs & Emergers
Prince Nymphs, Stonefly Nymphs, Halfback Nymphs,
Salmonflies             •   •           Dry Flies: Sofa Pillows, Orange Stimulators. 
Nymphs & Emergers: Black Rubberlegs, Stonefly Rubberlegs, Bitch Creek Nymph.
Terrestrials
                         
Ants           •  •  •   •  •   •     Black Fur Ant, CDC Ant, Foam Ant, Flying Ant
Grasshoppers               •   •   •   •     Dave's Hopper, ParaHopper, Foam Hopper, Madam X's, 
Beetles & Crickets             •   •   •   •   •     Deer Hair Beetle, Foam Beetle, Dave's Cricket, Henry's Fork Cricket
Others
                         
Midges     •   •   •   •   •
  •   •   •   •   • Dry Flies: Griffith's Gnat, Double Midge, Fuzzballs. 
Nymphs & Emergers: Brassie, Midge Emerger,  Disco Midge, Serendipity, Tungsten Beadhead Larva

Insects

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec

Lamar River Fly Patterns

 

 

Custom Search
Bookmark and Share

This Page

jumping trout