Yellowstone Custom Trip Update 4

Hello All,

The Yellowstone Custom Adventure just finished up an exciting final backcountry! The last time you heard from us we had just set up camp in the front country and were getting ready to relax and prep for our final trip into Slough Creek. That night we got some much needed sleep after a long day of hiking. 

We got up the next morning and made a game plan for the day. The kids were low on fly tackle so we decided to drive into West Yellowstone and hit a fly shop before fishing our way back to camp along the Madison River. We had a successful fly shop run where we picked up tackle refills and some special mouse patterns for Slough Creek. On our way back, we hit a few spots on the Madison river, but ran into some high water temps which slowed the fishing down. A few kids caught some decent fish before heading back to camp for dinner and backcountry prep that night. 

The next morning we woke up early and loaded up the van. After a beautiful drive to the trailhead with a number of wildlife sightings along the way, we arrived at the Slough Creek trailhead. All the kids hiked well up the steep incline and we reached the first meadow quickly. The sun was high and hot, but the kids all kept up a good pace into the campsite. After we had lunch at the campsite, the kids set about fishing and had tons of luck right off the bat. Most of the fish were on the smaller side though. We met after a few hours and decided to have an early dinner so we could make the most of the evening bite. Our decision paid off: the big fish came out to play that evening and most kids landed nice cutthroat trout in the 16-20 inch range, with a few of them on mouse flies! We went to sleep under the Milky Way that night and slept well after a long day of fishing and hiking. 

The following morning we rigged up our rods and packed lunch. We decided to hike upstream a few miles in search of some more big fish. The water was crystal clear and were able to see a ton of big cutthroat trout. Because of the low and clear conditions, the kids struggled to entice the fish. Right when we decided to break for lunch some thunderstorms rolled in and we headed back to camp. We decided to nap out the storm, and when we woke up the skies had cleared and we were ready to fish again. We headed out for the evening bite and this time decided to work downstream. Our decision paid off again - the fishing was fantastic. Everyone landed a trophy cutthroat trout, a number of which were on big mice and streamers!

This morning we hiked out early and made the trek back to base camp. After some much needed showers, we set up camp and got our fishing gear prepped for float fishing tomorrow! We are getting very excited for our final day of float fishing on the Upper Madison. Parents will hear from us tomorrow to talk about pickup details and answer any more questions. We have had an incredible trip this year and are excited to finish off the trip strong! 


Until next time,


The guides and the guys

Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions was started in 2010 as a graduate thesis for my Master's Degree in Environmental Conservation Education at NYU. The operating premise was simple - by coupling amazing wilderness fly fishing camps for teens with environmental education and service learning we can help inspire future generations of fly fishing conservationists. We have been growing our unique list of trips and experiences ever since.

When it comes to choosing a summer program for your teen the options are endless. For the teen who loves to fish, be outside, and has a strong sense of adventure we have made the choice easy. We are the leader in teen fly fishing adventures and are dedicated to providing the best backcountry fly fishing experience with opportunities for teens to engage in leadership training, community service, and backcountry camping.


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Will Lillard, Founder/Director/Guide

Contact Us

[email protected]

Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions
2540 King Road
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768

(828) 577-8204