By Karissa Draper (age 11)
(Published Aug., 2002, Utah Outdoors magazine)

cover-aug.jpg (28993 bytes)In early July this year my dad and I went to Flaming Gorge on my first guided fishing trip. I had only seen one sunrise in my life and this was my second time seeing a sunrise and it was a very beautiful morning to be awake. I had to get up at 1 a.m. but had a hard time getting out of bed and didn’t finally get up until 1:50 a.m., because I was so tired. At 2 a.m. we got on the road from Salt Lake City then drove into Wyoming and back into Utah, arriving at Manila, Utah. The guide had hot coco and donuts waiting.

The morning air was still chilly because the sun was not up yet but I was ready to go. They had a little dog named Pee-Wee and he was really cute and Bruce had some wild cats running around at his house that lived under the deck. I was able to hold a baby kitten that was pure black and wild as a tiger, while they got the boat ready. Then we launched the boat from the Sheep Creek Bay at 6 a.m. The boat we went out on was the biggest I have ever been on and had a kitchen, bathroom, and also a bedroom to sleep in. I was really looking forward to getting a fish on my line!

I was spoiled rotten by the guide and his helper with candy, soda pop and great fishing! They treated me like a princess. The guides name was Bruce Parker and his friends name was Kyle Edwards.

I caught a lot of fish! I caught two big kokanee, one lake trout and a big rainbow before my mom would have even gotten out of bed. We also saw a pair of nesting ospreys as we fished and it was really neat to hear them scream in the crisp morning air. They flew around and gave us a great show. It was a trip I will never forget and something I want to do again soon. Having a knowledgeable guide to help us share the experience and beauty of the lake was fun and I learned a lot of new fishing tricks. I am looking forward to taking my mom and brother with next time!

We fished for most of the morning and the fishing was really great. About 10 a.m. the fishing slowed down and they stopped biting and we decided to go. On the way back home I slept for the whole trip! It was well worth the drive and getting up that early and I hope everyone gets the chance to spend a fun day at the “Gorge” like I did with my Dad!