It has been a while since I have done a Trout Slam update; here it is:
We have had 15 Trout Slams completed so far in 2022. Fourteen different anglers have completed the Trout Slam this year; one angler has completed it twice this year. Of the fourteen anglers that completed a Trout Slam in 2022, seven of them have completed at least one Trout Slam previously. Four of those “repeats” completed their second Trout Slam (Kurt Seevers, Justin Bignell, Chris Nelson, and Emily Seevers), one completed their third (Cathy Seybold), and two “show-offs” completed their fourth (Scott Johnson and Chris Meston)!
You can see the full list of those who have completed a Trout Slam this year, Trout Slam Finishers. We had one Trout Slam completed by a gentleman from Washington state!
For those of you still working on your Trout Slam, I know your first questions, “Where are they catching their fish?” Here is a breakdown of the top spots fish were caught for these most recent slams: Top three waters for brown trout were East Branch of Verdigre Creek, White River and Middle Fork of Soldier Creek. Top three for brook trout were the Wood Reserve Ponds, Soldier Creek and Monroe Creek. Rainbow trout again were caught from the greatest variety of waters; Chadron State Park Pond, Carter P. Johnson Lake, and East Branch of Verdigre Creek were the top three. Lastly, for the elusive cutthroat trout, the Wood Reserve Ponds, Grove Wildlife Area Pond, and Carter P. Johnson Lake were the top three.
Let me crawl up on the catch & release “soap box”, again. Cutthroat trout are the least abundant, most challenging fish to catch to complete the Trout Slam. Yes, our Nebraska State Fish Hatcheries produce and stock those fish. However, cutthroats are much “wilder” than the more domesticated rainbows. Cutthroats are not as easy to raise in a hatchery. For that reason, we have not and will not be stocking as many cutthroats as frequently as we do rainbows. There are a handful of fisheries that have produced the majority of cutthroats for trout slams. Thank goodness most of those fish have been caught and released! So far, 83% of all trout entered for a Trout Slam have been released; 86% of all cutthroats caught have been released.
Lastly, of course I have to show some pictures. Here are some of the best:
Matthew grew a beard and found a new hat while pursuing his trout slam. I really like Matthew’s brown trout photo!
Trout are cold-water fish. You can see Cathy got after hers last fall and this spring when the weather was still a little cool!
Yes, I am jealous of those who have been able to complete multiple trout slams. I made a quick stop and fished a couple of good holes this summer to try to start my second slam. Got a nice brown to come up and take a look at my presentation, but then it turned away, and I could not get it to go again. I will be back.
Congratulations to these fourteen anglers on their Trout Slams! Your certificates and hat pins should be coming in the mail. For the rest of us, we will just have to keep trying. If you are unfamiliar with the Trout Slam, check it out. You can do it too!