How did Trout ever find and fall in love with Montana you may ask?? Way back in 1981 or 1982, my brother Gordon called me and invited me to go elk hunting in Montana! He had been buying cattle through a rancher-broker in Drummond who invited him to come out!! Above is his cattle lot where he ships many 1000's of feeder cattle each fall to feed lots all over the country!
This is Garry Mentzer, the owner operator of the lot. Along with his sons, Gerry and Greg, they are about the hardest working ranchers in the Flint Creek Valley, home of the "World's Biggest Bullshippers!" They were great hosts and invited me to come out some summer to try fishing! Well as luck would have it, I was in Tacoma, WA the next summer so I called Garry and he made plans to pick me up at the MSO airport and back to his ranch. He supplied me with a trusty ranch pickup and son Greg to guide me!! It was a great time and one to be repeated many times over the years to fish and hunt with them. I hope I have not worn out my welcome with many stops over the years to bunk up with them. I feel about as contented and full of spirit as I can get while out there with new adventures every day in search of the wily trout!
My heart felt thanks to the Mentzer family and I wish you the very best!!
Garry had some 60 acres on a trout stream that Greg showed me! Below it was a beautiful valley where the stream ran clear and full of cutthroat trout. Its owner, Grace, was a very interesting lady in her 70's. She loved the mountains and used to leave her husband in control of the family as she took a couple of horses and headed into the mountains in search of trophy elk. She taught many men how to elk hunt and her husband shot a bull elk that is in the TOP 10 trophy bulls ever shot!
Every time I was in the area, I would fish her wonderful stream until she died. I had heard her family would tie up the stream for their own use so I left it alone for a few years until I got up the gumption to stop and ask if I could fish. Well I got a good look over by her son, Harold, who gave me the OK after promising "catch and release" fishing. I gave him a couple of beers to keep cool while I fished as a peace offering!
Well, upon my return to his home, I noticed he had set up 2 chairs in the yard for the two of us! Over those beers, we learned a lot about each other and solved the world's problem. By the time the beers were done, I had an open invitation to come back and fish anytime!! I have done so many many times and Susan and I have enjoyed Harold and Alvina's company each summer for evenings out!
These are just two of many great acquaintances I have made in Montana. I have felt most welcome by all but two landowners, to enjoy their resources! My thanks to you all and God Bless!