“Cascade Corner” is a lightly-traveled, backcountry destination in the extreme southwestern corner of Yellowstone National Park. Access to this splinter of solitude in one of the nation’s most heavily visited national parks is via Ashton, ID. From Ashton, take Highway 47 (National Forest Road #62) east of Highway 20. About 5.5 miles from Ashton, turn right on Cave Falls Road and proceed about 20 miles to the Bechler Ranger Station.
For anglers, the primary draw to Cascade Corner is the Bechler River. Home to rainbow trout sometimes exceeding 20 inches and husky rainbow-cutthroat hybrids, taming a big Bechler ‘bow in the wild backcountry is a titillating prospect for any devoted trout lover. Problem is, the touted trout of the Bechler River are often maddeningly selective. Considering it’s around a six mile hike to the favored stretch of water on the river, it’s not too much fun to invest that much effort in a fishless day, though the stunning scenery adequately offsets a tough day on the river.
Overshadowed by the Bechler River, Boundary Creek offers more consistent angling success for visitors to Cascade Corner. Originating on the Pitchstone Plateau, Boundary Creek plunges over Dunanda Falls before meandering into the Bechler Meadows where it eventually joins the Bechler River. From the Bechler Ranger Station, it’s a flat, easy hike of five miles to Boundary Creek.
From its confluence with the Bechler River upstream through the meadows, Boundary Creek offers excellent fishing for rainbow trout, most ranging from 8 to 12 inches. Some of the fish betray evidence of hybridization with cutthroats, other appear as pure-strain rainbows. Willows line the winding stream, but sandbars and open stretches in the grassy meadows yield plenty of places to cast a fly. Boundary Creek is an ideal destination for tempting trout with dry flies. Novice anglers will find good success with these less than fussy fish. Most days, any fly that drops within reasonable distance of a pod of Boundary Creek trout and achieves a modicum of drag-free drift will be hammered by one of the stream’s finned residents.
Basic dry fly patterns work very well on Boundary Creek. Elk Hair Caddis in varying shades will do the trick, or opt for a Parachute Adams or small hopper. Cascade Corner sees more than its fair share of mosquitoes and receives the most precipitation of any location in Yellowstone National Park. Late August and early September are thus prime times to target Boundary Creek. During this period the trails are drier and there are far fewer biting bugs than earlier in the summer.