Characteristics of the New Fork River
The New Fork River has peaceful and intimate character as it makes its way through grassy meadows, ranch lands, and below sagebrush benches and looming bluffs. Large stands of cottonwood and willow offer shade and attract wildlife. Convenient public boat accesses make this river a heavenly float.
The New Fork River originates at New Fork Lakes, in the arms of the Wind River Mountains, 24 miles north of Pinedale, Wyoming. As the New Fork River veers southeast, it gathers up the smaller streams that flow down from Wind River drainages: Willow Creek, Pine Creek, Pole Creek, Boulder Creek, and the East Fork River. The New Fork carves a boundary around the northeast and southeast edges of the Mesa before joining the Green River just below State Highway 351, fortifying the Green for its rendezvous with the Colorado and finally the Gulf of California.
Fishing the New Fork River
Fishermen are rewarded with brook trout, brown trout, rainbow and whitefish. Local commercial guides are also available for float and fishing trips on the New Fork. They are well acquainted with the regulations and the best times and places to be on the. Fishing the New Fork is a worthy challenge for both the beginner and more advanced fisherman.
Public Access Boat Launches
After it leaves the Bridger-Teton National Forest near New Fork Lakes, the New Fork River passes largely through private land, and is not big enough to float on until it gets close to Pinedale. At that point, public access boat launches provided by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department offer several opportunities for boaters to spend a day floating down different sections of the river. Boaters may park a vehicle and boat trailer or otherwise arrange for pickup at the desired take-out point, then launch from a designated put-in upriver.
Access Considerations – Rivers Through Private Land
In Wyoming, fishermen and other river recreationists on waters passing through private land must remain in their vessels. There is no bank fishing or wading allowed unless permission has been granted by the landowner. On the New Fork River, fences to control livestock rarely cross the river in the summer and early fall, but be alert for bridges, cables, fallen trees, and any objects crossing the water. Consult a good map and know where you are.
It is the responsibility of the recreationists to recognize and respect private property.
- On public land, anyone may wade, float, or fish from the river's bank, although this is not always safe and some locations may not be appropriate for such activities.
- Consult Wyoming Game and Fish maps for details on public land sections and easements along the river.
- Most of the New Fork River's course is a long way from emergency services: use caution and wear a life vest.
- Be sure to bring extra clothing, food, water, safety and fishing gear, hat, sunblock and insect repellent. There are few opportunities to buy supplies near public river accesses on the New Fork.