Sometime this summer, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department will receive an application from the 1000th person to qualify for the Wyoming Cutt-Slam. In recognition of that milestone, renowned fly fishing equipment manufacturer Orvis Co. has donated a complete fly rod, reel and line combo to the person who achieves that accomplishment. In addition, the Game and Fish will provide the recipient with a Cutt-Slam shirt and patch.
To complete the Cutt-Slam, anglers need to catch Wyoming’s four subspecies of cutthroat in their native range in Wyoming. The four subspecies are the Yellowstone, Snake River, Bonneville and Colorado River cutthroat trout. All who achieve this accomplishment receive a certificate listing the name of the angler, color artwork of the four subspecies and notation on the date and location of each catch.
Now in its 17th year the Cutt-Slam program has been featured in fly fishing magazines, on several television programs,and in a number of angler oriented newsletters throughout the country.
To date more than 950 anglers have been awarded their Cutt-Slam certificate. The program continues to grow in popularity and in recent years the Game and Fish has received between 70-100 applications annually. Most entries are received in late summer and fall following the spring runoff as anglers take advantage of improved fishing conditions. With the moderate snowpack this year, it is likely many cutthroat waters will be in good fishing condition by late June and early July.
The Cutt-Slam was the idea of the late Pinedale area fisheries supervisor Ron Remmick who wanted to draw attention to the management efforts being done on behalf of the cutthroat. He looked at Wyoming’s four cutthroat subspecies and the Cutt-Slam was born.
One of the key components of the Cutt-Slam is that each of the fish must be caught in their native range in Wyoming. Over the years, several of the cutthroat subspecies have been stocked in waters outside of their native drainages. Cutthroat caught in these waters do not meet the Cutt-Slam’s native range requirement. A map showing the native range of the different drainages where the four subspecies can be found is on the Game and Fish website wgfd.wyo.gov. Click on Fishing then on the Cutt-Slam program. In addition to the map, a Cutt-Slam application is provided. Also listed are phone numbers of regional Game and Fish offices where anglers can contact biologists responsible for fisheries management in each drainage.
Anglers completing the Slam have hailed from most states and several foreign countries. To qualify, an angler needs to provide a photograph of each fish and information on the date of catch and water where it was caught. There is no minimum size requirement. Releasing of fish is encouraged and may be required depending on the regulations for different waters.
Logo courtesy Wyoming Game and Fish Department