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STREAM HAS TROUT APLENTY

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Brown and rainbow trout inhabit the beautiful but little visited stream in abundance. And access is easy.

That's the stream called Clear Creek, located about 25 miles southwest of Richfield, according to officials of the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. It mostly ran through private lands before I-70 was built through the canyon, limiting access to the water.But much of it now is located within the boundaries of the Fremont Indian State Park and is within a few feet of the park's main road.

Federal funds generated from sportsmen's dollars made Clear Creek a success for anglers, with much of the costs paid for by the anglers, said Dale Hepworth, aquatics manager for the Southern Region of the Division of Wildlife Resources.

But people who fish aren't the only ones who can now enjoy the beauty and tranquility of the stream and Clear Creek Canyon.

Picnic tables are located along shady areas of the creek and near the park road.

The Castle Rock Campground is only a short distance away, as is the state park visitor center.

"Before the construction, quite a bit of the stream was on private land," Hepworth said. "Now the entire canyon is open with most of the stream in Fremont Indian State Park."

He noted that when I-70 was designed to run through the central part of Utah, Clear Creek meandered along part of the proposed roadway. It was a small, little-used stream.

Engineers discussed covering most of Clear Creek with box culverts, straightening other sections and otherwise making the stream difficult to fish. But through mitigation funds, Clear Creek has become a great trout stream, albeit with little use.

"A lot of work was done to improve the stream habitat by adding structures," Hepworth said. "The (Utah) highway department designed the road to have little impact on the stream, and the division (Wildlife Resources) added improvements in stream structures to help the habitat for fish."