Rhyan and Atlas at the Cold Creek Pond.

About nine months ago I posted a story about taking my grandson Atlas to fish the Cold Creek pond. My son and his family will be relocating out of state, and Atlas and his sister Rhyan were asking to go fishing with “Pops” again before they move. This was to be Rhyan’s first fishing adventure.

On that June 2023 visit we were very fortunate to share the pond with a cow and a young bull elk. It was a remarkable, once-in-a lifetime experience. On this trip we were fortunate to see a small herd of wild horses, about seven to ten (I failed to diligently count them, but I’d say close to ten). Their presence always gives me a warm feeling, knowing that the horses and many other wild animals thrive in this secluded northwest section of the Spring Mountain Range.

I hope you enjoy the photos/videos from today’s adventure, especially you angling grandparents who frequent this blog.

Grandkids discussing their fly selection…
Atlas sporting my home-made fly bib while waiting for me to fix up his Bass Pro Shop starter pole. Sometime in the early 1980s I designed and sewed this bib. I modeled it after a bib that my brother Neal used back in the 1960s through 1980s. I think Neal might have inherited that bib from our dad Ray, Atlas’s great grandfather. It was much more compact than a traditional fishing vest. I appreciate simple and compact accessories, which is why I like to use the Simms fanny pack.

My granddaughter Rhyan was happy to try her hand at fishing for the first time.
Three anglers happy to be at Cold Creek on this late winter morning.
Just like his first try fishing Cold Creek in June 2023, my grandson Atlas caught the first fish of the day. I loved hearing Rhyan congratulating Atlas on his catch.
Atlas was very proud to keep his “first-fish-of-the-day” streak alive.
Rhyan turned five years this past fall, so this whole fishing process was a lot for her to coordinate. I promised her I would let her reel in my trout, if I hooked one. She was reluctant at first, but when I guided her she understood what to do. This Rainbow trout pulled hard for his size and leaped right in front of us. It’s hard to tell who was hooked the most, the trout or little Rhyan (I think you will understand my inference).
Having the opportunity to pass on my love of the outdoors, especially fishing, to my grandchildren is quite a blessing.
I believe this wild horse is a Tobiano pinto horse (perhaps my friend Andy can verify or correct me). It is one of two Tobiano painted horses I have photographed over the years at Cold Creek. I first photographed this mare in February 2010. I believe my friend Karen has also taken photos of this horse; she will be pleased to see it is still doing well.

Using my Jetboil Flash cooking stove to heat some water for the post-fishing hot chocolate celebration, which Rhyan anxiously awaits.
Two tired but happy little anglers, rewarding their efforts with some hot chocolate.
On our way out this wild horse was taking a rest while the rest of the herd was off in the distance to the right of the three shown in this photo. Hopefully I learned from Andy that this horse’s color is called a Bay, perhaps a Dark Bay.

My thanks to my son Tom for taking all the photos and videos, and especially for the opportunity to share my love with the grandkids.

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

Psalms 127:3-5 (ESV)

Author: FisherDad

I am a Christian who has been married to my wife for over four decades, with six children and four grandchildren so far. I have retired from a string of successful occupations as a certified public accountant, a chief financial officer, and a registered municipal advisor. I have been a fly angler for almost five decades. My one and only article submission was published by Southwest Fly Fishing magazine (now American Fly Fishing). You can learn more about me by clicking on “About” on the top of my blog page.

8 thoughts on “Grandkids”

  1. You are correct-toe-mundo on the “tobiano”….. colors on top of a white background. “Overo” paint horses are white on top of dark background & any white on legs must be below the knee .❤️
    The ‘bay’ color always has a black mane & tail with a brown/chestnut colored body. Otherwise, if the mane/tail/body are ALL chestnut/brown..:the horse is called a ‘chestnut’. 😬

    Fun article and we know these grandkids will be missed…..

  2. Hey brother Mark, I say to people all the time only God comes before family. As much as I love golf if it’s a choice between golf and attending track, soccer, flag football or basketball of the grannies, I always take the latter. Our families are a gift from God and we must honor that blessing by being present as they grow into adulthood. May God continue to bless you and yours…🙏🏾❤️🙏🏾👍🏾

  3. hello there !! i wanted to ask some questions about pine valley utah, i looked on your website and it seems you’ve gone before, me and a few friends want to head up there for spring break i was wondering if you could give some advice. everytime i call them i get sent to voicemail and i figured who better to ask than someone who has been there before. i’d love to get in touch to ask and see what’s up. we can talk through email or twitter my handle is @_Memeachu_ thank you for your time god bless !!!

    1. Nessy, the Pine Valley Recreation Area is generally open for camping and fishing from May through September, but campsite reservations are highly recommended as the few unreserved sites go quickly on their “first-come-first-served” policy. Use this website to learn more and to make campsite reservations:

      You can fish the public section of the Santa Clara River (a creek really), or hike into the reservoir, when the campsites are closed in the off season. The hike from the guard shack gate to the reservoir is a little less than one mile.

      Read Utah’s Pine Valley Reservoir/Santa Clara River fishing regulations here:

      Best of luck; Pine Valley is a very scenic area to fish.

  4. What a memory making day this was for all! The videos of the kids “reeling them in” with Grampa Mark are fun to watch. Kudos to Tom as the official videographer of the day. The horses are the cherry on top! Thank you for letting us see these memories in the making.


    1. Thank you Jim. These excursions into nature were likely more fun for me than for them, but having these recorded memories to relive when they are older will spark the dormant details of their youth. It’s hard to describe it other than a blessing from our Lord.

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