Coulson: You can gain a lot from fishing expos, organizations – The Coloradoan
Fishing, for the most part, is an individual sport. There are exceptions where people work as a team to catch fish, but generally, it doesn’t matter how many are fishing together, each is catching their own fish.
Still there are many reasons that anglers fish together. Company, bragging rights, knowledg and sharing are but a few of the reasons to partner up. Often times anglers band together not just to fish, but to promote the sport.
In the Fort Collins/Loveland area there are several organizations, Loveland Fishing Club, Colorado Women’s Flyfishers, Centennial Bass Club, Trout Unlimited Rocky Mountain Flycasters CSU Bass Team and CSU Fishing Club. Of these, I’m a member of the Centennial Bass Club and the Rocky Mountain Flycasters.
Centennial Bass Club’s emphasis is tournament fishing for black bass. While I enjoy competitive fishing, it is not the only reason I joined the group. In addition to tournaments, the club actively supports a youth group and conservation activities in Northern Colorado.
Rocky Mountain Flycasters (RMF), a Trout Unlimited Chapter, embraces TU’s mission, “Trout Unlimited’s mission is to conserve, protect and restore North America’s trout and salmon fisheries and their watersheds.” While their meetings are primarily social and educational, there’s no doubt these anglers put in a goodly amount of time and effort on projects. According to their website, “We are currently involved in educational, community outreach and restoration projects. Our major restoration project is the Eagle’s Nest Open Space. We clean up the Narrows State Wildlife area, sections of the Poudre River, as well as other areas, each year. We also sponsor two scholarships.” Further, while not explicitly stated, they do a lot of work with youth and Project Healing Waters.
In takes money for the RMF chapter to accomplish all the projects they’re involved in and one of their annual fundraisers is the Rocky Mountain Flycasters’ Fly Tying Expo. This event showcases close to two dozen regional tiers, including me, demonstrating their fly tying skills. While trout flies are the most commonly tied flies, a few, including myself, tie patterns for bass, carp, pike and saltwater.
Not a tier? See a pattern that interests you and then ask the tier how to fish it and you’ll likely receive a number of tips on how to fish it, under what conditions, and possibly a few general locations. Plus, if you’re remotely interested in learning to tie flies, there will be a beginner’s table where you can get some hands on experience tying your first fly.
Another reason for attending is the price of admission includes a plate of food provided by Canino’s and a non-alcoholic drink. Plus, you’ll get ten raffle tickets good for a chance at the tiers’ flies and the possibility of a fly rod. Not enough? How about a silent auction for fishing equipment, supplies, artwork and books?
Aside from all I’ve mentioned, the best reason for attending the expo is the attendees, and it’s the primary reason I’d attend if I wasn’t tying. Why, you might be wondering? Many of those in attendance are avid anglers and among them are some of the best fly fishers in our neck of the woods. Attending the expo is an opportunity not only to visit with other good anglers, but to meet and talk fly fishing with area fly fishers.
So consider joining me at the RMF Fly Tying Expo, Wednesday, Feb. 15 at the Fort Collins Senior Center at 1200 Raintree Drive. Looking forward to it, and please drop by my table and say “hello.”
Email Dave Coulson at firstname.lastname@example.org