Fly fishing for women may seem like an oxymoron. Personally, I had no real interest in the sport until I tried it during a ladies only fly fishing clinic. Much to my surprise, it was relaxing and very Zen-like. So why haven’t I ventured back into a mountain stream to listen to the sound of babbling water while casting serenely for trout? Because I don’t own my own equipment, I don’t have any girlfriends who fish and as a novice angler, I don’t yet have the knowledge or confidence to set out on my own.
Many women fly fishers seem to face a similar dilemma. Some may even have their own equipment, yet just don’t know what to do with it. And still others may have always secretly wished for the chance to learn how to fly fish, but don’t know where to start. Well, fear not ladies. This blog was written especially for you. To make fly fishing for women easy, fun and yes, even Zen-like.
Free Casting Lessons from Jans
One of the best ways to get a taste of fly fishing is to begin with the basics – casting a fly line. In the interest of introducing more people to the sport, Jans offers free casting lessons at the Deer Valley Ponds every Monday evening at 5pm from Memorial Day to Labor Day. While this isn’t exclusively a fly fishing for women event, there are plenty of ladies who show up to experience casting for the first time or to perfect their technique. Like most sports, effective casting isn’t conquered by sheer strength. Rather, it is a mixture of grace and efficiency that is best taught by someone to whom casting is second nature. Let the fly fishing experts at Jans help you learn the perfect fly presentation.
Fly Fishing for Women with Trout Unlimited
The local Trout Unlimited (T.U.) chapter in Park City, called High Country Fly Fishers, is a great way to get connected with other female anglers. Board Member, Pat Ronneberg, has made it her personal mission to make fly fishing in Utah more accessible for women. Every month she takes a group of gals fly fishing at rivers or lakes within a short drive from Park City.
This month, the destination is Strawberry Reservoir to experience fly fishing on a mountain lake with sinking lines and casting from a drift boat or pontoon boat. Lake fish are generally larger than river fish so this proves to be an excursion that won’t disappoint. The ladies will also have the option of wet wading in nearby Currant Creek or the Strawberry River. Wet wading, sans waders, is a refreshing way to experience fly fishing in warm water temperatures. The date of this month’s fly fishing for women outing is Saturday, July 13th and space is still available. Contact Pat directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 435-659-1275 for more information.
Fly Fishing for Women Clinics by Jans
A few months ago, I wrote a blog about the Women’s Only Fly Fishing Clinic sponsored by High Country Fly Fishers, the local T.U. chapter in Park City. Together with Jans, High Country Fly Fishers put on a killer three day clinic that included classroom time, casting lessons and one day of river fishing with a guide.
This clinic was so successful that Jans decided to offer two of their own in July. The Jans Women’s Fly Fishing Schools follow the same format as the T.U. clinic, yet are compressed into an evening of instruction followed by a full day of fishing in one of the local rivers. Waders, boots, rods, flies, tackle and even lunch are included in the cost of the clinic, so all you need to do is show up ready to learn and have some fun.
If you have your own equipment, bring that along too. Jans experienced guides and instructors will be happy to show you how to use it. Not only will you catch some fish and learn about the sport of fly fishing, but you’ll meet like-minded women who you can potentially fish with in the future.
At first blush, women and fly fishing may not go hand-in-hand. In fact, during my clinic one of the ladies asked if we would reschedule our day on the river if it was raining. Our male guide simply chuckled, “Well, the fish are already wet.” So we begrudgingly fished in the pouring rain. But he was right, once we got out on the river, it didn’t even matter that it was raining.
That said here’s to hoping that your fly fishing for women adventure is filled with blue skies and warm temperatures. We promise it will be a lot more engaging than simply sitting beside a pool this summer.
Liz Yokubison, Senior Editor