With winter cold and snow comes a traditional slow-down in Southern Tier fly fishing. Sure, hardy anglers still pursue steelhead and on warming winter days slow motion nymphing can take trout in local rivers, streams and creeks, but for the most part, most fly fishers hang up their rods and waders. What fills the fishing void: fly tying.
Fly tying can be viewed by novice anglers as the territory of the fly fishing elite. And while it can appear both elitist and difficult, there are many fly tyers, clubs, and TU chapters in the area willing to help anglers take the first steps. Following is a summary of some local opportunities for fly tying instruction:
As covered in a previous post, A&G Outfitters will be conducting "Fly Tying 101" at their fly shop in Dickson City, PA. This class is for true beginners and will be held every Thursday night in January and February from 5 - 6 and again from 6 - 7 p.m. The classes will cover the following flies:
- Jan. 10 - Woolly Bugger
- Jan. 17 - Pheasant Tail
- Jan. 24 - Hares Ear
- Jan. 31 - Caddis Pupa
- Feb. 7 - San Juan Worm
- Feb. 14 - Elk Hair Caddis
- Feb. 21 - Adams
- Feb. 28 - Prince
BCD Kids Fly Tying, organized by Kurt Nelson, is a program of beginner fly tying instruction for local kids seeking to get into fly fishing and fly tying. Kurt is a long-time member and supporter of the Al Hazzard Chapter of TU. He is looking for a few volunteers to help with this free fly tying class. The class will be held on two Saturdays: January 5 and February 16, from 12 to 3 p.m., at the Castle Creek United Church on Route 11 in Castle Creek. Contact Kurt at email@example.com or 607-372-6330.
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The Leon Chandler Chapter of Trout Unlimited will hold its 20th Annual Winter Fly Tying Workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. on Saturday evenings, starting January 5 and running until March 2. This event is the work of both the Leon Chandler Chapter of TU and the Tompkins County Cooperative Extension 4-H Program. The program has been a great success in the past and features several different instructors who teach the basics of tying flies in a progressively challenging manner. Enrollment costs are $150 per adult and $120 per child (under 19) or $225 combined. All attendees receive a tying vise, tools, and materials with which to tie all flies. The event is held at the Tompkins County Cooperative Extension Building, 615 Willow Street, in Ithaca. To register, contact Megan Tifft at Winter Fly Tying Workshop, c/o Tompkins County CCE, 615 Willow Avenue, Ithaca, NY 14850. Megan's email is Emailfirstname.lastname@example.org. She can also be reached at 607-272-2292, extension 138.