Free, all-day fly fishing expo at DoubleTree
The 16th annual Western Colorado Fly Fishing Expo is set for April 12 at the Doub-leTree Hotel, and there is a place for you.
The free, all-day expo takes place 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is presented by the Grand Valley Anglers Chapter of Trout Unlimited and the Federation of Fly Fishers.
Just like the Trout Unlimited chapter, the expo is only as successful as volunteers make it.
“Oh, there’s definitely a need for more volunteers,” said expo co-coordinator Steve McCall, interrupted while practicing his casting Thursday at Connected Lakes State Park. “We can use people to help with many of the expo’s activities, from the youth fly tying and the casting lessons to helping with the raffle and handling tickets.”
Approximately 40 fly tiers, from Colorado, Oregon, Utah and elsewhere, will be tying in two shifts during the expo, offering tips, tricks and even some flies to expo visitors.
“This part of the expo always is popular,” said expo co-coordinator Tilda Evans. “It’s a great opportunity to meet the tiers and learn a lot about fly tying.”
Evans said the expo also will feature the Colorado Parks and Wildlife live fish tank and a presentation by the Math Science Center at Emerson School on that school’s Fish in the Classroom project.
Casting lessons, tying lessons and a day full of seminars also are on the schedule.
This year’s featured banquet speaker is Chris Hunt, national communications director from Trout Unlimited. He also is a noted author, with the books “Shin Deep: A Fly Fisher’s Love for Living Water” and “Eat More Brook Trout” among his literary credits.
Hunt is a graduate of Western State College (now Western State Colorado University), and the waters of western Colorado are among his favorites.
Tickets for the banquet (the only pay event at the expo) are $35, and reservations are due by April 4.
Tours (also free) will be available April 11 from Scott Rods and Ross Reels in Montrose and Whiting Farms in Delta, where most of the world’s top fly-tying hackle is raised.
In addition to volunteers, donations are being sought for the raffles, auction and youth prizes.