Today was time to learn to tie flies! In session #1 we went into the river and collected lots of specimens, so the students had a very good idea of what lives in the river. We started off talking about what trout eat, about sizes and colors of the bugs. We had enough volunteers to almost have a one-on-one ratio of instructors to students. But, as this is an discovery-based program, we did not want grownups to teach the students specific patterns.

Instead, the students were shown how to use the tools, how to insert the hook into the vise, how to get the thread started, and off they went. Most ended up tying a variety of Wooly Bugger type flies, and Zebra Midges, and San Juan worms. Some students looked at the photos we took at the first session and noticed the tails, the wings, etc.

Some very innovative and creative flies were created today — some, but not all, are pictures below. Note the long gold tinsel leading to an egg, with a small hook dangling far off 🙂

The students took vises, tools, and a big baggie of materials home to tie more flies.

Fun session, and I can’t wait for next week — we will go fishing, and all the students will use their own flies! There are never any guarantees, but the flies look good and I expect so do our chances.