We attended the Heber Valley Fly Fishing Festival in Midway, UT. This is a great event, where some of the most talented fly fishermen in Utah come to share of their knowledge. It’s a very family-friendly event, with many activities for the kiddos, as well as for the parents.
The Heber Valley Fly Fishing Festival happens on a Friday and a Saturday in August. We planned to attend both days. They have great classes on both days, but on Saturday, there is a fly fishing competition for the kiddos. So, our plan was to go on Friday, learn everything that we could about fly fishing, and then compete on Saturday.
The biggest problem was that no one in our family has ever fly fished, so we had a LOT to learn. But we definitely received some expert level instruction.
Our kiddos received their first lesson in casting from Rocky Mountain Outfitters. Their guide was very calm, patient, and worked with my kiddos who had no experience and had them casting fairly well.
My wife met up with the Wasatch Women’s Fly Fishing Club. They showed her all of the basics of fly fishing. They taught her the parts of the pole. They taught her all of the knots. Then, she received one-on-one instruction on casting her fly rod. They actually took her out on the water and she received one-on-one instruction from a professional guide casting on the water.
My first lesson came from 801 Fly Fishing. The guide that worked with me also showed me one-on-one how to cast, how to strip, and how to fish with streamers. He was an excellent helper, and also really good with kids.
We all learned how to tie flies with Sundance Resort. The guide was very patient, and helped us make some flies that we are very proud of, and hopefully will catch us some fish. Sundance Resort also had fun fly fishing games with some great prizes. We were definitely out of our league, but they were still great to practice our skills with.
The highlight of the day was when my kiddos got the opportunity to learn how to cast with Twin Territory. Twin Territory are two twin boys who have a goal to get kiddos off of the couch and into the wilderness. They are expert fly fishermen, and their enthusiasm is contagious to all who get near them. They worked with my kiddos and taught them exactly how to cast a fly rod. Their instructions were simple, easy to follow, and great for the kiddos.
On Saturday, we signed up for the fly fishing competition. We headed out to the Provo river, and had my kiddos fly fish. Our inexperience was showing, and we didn’t catch any fish, but the kids still had a fabulous time.
Because the Heber Valley Fly Fishing Festival was held at a park, the park amenities were available. My kiddos enjoyed passing the time playing on the playground equipment and running through the park.
At the conclusion of the competition, they gave out prizes to the kiddos who caught the largest fish, caught the most fish, etc…. Now, even though we didn’t catch any fish, my kiddos still were the recipients of quite a few prizes. They won prizes for things like ‘seeing a fish’. It really made my kiddos’ day!
So, find a calendar right now. Find August on it. Pencil in Heber Valley Fly Fishing Festival. It will be a weekend in August, although I’m not sure which one it will be in 2016. So, pencil it in for every weekend so that you can make sure you make it. Bring your kids! Learn how to fly fish! It doesn’t matter if you’ve never touched a fly fishing rod, they will teach you. What a great family experience.