With winter here and the holiday season nearing completion - lets go back and enjoy a warm summer camp day:
|Lees Falls - Summer Camp 2015|
Tualatin Valley Trout Unlimited - Tualatin Riverkeepers Summer Fish Camp 2015
By Mark Rogers
Tualatin Valley Trout Unlimited (TVTU) and Tualatin Riverkeepers (TRK) joined together to provide fly fishing experience for 20 - ten to thirteen year old day campers from throughout the west metro region. The camp was a week long effort centered in Tigard.
At Dirksen Nature Park in Tigard the kids enjoyed steam-side discussion and in the creek experience learning in stream ecology, chemistry and the water cycle. Activities included temperature, turbidity and getting your socks wet. The campers returned to the creek and collected macro invertebrates, crawdads and sculpin – learning more about a water based web of life.
The future conservationists were also led by TVTU members Jim Fenner and Mark Rogers in an introductory fly fishing class – that also happened to include side bars on the protection of nature, especially fresh water habitats. The learning continued as Jim and Mark shared a small stream fly box with fly comparisons to the actual critters collected in Summer creek and how anglers seek to mimic the trout's natural food. Standard forward and roll casts were practiced with bright orange hook-less woolly buggers. The demonstration ended creek side a description of our home Tualatin River watershed and the importance of cooperation, safety and following the rules when on the water.
|Mike G guides the young flyfishers....|
After a week of daily activities on the Tualatin the final found the day campers, TRK staff and TVTU volunteers - Mike Gentry, Peter Gray and Mark Rogers - walking the gravel road along the upper Tualatin River to Lee Falls. It was blessedly cool, for August, as we split the group half to hike on to the falls and half to fish below the side road bridge. The groups rotated at half time. This little known part of the river runs through a dense riparian buffer of maple, alder, Douglas fir, western red cedar, pacific yew and an occasional poison oak where it remains cool. Young coho and small cutthroat are well fed in the pools and riffles. Applying learned casting techniques, the now quite proficient campers coached several fish to their elk hair caddis and parachute Adams offerings.
|Mark R lends a mend.....|
A wonderful fun group of kids, enthusiastic volunteers and staff, a fine warm summer day on our beautiful namesake Tualatin River can only be reckoned a great success.
|Reading the waters....|
Consider joining us next summer for kids, fun and fishing - a few more hands on the river would be helpful and rewarding!
|Smiles for all!|