Tim Jacobs and I fished together on the Fryingpan River this week, and he is involved in a really neat camp for kids in Michigan.
In Tim’s words….”I have been very committed to Michigan Youth Trout Camp for the last 14 years. I was first invited to the camp to teach the casting portion of the instruction. At the time, I was a casting instructor with the Sage Casting Schools here in Colorado. A long time fly fishing friend of mine, who was a member of the Kalamazoo Chapter of Trout Unlimited, invited me to come to the camp and teach the casting on Sunday, which is always the first day of camp.
By about the 3rd year I was staying for the whole week. I think this work is as important if not more so than all the conversation projects that TU [Trout Unlimited] and FFF [Federation of Fly Fishers] is involved in doing. Bringing the next generation of anglers and conservationists along is something that is vitally important if we want our fisheries to endure and be cared for in the future.
I also think that kids today don’t have quite the same access to the outdoors as I did growing up. Our camp gives them that introduction and I know they enjoy it. We do surveys at the end of every camp and it’s not unusual for campers to tell us that is was one of the most enjoyable camps they have attended. Having spent my career as a middle school teacher, the camp is a great fit for me. It’s always one of the highlights of my summer.”