A while back Take Kids Fly Fishing had a great coloring contest going on for kids. Both of my kids were super excited to participate and each sent in a colored picture. 52 kids ended up joining in on the fun. The prizes were anything from a sweet pair of chest waders, different fishing vests, some really nice full set up fly rods, books, Trout Unlimited junior memberships, fly boxes full of flies, just a bunch of really great stuff. The best part about it is that it was geared towards children under 12 years old. My son Oceans name was drawn and he won a sweet fishing vest from J.M. Cremps. It fits him perfectly. My daughter likes to wear it too. It's a little big on her but does the trick.
Here are a few tips when taking a kid fly fishing. These will help the child to want to stay on the creek longer and come back more often. I hope this helps. This is my daughter Sephora who just turned 5 years old in June. Still pretty young but just old enough to get started.
|Make sure they have boots that allow them to get into the water.|
|Let them pick out the fly they want to use. If they are beginner casters you may want to clip off the hook part prior to letting them cast it.|
|Make sure to encourage them and explain the 10 and 2 method of casting. Stand to the side :)|
|Help them with snags. If they insist on getting them out themselves, let them. Careful if they have the hook still.|
|Let them reel in your fish for you. Kids love fish whether it's a chub or a trout.|
|When they decide to build a sandcastle instead of fishing, grab a stick and lend a hand.|
|Let them toss other things in the stream other than flies if they want to. This huge branch would find it's way back into this hole 3 different times. Getting splashed with water each time was a highlight for her.|
|Always wait for the two thumbs up before leaving for the next hole. They will find something exciting at each hole.|
|Always remember they are kids. They may not be as obsessed about the fishing part as much as you and I. But as time goes by they probably will be :)|
|Last but definitely not least, when they say they are ready to go home, it's time to head home!|
Take Kids Fly Fishing is an all around great organization altogether. Being a father of 2(3 soon), I think it is of utmost importance to focus on our youth. T.K.F.F. has a bunch of great information on all things fly fishing for the youngest of kids. Around where I live, it would be impossible to track down a small pair of waders, a vest and a fly rod that actually fits a kid the age of 8 and anything else needed by someone that small. Thanks to T.K.F.F. all this info is right there for you to see. Links to each place and great pics of kids doing what every kid should be doing. FLY FISHING!! They also have great information on fly fishing camps for kids, and different ideas of how to get your kids into fly fishing. I myself am a huge fan of youth fly fishing. I hope to be able to head out fly fishing with my kids until the day I die. What better way to form a bond between you and your precious kids.
So thank you Sarah Lonigro & Kirk Werner over at Take Kids Fly Fishing and everyone else who was involved with this great contest and effort to get those kids fly fishing. Keep up the great work and dedication. This is a great thing for kids, especially in this crazy world where kids are doing drugs and are out of shape before they even hit junior high. So give those kids brains something to feast on, like what's hatching and which weight fly rod they should bring for the next trip. Thanks again and Tight Lines.