Fly Fishing Team USA Nationals Bend, OR 2012
For those of you who don't know there is a US Fly Fishing Team! Anglers qualify at events and the goal is to be one of the select few that get sent overseas to compete in a world championship. Crazy, I know. How does it even work? It's just fishing and it's mostly luck correct? Well, not exactly. To a competitive angler luck is a factor, but it really comes down to skill and perfected techniques to catch as many fish as possible in a three hour period. There are river beats typically about 50-100 yards long and lake fishing or “loch style fishing” which is done from boats. The objective, catch as many fish as possible that are a minimum of 8 inches. At this year’s national championship in Bend, OR 46 competitors caught a total of 3,532 fish in 5 venues over 15 hours of fishing. That is equivalent to 99,239 centimeters, 39,070 inches, 3,255 feet or .61 miles of fish measured. The most fish caught in one three hour session, 73! Needless to say competitive angling is about catching lots of fish and having fun doing it!
Bend was a great host city and offered up some incredible angling opportunities. Competitors got to fish on the Deschutes River just south of Bend, the Crooked River, Lava Lake, South Twin Lake, and East Lake. These diverse venues offered up plenty of beautiful wild fish and some stockers as well. What was also so great about these venues is that they were all very different and required a different set of angling skills to produce enough fish to stay at the top of the pack. For those of you who have fished in the Bend area you know how much fun these venues are! And for those who have never fished in the area it truly is wonderful. Get packing!
The top 15 point holders from regional qualifiers and nationals qualified to make the 2013 team. Of those 15, six have been chosen to go overseas to Norway in August of 2013 to take a shot at the world championships. Members of Team USA and especially those on the World Team have refined their skills and made many sacrifices to be called the best in the country. Scientific Anglers has been a huge supporter of Team USA and their gear allows anglers to really refine every detail in their angling. Scientific Anglers line, leaders, and tippet can be found in the bags of competitors from around the country. Thanks SA!
Stay tuned to my future posts to gain insight into the competitive world and get a look at the different techniques that make these anglers so successful. I can guarantee by mixing in some of these techniques combined with the proper S.A. gear, you will have more success the next time you are out on the water!