Recap on The 5th Annual Fly Fishing Camp

The 5th Annual Fly Fishing Camp at Elk Lake Lodge

Five years ago, I approached the owner of The Mountaineer with a proposal to host a Fly Fishing Camp at Elk Lake Lodge.  Not really a “School”, but more of a camp and experience focused around Fly Fishing for Brook Trout.  The camp would address all ability levels and offer professional teaching and guiding in an amazing mountain and river environment.  Well, I can’t believe it’s been 5 years, but our camp keeps running strong and our guests continue to learn.


Some “Thank You’s”:

We wouldn’t be able to host this camp without the great staff at Elk Lake Lodge, constantly hustling to make sure everyone is comfortable, well fed and happy.  Thanks to Mike and Dianne and the entire Elk Lake Staff.  Also, a thanks to the owners of Elk Lake Lodge, John and Margot Ernst, for believing in the idea of the camp and allowing us to host this event at their amazing retreat.

Thanks to our Guides…Ken Kalil, Sean Platt and Jonah Kaz.  I really couldn’t pull off the camp without their efforts leading up to camp and all weekend at Elk Lake. Their ease of character, professionalism and abilities insure that every guest learns at a comfortable pace.  

Our Sponsors: 
Patagonia, Howler Brothers, Stanley, ECHO and Airflo.

Patagonia provides our guests with Waders and Boots to use during the weekend of Fly Fishing Camp.  They also provide “beginners” with a copy of “Simple Fly Fishing”, a book that the camp is loosely based on. As well as the above, Patagonia also helps us support local conservation groups, like The Nature Conservancy and The Ausable River Association, both dedicated to protecting our wild places and fisheries. Thanks to Mark, Stefan and Phil!

Howler Brothers provides our Guides with shirts and guests with comfortable hats for the weekend.  Howler Brothers is an Austin based company focused on the enjoyment of fly fishing, paddling and surfing in our fresh and saltwater systems worldwide…and providing comfortable, functional clothing to enjoy your time in these places. Thanks to Bill, Mason and Chase!

Stanley is a new sponsor this year, providing our guests with ceramic lined, vacuum seal water bottles of their excursions on the river and lake. One time use plastic water bottles are a blight to aquatic environments, so everything we can do to alleviate this, the better.  Thanks to Stanley for supporting us in this way and helping us spread the word of reducing plastic waste.  Thanks to Dan and Ralph!

ECHO and Airflo.

Rajeff Sports (ECHO and Airflo) provide our guests with rods, reels and lines for the Elk Lake Weekend. We have been working with the team at Rajeff ever since the beginning and their support of this model has been integral in us introducing more people to the sport of Fly Fishing through their quality, honestly priced gear.  Thanks to Bob for all the support!

The Mountaineer does not condone smoking cigars, but Sean and Eddy sure do!

Below are some more pics of a great weekend with a great group of people. Everyone learned, enjoyed some amazing weather, caught some beautiful Brook Trout and explored the preserve. We had groups venture further than we have in the past, unlocking new “zones” for campers in the future to adventure through with a Fly Rod in hand.

Next year’s camp is full…but we are taking names for the waiting list. And, don’t forget that FREE Fly Casting lessons start on the first Wednesday in August and will go every Wednesday evening during August from 7-8pm at The Keene Valley Lodge, just down the road from the shop. Call ahead if you’re interested!

It was a long weekend…THANK YOU to all the guests for joining us for the first time or returning for another visit.  See everyone next year!

Branch River Brook Trout

The “crew” at Fly Fishing Camp


Accessing the inaccessible Brook Trout waters in an undisclosed location