Fishing is for Kids

Children and fishing -- an iconic image of summer made even better in Sun Valley's pristine trout streams

Children and fishing -- an iconic image of summer made even better in Sun Valley's pristine trout streams (photo Brett Wilson)

There is an undeniable attraction between children and fishing. The iconic image of little ones poised on a dock dangling a worm-baited line into the water defines the joys of a childhood summer. Replace the dock with a pristine rushing river, place the children at the edge of an eddy, replace the worm with a fly and you have Sun Valley at its finest and the beginning of a love affair with a sport that lasts a lifetime.

To get the kids started with the right wader forward, Silver Creek Outfitters offers special instruction to make the adventure as fun as it is skill building. Fly fishing camps for children ages 8 to 12 are offered Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and can be arranged on Tuesdays and Thursdays as well with a minimum of three participants. You bring the child, Silver Creek provides a guide, equipment, snacks and a day he or she won’t forget.

Stop into Silver Creek and get out into the river!

Stop into Silver Creek and get out into the river!

First stop is checking in at Silver Creek HQ, located at 500 North Main Street in Ketchum to gear up. Though everything they need is provided, everything they want may not be. This could include baseball caps, logo t-shirts or all sorts of fun things like binoculars and polarized sunglasses that cut the glare of the water and help you see into the river. And don’t forget the sunscreen. Then there are the flies. Again, while provided, chances are getting your camper away from the cases and cases of colorful tied feathers, thread and fur could take a while.

Once they look the part, it’s off to the river they go. My son and his best friend set off last week with kid-friendly guide Brett Wilson who whisked them away and off to their adventure in record time. Five hours later we met back up at the shop. The boys were smiling and laughing, slightly wet and full of fish tales. On their secret stretch of river, they both landed two rainbow trout and hooked into a few more. They were thrilled and considered themselves quite the fishermen, talking with ease about which flies they used and how proficiently they cast.

Boys and fish equal one huge smile (photo Brett Wilson)

Boys and fish equal one huge smile (photo Brett Wilson)

With children, though, fishing is only peripherally about catching fish. Silver Creek teaches young anglers to be hands-on and embrace the entire experience from turning over rocks to search for bugs, to sitting on the banks to enjoy a snack, to kicking up the grass and watching the hoppers fly. Fishing is an experience and all the different parts are what add up to a memorable day and get the children invested in the process of fishing.

Catching fish is only part of the fun but it is undeniably a big part!

Catching fish is only part of the fun but it is undeniably a big part! (photo Brett Wilson)

Camp runs from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and more details may be found HERE.

In my family, learning to fly fish is not an option. At about age eight, everyone is put into waders and put into the river and taught the joys of this lifetime sport. However, as with all activities that require learning new skills, sometimes it is best for the parents to leave the instruction up to the pros. Thank you, Brett, for getting the boy so excited about fishing and wanting to come back immediately and frequently!

Flies, glorious flies!

Flies, glorious flies!

If you are over the age of 12 but would like some basic instruction or a refresher, you, are also in luck. Silver Creek offers what they call “Fly Fishing 101,” a one-day introduction to the sport that covers the basics: casting, knot-tying, equipment selection, fly selection and trout food. Ready to move to the water? Graduate to “Fly Fishing 201” that offers three hours of practical instruction on the river.  Free casting clinics are also held in front of the Sun Valley Lodge Tuesday through Saturday evenings from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. A member of the guiding team will teach casting technique. Equipment is provided or you may bring your own.

Be sure to stop by the Sun Valley Lodge Tuesday through Saturday evenings to learn, practice or refresh your casting skills at free clinics

Be sure to stop by the Sun Valley Lodge Tuesday through Saturday evenings to learn, practice or refresh your casting skills at free clinics

Also coming up at Silver Creek Outfitters is a Tenkara Clinic called “Simple Fly Fishing” with Patagonia Founder Yvon Chouinard on Thursday, July 17. All the proceeds benefit Idaho Rivers United. The Fly Fishing Film Festival is also right around the corner and will be held on July 25 at the Sun Valley Opera HouseFly Fishing Fair. For full information on all classes and programs, please click HERE.

Fly fishing is one of the Sun Valley area’s finest resources and no trip is complete without getting into one of the region’s many crystal clear, trophy trout streams. Book a trip or class today for you and your children. Chances are, you’ll be hooked.

–RES

Fishing is a lifetime sport and a great family activity. Give it a try! (photo Brett Wilson)

Fishing is a lifetime sport and a great family activity. Give it a try! (photo Brett Wilson)


Free Fly Fishing Casting Clinics – Sun Valley Lodge Lawn. Tuesday – Saturday from 5:30pm – 6:30pm.

Come join the Silver Creek Outfitters professionals for a free fly fishing casting clinic. These clinics will take place Tuesdays through Saturdays on the Sun Valley Lodge Lawn from 5:30pm – 6:30pm. All equipment will be provided. For additional information please call Silver Creek Outfitters at 208 726 5282.

It’s time for the Fly Fishing Film Tour!

On Wednesday, February 19, thoughts in Sun Valley will turn from fresh powder to freshwater; to trout streams and fly fishing to be exact. That evening at the historic Opera House in the Sun Valley Village, the 2014 Fly Fishing Film Tour (a.k.a. the F3T) will roll film. Labeled the “original and preeminent exhibition of fly fishing cinema,” the F3T is a one-of-a-kind experience.

The Fly Fishing Film Tour returns to Sun Valley February 19

The Fly Fishing Film Tour returns to Sun Valley February 19

According to tour producers, “Each year fishy folk of all ages gather at premieres to soak up films from around the world, spin a few yarns amongst friends and dream about casts still unmade.”

This is a film tour to watch. Since its inception in 2007, the F3T has grown more than 30 percent each year, reaching nearly 50,000 anglers across North America last season. The event returns to Sun Valley this year, connecting with our vast community of fly fishing devotees.

Sun Valley is fly fishing Nirvana, offering some of the finest trout fishing in the world

Sun Valley is fly fishing Nirvana, offering some of the finest trout fishing in the world

With eight films on offer, there is something to satisfy every midwinter’s fly fishing fantasy. From a piece on the Gold Cup Invitational Tarpon Fly Tournament, to an insiders’ look at the pursuit of wild brook trout and landlocked salmon, to a journey to the furthest reaches of the Alaskan frontier, fly rod will travel. The evening brings to life the personalities and places helping to define this lifetime sport. You’ll see a lot of pretty spectacular fish, too. For a full description of the films being shown, please click HERE.

The screening begins at 7 p.m. Discounted tickets for $13 are available in advance at two fabulous local fly shops: Silver Creek Outfitters (with a second location in the Sun Valley Village) and Lost River Outfitters, both in Ketchum. At the door, tickets will be $15.

If this photo makes your heart sing, then this film fest is for you (photo Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

If this photo makes your heart sing, then this film fest is for you (photo Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

Fly fishing is a way of life and nearly a year-round pursuit in Sun Valley. Take an evening’s vacation from the slopes and trails and span the globe with some of the most daring anglers around, setting your hook for a night of camaraderie and adventure. Local fishing is excellent this time of year, too, if you wade into the current properly prepared. Warm layers and a few pairs of fingerless gloves will make for a fantastic day of winter fishing. For updated fishing reports, please click HERE.

Fish on!

–RES

Winter fishing can be very productive, and very beautiful, in the Sun Valley area

Winter fishing can be very productive, and very beautiful, in the Sun Valley area

Pull!

Ready, aim, fire -- this was a memorable weekend for sporting gun enthusiasts

Ready, aim, fire -- this was a memorable weekend for sporting gun enthusiasts

Last weekend, Silver Creek Outfitters and world famous gun manufacturers, Beretta, joined forces to again provide a memorable event for gun sporting enthusiasts. Dozens gathered on a warm, sunny Friday to demo Beretta’s guns at the scenic Sun Valley Gun Club during what is dubbed the Legacy weekend.

The Sun Valley Gun Club provided what Silver Creek Outfitter's owner Terry Ring called the perfect venue for the event

The Sun Valley Gun Club provided what Silver Creek Outfitter's owner Terry Ring called the perfect venue for the event

During the warmer weather months, the club, located just across the street from the entrance to historic Trail Creek Cabin, invites beginners to sharp shooters to come out and try their aim at Sporting Clays, Trap and Skeet, Double Trap, Wobble Trap, Duck Tower and 5-Stand. Certified instructors are always available to help beginners get started or to provide a refresher lesson. During the Legacy demo day, things get even more fun and interesting.

Beretta's Mobile Showroom brought the storied manufacturer's inventory right to the Gun Club

Beretta's Mobile Showroom brought the storied manufacturer's inventory right to the Gun Club

Beretta shotguns are already featured at the Sun Valley Gun Club, so it only further enhances the experience when Silver Creek Outfitter’s owner, Terry Ring, arranges to have the huge Beretta trailer, with equally huge graphics, pull into the club’s parking lot. Outfitted with Beretta’s beautifully crafted range of guns, enthusiasts are welcome to try out any that look appealing. All you need to do is sign a waiver, chose your gun and take your stand at your assigned station. Locals and visitors alike stepped up to the challenge.

“The event was a huge success for new and experienced shooters,” Ring said. “Our guests were excited to demo Beretta’s range of shotguns shooting Sporting Clays, Trap and Skeet.  The Sun Valley Gun Club was the perfect venue for the event.”

Many available guns were checked out and in use at Sun Valley Gun's Clubs stations during demo day

Many available guns were checked out and in use at Sun Valley Gun Club's stations during demo day

The Beretta truck moved to downtown Ketchum outside Silver Creek’s flagship store on Saturday, allowing even more people to step in and enjoy the Mobile Showroom. Dealer representatives were on hand to show the full line of Beretta guns and shooting accessories.

Silver Creek Outfitters is known as one of the preeminent fly fishing shops in the country, but is also a destination for those who enjoy sporting guns, bird and duck hunting. Guns, hunting vests, boots, ammo, protective eyewear, shot and field bags and much more can all be found at the high-end outfitters located in both downtown Ketchum and at the Sun Valley Village, just in time for Upland bird and waterfowl hunting season in Idaho’s autumn.

Even if hunting is not your thing, shooting Sporting Clays, Trap and Skeet can be really fun. Just ask all the men and women who came out for the Legacy weekend.

Shooting Sporting Clays and Trap and Skeet is a fun way to enjoy an autumn day in Sun Valley

Shooting Sporting Clays and Trap and Skeet is a fun way to enjoy an autumn day in Sun Valley, whether you are a beginner or expert

For more information on the facilities or to schedule a lesson, please contact the Sun Valley Gun Club at (208) 622-2111. To learn more about Idaho’s fall hunting season through Silver Creek Outfitters, please click HERE.

Pull!

–RES

8th Annual Fly Fishing Film Festival

Hosted by Silver Creek Outfitters

Friday, July 19

7p; Sun Valley Opera House

Reception starting at 5:30p at the Sun Valley Village Store with casting demos, demo rods & games.

More details www.silver-creek.com or call 208.622.5282

Casting Coach

Interested in fly fishing? Try a free casting clinic at the Sun Valley Lodge

Interested in fly fishing? Try a free casting clinic on the lawn by the Sun Valley Lodge

The Wood River Valley and surrounding area boast some of the most scenic, productive trout streams in the world. If you find yourself staring longingly at the Big Wood River as you drive near Boxcar Bend or over a bridge, or if you have heard tales of storied Silver Creek and would like to face off against those mythical trout yourself, this is the summer to learn to fly fish.

Not sure where to start? The easiest way to learn the basics of casting and gain confidence that, yes, this sport can be you, is to wander over to the broad green expanse of lawn in front of the Sun Valley Lodge at 5:30 p.m. on any convenient Tuesday through Saturday. This is when a different kind of ‘happy hour’ takes place — when Silver Creek Outfitters, with locations both in the Sun Valley Village and in Ketchum, provide a free casting clinic to interested anglers.

Guide and teacher Jim Curran introduces students to the sport he loves

Guide and teacher Jim Curran introduces students to the sport he loves

On a sunny afternoon last week, I met up for a clinic with teacher Jim Curran, a fisherman nearly as storied as the waters he has fished every day for the past 50 years. With rods laid out at the ready, Jim, a Certified Fly Casting Instructor, invited his group of seven students to grab one and find a spot on the lawn. Soon, the filament was flying, but without hooks on the end of the line, this was a fail-safe way to get a feel for the action of casting. Jim also let the students know, “there is nothing you can do wrong here today. You can let the rod fly over the back of your head and land on the ground and it’s just fine.”

Silver Creek Outfitters provides all the gear you need to practice your casting

Silver Creek Outfitters provides all the gear you need to practice your casting

The group that flocked to the lawn that evening was comprised of: one family from the Bay area where the father, an experienced fisherman, wanted to share the activity with his young sons and wife; Paul and Karen from San Diego who own a vacation home along the Big Wood River and wanted to join in the action they see outside their windows; and a man whose girlfriend loves to fly fish. It was learn, or be left behind.

Though the students came to the lesson with varying aptitudes and experience, Jim quickly had everyone working on proper casting technique. “Elbows in,” “wrists taut,” “thumb on top of the rod,” “stop at 12 o’clock, cast at 2 o’clock,” Jim repeated as he gave each angler individual attention and instructions in what he calls substance and style.  In short order, the group was laying out nice straight line, false casting  and roll casting.

By all accounts, everyone in the class felt that after only 45 minutes, their skills had improved exponentially and that fly fishing was really not as complex as imagined.

Silver Creek Outfitters provides, free of charge, rods, reels and priceless instruction from guides like Jim every Tuesday through Saturday from now through Labor Day weekend. Whether you are curious, rusty, or could just use some professional tips, come on out. Then, if you’re, um, hooked, be sure to book a guide from Silver Creek to explore the area’s pristine waters and put those newly honed techniques to work.

See you on the river!

–RES

The Lodge is a picturesque backdrop for your first venture into fly fishing

The Lodge is a picturesque backdrop for your first venture into fly fishing

Free Fly Casting Clinics

Hosted By Silver Creek Outfitters

DATES: Starts Tuesday June 25th runs through Labor Day Weekend 

Tuesday through Saturday 5:30 – 6:30pm

Join a member of our guiding team and learn to fly cast, or brush up on that double haul technique. With our new location in Sun Valley, we are now able to offer nightly casting clinics to all who are curious or just a little rusty. We offer nightly sessions Tuesday through Saturday on the lawn in front of the Sun Valley Lodge from 5:30 pm to 6:30 pm. Equipment will be provided, but feel free to bring your own.

Location: On the lawn in front of the Sun Valley Lodge

 

It’s Almost Time to Go Fish!

One of the exquisite, healthy trout in our local rivers (photo courtesy Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

One of the exquisite, healthy trout in our local rivers (photo courtesy Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

Unlike many people who relocate to Sun Valley or become frequent visitors because of our amazing skiing and snowboarding, my family was first drawn to Sun Valley by the area’s world-class fly fishing. Raised by a father who is a consummate fisherman and a mother who also caught the bug, my brother and I were put into waders, handed a fly rod and placed in western trout streams when we no more than eight years old. Fishing was just what we did.

In 1983, the trout streams we waded into were Sun Valley’s. That year, our family’s summer vacation included throwing flies from drift boats in Montana, exploring desolate waters in western Canada and, finally, landing in the Wood River Valley. Before our two-week stay in a Wildflower condo on the Resort property ended, my parents had hired a real estate agent. The fishing, and everything else that comprises a Sun Valley summer, was that good.

Fish on! Just another glorious day fishing in Sun Valley

Fish on! Just another glorious day fishing in Sun Valley

So, when the winter runoff begins in earnest, when ski runs begin to transition to hiking and biking trails and when facets of bright sunlight bounce off of the currents of the Big Wood River beneath the bridges on my daily errands, my mind turns to fishing.

With May just around the corner, so is fly fishing season. The Big Wood, the river that wends through Hailey and Ketchum, opens on May 25, as does fabled Silver Creek south of Bellevue. According to Silver Creek Outfitters, the area’s leading fly fishing authority with outposts both in the Sun Valley Village and downtown Ketchum, indicators are pointing to good early fishing. According to the shop’s report, “Our snow pack is currently at about 80 percent of average and the Climate Prediction Center at NOAA is calling for below average precipitation for the next several months in Central and Southern Idaho. For the angler, this means the fishing should be good earlier this year on our freestone rivers due to the lower flows and often when the flows are lower, the hatches, like the Green Drake, will also come off a bit earlier.”

Unlike the past two years, when the Big Wood ran high (making for tenuous wading) until well in the early summer, this year’s conditions may let us get our feet wet much earlier. All signs point to productive fishing on this very accessible and very beautiful river in the not-too-distant future, with wade-ability most likely by the end of June.

Bugs! Hatches! Dinner is served! (photo courtesy Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

Bugs! Hatches! Dinner is served! (photo courtesy Bryan Huskey, Silver Creek Outfitters)

For novice anglers or those looking to enhance or refresh their skills as the season begins, Silver Creek Outfitters Fly Fishing 101 Clinics begin on May 4 and continue throughout the summer. These popular two-day classes cover the basics of a sport that may seem intimidating, but really isn’t – from casting to knot tying, bugs to wading. Beginning at the end of June, the shop’s top guides also offer free casting clinics on the lawn in front of the Sun Valley Lodge. 

And if May 25 seems like an awfully long time to wait to cast some line into a ripple, you can fish now on the Big Lost River. This tailwater gem (surrounded by some of the most inspiring, stunning views in the state) is about a two-hour drive from Ketchum near the town of Mackay. Again, Silver Creek Outfitter’s fishing guru reports, “Hatches on the Lost this time of year are a combination of Midge and Baetis and on the right day they can be spectacular. Some fish are spawning in the shallow riffles, so please wade with caution and leave them alone.”

Be sure to stop by the Ketchum location of Silver Creek Outfitters for the best advice on early season fishing (the Sun Valley store will open for the season when the season opens).

If you’re dreaming of clear trout streams, spectacular scenery and lazy lunches riverside, your wait is nearly over. Be sure to get your Idaho fishing license (for a day or a season), check your fly line, air out your waders and boots. And if you haven’t done so already, maybe it’s time to check in with a local realtor. You may get hooked, too.

–RES

Catching (& releasing) is only a part of fly fishing, but it sure is fun

Catching (& releasing) is only a part of fly fishing, but it sure is fun

 

 

Fly Fishing Film Festival

Fly Fishing Film Festival – Benefitting The Nature Conservancy

Friday, July 20

7:00pm; Sun Valley Opera House

Join us for fly fishing stories and adventures on the Sun Valley Opera House big screen.

Enjoy films from here in Idaho and far beyond, crafted by the likes of Felt Soul Media, Todd Moen,

Ryan Peterson, as well as our own Silver Creek Outfitters production.

Ticket Sales:  $15 in advance • Limited Seating

Pre-Party – 5pm at our store in the Sun Valley Mall

Call 208-622-5282 for more information

 

 

Product Fair

Saturday, July 21; 10am – 4pm

Silver Creek Outfitters, Ketchum Location

Live art from artist A.D. Maddox

BBQ by Apple’s Bar & Grill

Contact 208-726-5282

 

Fly Fishing Film Tour at Sun Valley Opera House

Fly Fishing Film Tour at Sun Valley Opera House

Thursday, February 23

6pm – 9:30pm

The Fly Fishing Film Tour is the 1st & world’s largest event of its kind. Traveling through the US and Canada each year the Fly Fishing Film Tour features incredible never-seen footage from waterways worldwide. With a party atmosphere, audience giveaways and valuable coupons, each screening is a celebration of the sport. The annual high-energy spectacle is the sport’s most anticipated live-event.

Discount tickets available now at both Ketchum and Sun Valley Silver Creek Outfitters locations.

Check out the trailers for some of the films featured in this years show. This is your chance to see the full version of our very own film “Doc Of The Drakes” shot here on Silver Creek this past summer.