By Chad Chorney
On Aug. 2-3, Trout Unlimited will host the inaugural Big Wood Single Fly event in Ketchum, Idaho. While the event is billed as a fly fishing “contest,” competition takes a back seat to the event’s real purpose – shining the spotlight on the Big Wood River and TU’s Home Rivers Initiative.
The Big Wood River is an iconic western freestone river, flowing through the ski resort towns of Sun Valley, Ketchum and Hailey. The Wood, as it’s affectionately known, is the lifeblood of valley residents and visitors. Anglers from across the country enjoy the Big Wood’s wild rainbow trout fishery, and the river provides water for agricultural, industrial and municipal uses. While the Big Wood remains a viable fishery, the river’s health is in peril. Threats such as excessive water withdrawals, habitat loss, altered floodplains and disconnected tributaries place the future of the river in jeopardy. TU, along with conservation partner the Wood River Land Trust, recognized these threats, and launched a Home Rivers Initiative to turn the tide.
By participating in the 2014 Big Wood Single Fly, anglers will not only enjoy the Wood’s trout fishery, but help sustain the river for future generations. Anglers will gather in a fun, friendly setting, fishing the Big Wood with a single fly to determine who is “top gun.” Teams (consisting of two anglers, and accompanied by a local fishing “attendant”) will be recognized for catching the most, largest, and yes, smallest trout.
Go fishing. Have fun. Meet some new friends. Help a river. What could be better?
Registration, rules, and more information on the Big Wood Single Fly can be found at - http://www.tu.org/get-involved/national-events/2014-big-wood-single-fly-event