Happy New Year, Coldwater Conservation Fund members! With recent rains on the West Coast, snow across much of the interior, and a good mixture of both rain and snow on the East Coast, we are truly in the heart of winter. Winter precipitation, though, is what pulls steelhead and salmon out of the salt, builds up mountain snowpack that melts off into stream and rivers, and fills lakes - all of the ingredients for another year of great trout fishing. In that spirit, 2012 promises to be a full year for the CCF; read on.
In the next few weeks you will receive a letter from TU's CEO, Chris Wood, that provides an overview of the remarkable things that Trout Unlimited is accomplishing on the ground for coldwater fisheries. The project list is long, but I encourage all of you to take the time to read through it, and in doing so to take the measure of the full scope of TU's work. Our ability to work with a wide range of partners and to address every aspect of coldwater fisheries conservation, from focused, local restoration projects to leadership roles in massive federal resource management efforts, makes TU unique in the conservation world. What we do for trout and salmon is spectacular, and your contributions are a cornerstone on which that success is built.
By now each of you should have received our 2012 CCF trips mailing. In planning the trips, we made a real effort to create a slate of offerings that spread trips across the country, tied them into TU work on the ground, offered a range of prices, and included an old favorite or two (including two saltwater trips). CCF trips are hosted and led by TU staff, and are a terrific way to spend a few days on the water in beautiful places and to meet like-minded conservationists. Thank you for the response that we have already had from many of you! Trips are filling, some of them very fast, so I encourage you to consult your calendar and give us a call. For more information, go to www.tu.org/trips , or contact Sarah Davies at email@example.com  with your questions or to sign up.
In the next few months we will host three events for CCF members and friends of TU. You will find information about these events, an article about a new TU partnership in South America, and some timely fly tying advice in this edition of the Complete Angler. As always, thank you for your support! CCF members are the philanthropic leaders of TU, and I am very grateful to you. I hope to see you in 2012.
Stephen D. Trafton
Managing Director, Coldwater Conservation Fund