Letter From Great Smoky Mountain Chapter President

Letter From GSM TU Chapter President

Here's hoping everyone is happy and healthy as we enter the month of February and a new year! This is the time of year when the days are beginning to get longer and you can feel that Spring is not too far away. We still have the potential for winter weather the next two months but thoughts can now turn towards the coming warmer months here in the Smokies. We have had a very wet winter here and that should bode well for our streams, rivers, and aquifers this summer.

The last two months have been a blur as we started to prepare for "Iron Man Fly Contest 2019" and the Atlanta Fly Fishing Show last weekend. However I took time out a couple of weeks back to put new line on my three main fly reels in anticipation of Spring fishing soon to arrive. It will be here before you know it and I can hardly wait for fresh waters to discover.

Thanks to everyone who attended or donated to "Iron Man Fly Contest 2019", it was another great success as fourteen fly tiers competed this year to a packed house. We were able to raise enough funds to send a boy or girl to Trout Camp this summer in the Smokies. Applications will soon be accepted for a child between the ages of 12 and 15 years old to attend camp. Again thank you to everyone and especially our sponsors for their continued support for this great event. See the article below for winners list and story.

Our next chapter meeting will be on Thursday February 28th, 2019 at our new meeting location DEAD END BBQ in Knoxville TN. I am excited about this one as we will be hosting a presentation that is unique and never done before at a local Trout Unlimited meeting.

We will be welcoming Katelyn Hillmeyer, an archaeologist who recently had been working at the Great Smoky Mountains Park. She has a Master of Arts in Geography from Western Michigan University and a Bachelors of Art in Archaeology and Art History from Cornell College. Best of all she is an accomplished angler and fly tier who competed in the "Iron Man Fly Contest 2018" and placed in the top four, and this year became our first woman fly tier to win top honors in the "Iron Man Fly Contest 2019". Do not miss this chapter event as we dive deeper in to the history and origins of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

As always thanks to everyone who attends our meetings and events, it is your chapter and we invite everyone to get involved this year. Please bring families and friends, and remember you never have to be a Trout Unlimited member to attend a Great Smoky Mountain TU chapter activity, just a love of the outdoors and fellowship of those who feel the same.

Follow us on our GSM website and to stay current with chapter news and updates, please visit our GSM Facebook: http://m.facebook.com/GreatSmokyMountainTU/

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