Native Odyssey: Heather Harkavy

Editor’s note: The TU Costa Five Rivers Program is sending five college students on a native trout odyssey across America this summer. Meet Heather Harkavy, one of the five lucky participants.

Hi everyone. My name is Heather Harkavy and I am a senior at Florida State University, majoring in marketing and minoring in hospitality. Throughout my time at Florida State, I have been involved with establishing and running the school’s fishing club in order to bring like-minded individuals together across our campus community. As well, I began a Florida Seminoles CCA chapter and have worked alongside Captains for Clean Water to spread awareness about Florida’s environmental issues and ways we can make a change.

Thanks to my father, I have been exposed to this incredible sport of fishing since a very young age. Growing up in south Florida, the majority of my fly fishing has revolved around backcountry species such as tarpon, bonefish, permit, snook and redfish. In a few short weeks, I will be turning in my 10-weight fly rod for a 3-weight. I look forward to the skills I will develop and the wealth of knowledge I will acquire as I am exposed to trout fishing, a niche of angling to which I have had little exposure.

As a young lady angler, I hope to inspire other females, as well as the next generation of fisher folk, to follow their passions, fish hard and conserve the resources and fisheries they care so much about.

This sport has given me a knack for adventure and a stronger understanding of the world we live in. I always say that fishing is one third the fish, one third the environments to which you are exposed, and one third the extraordinary mentors and personalities you cross paths with along the way. I hope this upcoming adventure provides us with exactly that. I am super stoked for what the next two months have in store as I glean an understanding for fisheries I have yet to be exposed to, take in the beauty of the West and promote these incredible experiences to the world.

I am not yet sure what my future entails, but I do know that I have the travel bug and I plan on putting it to good use. I hope to explore the vast world we live in, inspire others each and every day, promote conservation, and glean a better understanding for the diversity of fisheries I cross paths with along the way.

By Chris Hunt.