FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission once again is offering anglers a unique opportunity to catch trout in the winter without traveling to the mountains at one of six clinics being held at the John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center in Fayetteville.
The annual winter fly-fishing clinics for novice and intermediate anglers start Jan. 7, 2017. A fly-fishing merit badge workshop for Boy Scouts will be held in April. In anticipation of the fly-fishing clinics, the commission will stock more than 1,000 catchable-sized brook, brown and rainbow trout into the center’s ponds on Dec. 14. The agency also will provide loaner rods and reels, as well as tackle, for all fly-fishing clinic participants.
Basic Fly-Fishing Clinics
Basic Fly-Fishing Clinics, designed for anglers with little to no fly-fishing experience, will be offered on Jan. 7, Jan. 21 and Feb. 4, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. Trained volunteers will provide instruction in the Joan Wulff method of fly-casting, as well as instruction in fly-fishing equipment and knot tying. During the on-the-water portion of the course in the afternoon, participants will learn how to land a fish using a fly-rod.
Basic clinics are suitable for participants 13 years and older; however, students 15 years and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Each clinic is limited to 25 participants on a first-come, first-serve basis. Because of space limitations and the popularity of these basic clinics, participants are asked to register for only one Basic Fly-Fishing Clinic.
Intermediate Fly-Fishing Clinic
An Intermediate Fly-Fishing Clinic will be held on Feb. 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This clinic will take participants beyond the basics and introduce them to using the line-hand, false casting, casting on all planes and the shooting line. Participants will also learn how to develop power application and cast accurately.
Because this course is based on the Wulff method used in the basic classes, participants registering in the Intermediate Fly-Fishing Clinic must have completed a Basic Fly-Fishing Clinic or Discovery Course offered in 2015 or 2016, or the Basic Fly-fishing clinic in 2017.
The Intermediate Fly-Fishing Clinic is suitable for participants 13 years and older; however, students 15 years and younger must be accompanied by an adult. This clinic is limited to the first 25 people.
Boy Scout Fly-Fishing Merit Badge Clinics
For active Boy Scouts 11 years and older, the Pechmann Center is offering a 2-day Fly-Fishing Merit Badge Clinic on April 1 and 2. Among the topics that will be covered are fly tying, knots, fly-casting, fish identification, first aid, fishing regulations, cleaning and cooking catch. Overnight camping is available for scouts. Troops wishing to camp should arrive at the Pechmann Center no later than 8:30 p.m., on March 31.
Interested Scoutmasters should contact Pechmann Center Director Tom Carpenter to register their scouts. The 2-day Fly-Fishing Merit Badge Clinic is limited to 30 scouts with a maximum of 10 scouts from each troop.
Pre-registration is required for all clinics. Registration for the two basic fly-fishing clinics is open now. Registration for the Intermediate Fly-Fishing Clinic will open Jan. 17, 2017. Registration for the 2-Day Fly-Fishing Merit Badge Clinic for active Boy Scouts opens March 1, 2017. To register, visit the John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center’s webpage and click on the program calendar and registration link, or access the registration link directly.
The John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center is located at 7489 Raeford Road, across from Lake Rim. Wildlife Commission staff at the Pechmann Center conducts fishing workshops, events and clinics throughout the year. Most programs are free and open to the public. For more information about the center, visit www.ncwildlife.org and click on the “Learning” link.