Go Fish Frost Valley
Updated: Mar 17, 2019
by Darleen M. Jobson-Larkin | Gregory O. Jobson-Larkin
The thing we call life is a great space to 'live long and prosper" while learning lifelong personal interest skills that may both intrigue and excite.
Take "Fly Fishing," for instance... sort of a male dominated relaxing activity, hobby, even sport. I am sure you've seen commercials in media and magazine showing that lone "male" fly fishing individual at peace, at rest and seriously casting rod and reel. Wait where are the children?
A bit about Frost Valley in Clareville, NY.
Frost Valley YMCA provides people of all ages and abilities with enriching, even life-altering, outdoor experiences. Located on over 5,000 acres in the heart of the Catskill Mountains, just 2 hours north of New York City – they provide year-round access to nature, adventure, environmental education and fun.
- See more at: http://frostvalley.org
The Catskills are the birthplace of American dry fly fishing, and the local trout streams are the destination for anglers around the world. A Fly-Fishing Membership gives access to over 8 miles of trout streams, including the East and West Branches of the upper Navesink River, Biscuit Brook, and Pigeon Brook.
The streams are not stocked but they support Wild Brook Trout and naturalized Brown Trout (see photo) and offer unparalleled fishing. I caught over 5 tiny ones, the most in our group,
Julien, then age 4 (as seen in photos), enjoyed the entire casting class and especially the catching fish part, which we all participated in carefully removing the hook to throw all the fish back. "Swim little fish, swim home." said Julien (see fly-fishing photos).
He started far from the water's edge, up on the bank, quite comfortable away from the action; but as the day wore on, and the intrigue overcame fear, Julien (as seen in photos) and I were inseparable.
First, I LOVE homeschooling our children, especially when the first-hand, hands-on learning occurs outdoors. Now couple the 5K acre pristine outdoor learning platform of Frost Valley, with the totally immersive learning experience of Fly Fishing; Heaven-meets-Nirvana and this Ah Ha Moment master class.
Fly Fishing is a lot like crochet or Knitting; you just sit back, relax, and let your fingers do the walking. My instructor, Richard, is just as kindly and gentlemanly as the photos impart, and wow what a lifetime knowledge-based he works from! He is the Fly Fish Whisperer incarnate.
Spending precious time out-of-doors with your child/children strengthens the natural bond; as the trust and stability established indoors at home now extend outdoors making the wild seem just a little tamer.
I'll share a brief mini-class on how to cast:
How To Cast
1. Load your fly rod.
2. Grip the rod like you are shaking someone’s hand.
3. Start your back cast. Begin with your fly line in front of you and cast it back. (I learned the overhead cast, there is also side-cast method.)
4. Pause when your fly line fully leaves the surface. Once you see the line leave the surface, pause at the apex of your back-casting movement. This allows the momentum of that movement to travel all the way down the line.
5. Stop your hand abruptly with the tip of the fly rod still slightly pointing upward. The line will continue to transfer momentum from your movement but keeping the rod tip upright will help the line carry out to its complete distance rather than falling short.
· You will feel the rod “unload”
· Now, you are Fly Fishing