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The Bluegills were biting at sawhill Ponds

Our first fishing trip in far too long checked all the boxes: good weather, a good group of kids, and good fishing.

Although several kids had fished before, no one had done Tenkara-style fishing. Tenkara is simple and lightweight, making it perfect for fishing the high country lakes and streams that we will be backpacking to this summer.

Learning to tie the “One Knot”

We started with an hour or so of basics, learning to tie fishing knots, and then how to set up a Tenkara rod and then how to cast with it. Then we were off to the ponds to put our new skills to use.

First casts

The fishing was slow at first, and there were more snags and snarls than strikes. But as the water warmed in the spring sun, the fish became more active.

Getting the hang of it

By lunchtime the kids were bringing bluegills and sunfish to the fly pretty regularly.

The prize

The fish were not huge, but they were lively and fun to catch. Bluegills are good eating, and pretty much every kid took fish home to fry and eat.

This was a great intro and skill builder. We’ll be putting these skills to use catching trout on future trips to the Pumphouse and the Snowy Range.

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