Fly fishers already flock to the pristine waters around West Yellowstone, carefully planning their visits around hatches of bugs that bring out rising trout.
But those especially dedicated to the sport will add another trip to West as it hosts the 46th annual National Fly Fishing Fair and Conclave. The premier event dedicated to the art and sport of fly fishing chose to return to West after a fun-filled week of activities at last year's conclave.
The conclave, which will be held Aug. 31 through Sept. 3, is the largest educational experience dedicated to fly fishing and will feature a variety of workshops, demonstrations and displays. Every free space of park and green space, including the high school football field, becomes a convenient carpet for casting clinics for the hundreds of attendees who will take in the clinics.
The event features more than 75 workshops and clinics on casting, fly tying, and on-water fishing techniques taught by well-known instructors. Casting and fishing instructors include Bruce Richards, Rhea Topping and Bob Jacklin.
Non-fishing related workshops are also available for people who do not fly fish or want to try something different.
The workshops are designed to appeal to a broad range of interests and skill levels. Authors like Misako Ishimura, Anders Halverson, Mike Lawson, and Al Beatty will be available to sign books and give presentations and workshops.
Over 75 fly tiers will be on hand demonstrating their art. Such notable tiers as 2010 Buszek Award winner Scott Sanchez, Bruce Staples, Henry Hoffman and others will be attending. The fly fishing fair includes exhibits with the latest in gear, outfitters, conservation information and other topics.
"We are looking forward to being back at West Yellowstone this year. This fly fishing experience includes instructors and participants from all over the world. Come be inspired," FFF President Phil Greenlee said.
Other special event highlights:
-- Casting Rendezvous -- free casting clinics for all attendees;
-- Casting competitions -- 5-weight casting competition;
-- Women's program -- a one and a half day program tailored for women fly fishers;
-- Youth Camp -- a one-day program for youth age 8-17; and
-- Friday night live auction benefiting FFF.
People who attended the National Fly Fishing Fair and Conclave have said:
Held at the Holiday Inn, day passes are available at registration for $5 that cover entry to the fly fishing show, Casting Rendezvous and other free demonstrations. Entrance is free on Thursday. Fees vary for workshops.
People may join the Federation of Fly Fishers during the event. Online pre-registration closes at 5:00 pm Mountain time August 1, 2011, but on-site registration is available.
For more information about the conclave, visit www.federationconclave.org.