Fly-fishers with a competitive streak, or those who just enjoy seeing people try to out-fish one another, have a lot to look forward to in the next few weeks.
There are at least three fly-fishing competitions coming up — two that have become well established and a newcomer.
The action begins with the Friends of the Upper Delaware River’s One-Bug contest April 27-29. It’s a two-day affair that works like it sounds: You select one fly, and that’s the only one you can use all day. Lose the fly in a tree, to a fish or snag on the bottom, you’re finished.
(You’re allowed to fish for fun after that point, but your catches won’t count.)
The entry fee is $2,400 per team — and it’s sold out, with 17 teams planning to compete. The One Bug is the FUDR’s main fundraising event, with the money going to conservation and stream restoration efforts.
“The event really connects the community to the rivers and generates a substantial and much-needed economic shot in the arm for the local businesses that have struggled through the long winter,” FUDR executive director Dan Plummer said. “Our restaurants, hotels, shops, and other businesses all benefit from the folks that come for the weekend. All One Bug proceeds stay invested right here in our area and help with all the work FUDR is doing to protect and benefit our resource.”
The One Bug kicks off with cocktails Friday night at the Old Capitol Theater in Hancock, followed by two days of fishing with guides. More information can be found at www.fudr.org.
One bug not enough? Head north for the Ausable Two-Fly Challenge in Wilmington, near Lake Placid. This competition is usually described as laid back, a good thing, since wading the rushing, boulder-studded West Branch of the Ausable can be anything but relaxing.
This year’s Two Fly is scheduled for May 18-19. The fishing should be good, considering the mild conditions this spring. The entry fee is $75 for adults and $25 for anglers 16 and younger. If you want to attend the banquet only at the Hungry Trout restaurant, it’s $30.
An application form can be found at www.whitefaceregion.com.
And then there’s Trout Power, a tournament June 9-10, designed to promote the West Canada Valley by focusing on the trout fishing of West Canada Creek. Organized by Jordan Ross, founder of JP Ross Fly Rods, Trout Power has a $60 entry fee for each two-person team and a $1,000 grand prize for the most trout in total inches, documented by the angler with a digital camera and measuring tape. Check-in is 6 a.m. Saturday. Fishing starts at 7. Fishing resumes Sunday morning, concluding at 10:30 a.m.
It’s not a fly-fishing tournament — all tackle is welcome, as long as no bait is used and lures or flies have only one hook. All fish are to be released.
Renowned fly-fishing photographer Brian O’Keefe of “Catch” magazine is scheduled at attend a meet-and-greet in the area Friday evening.
Part of the goal of Trout Power is to show Brookfield Renewable Energy how its policy of pulsing water from its dam at Hinckley Lake discourages anglers from visiting the area. The fluctuating flow makes fishing difficult, if not impossible, and maybe even dangerous. Brookfield has shown some PR savvy by signing on as a sponsor of Trout Power. Encouraging? Time will tell. Information can be found at www.troutpower.-blogspot.com.
Some people turn up their noses at fly-fishin contests, but events like these are usually heavier on camaraderie than competition, and they’re all for good causes.