The Bastrop Outing got TWFF off to an
educational good start. The tying classes were excellent thanks to
Coco Davenport, Pam Vestal, and feature fly tier, Martin Pursch.
Coco and Pam did a wonderful job of getting all of us "newbies"
started out on the right foot. With our newfound ability we were
able to follow along with Mr. Pursch on some flies that were just a
tad more sophisticated.
I personally came home with 5 flies I
tied myself. I have always been a die-hard fan of buying flies or
just sweet-talking Ronnie Ray into tying up whatever I needed. I
have never been a fan of small close work such as sewing etc. I was
in for a wonderful surprise through the first minutes of Coco
Davenport's classes. My expectation was that I would be unable to
handle all those things happening at once—but
I did. Coco systematically (don't forget calmly) took us through
steps whereby I produced my first real fly. The next day I saw a zip
lock bag of flies on the shelf in the kitchen area. I started asking
people if they belonged to them and no one claimed them. They were
mine! I couldn't believe that flies that looked that good actually
belonged to me. I hope everyone experienced the same level of
satisfaction that I did. I think there were approx. 15+ of our women
that participated in the classes. Texas Parks and Wildlife's, Ann
Coordinator, was responsible for lending TWFF the tying kits. If you
get a chance, let Ann know we appreciate her and TPWD's efforts in
Mr. Pursch began his class by explaining
to us a bit about how fly fishing works in regards to flies. He
explained in depth the meaning of "matching the hatch." He explained
the different groups of flies such as dry flies, wet flies,
emergents, nymphs, etc. with the aid of handouts to make it visually
as clear as possible. As he instructed a couple of tables of ladies
tying flies he kept us all together using his dry erase board. This
really was a good tool by which we could all understand what was
next and if we had done it correctly. He is a great guy and a good
teacher and if you ever get a chance to take classes from him you
will be pleased. Check out his store and information at
As announced, Ronnie Ray held beginning
casting classes. Several "casters" braved the wet and cold weather
to learn the basics of the fly rod and reel. He explained how to
assemble the components to get ready to cast and then the dynamics
and technique of a good cast. We hope those new "casters" will
return to more outings to put those skills to work in catching fish.
I promise the next step is a lot more enjoyable. Once again thank
TPWD's Ann Miller for the use of the fly rods.
A handful of folks went to the trout
lake to fish. It seems that the weather, the fish and some marine
floatation devices refused to cooperate.
Saturday evening's catered meal
consisted of Lasagna and trimmings. Steve Robbins, our scheduled
speaker for the evening, had to cancel due to being ill with the
flu. His wife, Ann, called on Friday evening indicating Steve had
been sick starting Thursday. He thought perhaps he might feel better
and make it Saturday, but he just didn't get better in time for us
to hear his "Top Twenty-Five Trout Streams of America" presentation.
Many thanks to Ronnie Ray for pulling my "fat out of the fire" once
again by pinch hitting and giving his presentation on kayaking and
fishing the Colorado River. You're the best!!
On Sunday, the board meeting was held
just around the corner from the park at Audrey Ambrose's property.
Sarah Valentine cooked up some fine grilled carnivorous wonders.
These grilled-to-perfection delights were accompanied by a beautiful
"work of art" salad by Sheila Hood. Thank-you all for a great lunch.
Audrey Ambrose brought her mom to our cookout/meeting. It was a
pleasure for our members to meet her, and for me, to see her again.
The meeting held that day gets the award for the best meeting since
the beginning of TWFF in my humble opinion. There was so much
accomplished. In addition to accomplishments, it was fun and easy
and essentially fast considering some of the meetings of the past.
Anybody remember those four-hour meetings? Thanks to all in
attendance for your vision, excitement, willingness to volunteer,
and shear good heartedness to help our club and others through fly