Workshops will help anglers build rods, land fish

Anyone who wants to build his or her own fly rod, then catch a steelhead with it, has a chance to learn those skills in two upcoming workshops planned this fall in the Rogue Valley.

Oregon's popular Passport to the Outdoors program is hosting a Sept. 22 class on fly-fishing for steelhead on the Rogue River followed by an Oct. 21-22 workshop on how to build a fly rod.

The courses are offered to men and women at least 18.

"We have a lot of folks who take the fly-fishing course and then come back for the rod-building," says Nancy Smogor, who runs the program for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The Sept. 22 class is taught by members of the Rogue Fly Fishers Association and will focus on turning basic fly-fishing skills into tactics useful to catch steelhead in the Rogue. The class, which costs $75, will have up to 30 participants and will include lessons on river-wading.

Food and equipment will be available, but participants are encouraged to bring their own waders and rods if they have them.

On Oct. 20-21, the group will host a workshop meant to teach the skills for basic fly-rod building at home. Roger Fairfield will help participants build their own two-piece, medium-action fly rod.

While participants will work on their rods during the workshop, chances are the rods will have to be finished at home. If so, materials will be provided to do so.

Materials and instruction will be provided and the workshop is open to adult men and women. The cost is $125, and the class will be limited to 10 people.

"To be able to build your own fly rod at that price really is a deal," Smogor says.

For additional information on workshops and for registration forms e-mail or visit online.


GRANTS PASS — The Middle Rogue Steelhead chapter of Trout Unlimited is holding its annual salmon derby Sept. 8 along the middle Rogue River.

The derby is the only scheduled fundraiser of the year for the 400-plus member chapter based in Grants Pass.

A buffet banquet is scheduled for 5 p.m. Sept. 7 at the Riverside Convention Center. The event includes a raffle and auctions.

Fishermen meet at 5:15 a.m. at the Josephine County Fairgrounds for breakfast before leaving with their guides.

Derby participants will fish anywhere on the Rogue for fall chinook salmon, and prizes will go for the heaviest fish per two-person teams as well as heaviest overall fish.

The cost is $275 per seat in the boat, including the banquet and other meals.

Information about registration forms can be found at online.

For more information, call derby chairperson Lou Hickey at 955-1837.

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