Mountain State Trout Festival a celebration of all things fishing
West Virginia Trout Unlimited is hosting the first-ever Mountain State Trout Festival June 1 and 2 at Snowshoe Mountain Resort.
The event includes seminars with world famous fishing experts, competitions and a vendor expo.
“We want to highlight the fisheries in the state of West Virginia,” Trout Unlimited’s Bubba Holt said. “I’ve fished every state east of the Mississippi and south of New York. I’ve fished a lot of waters – Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico. I’ve done a lot of trout fishing and West Virginia, by far, has the best trout water of any place I’ve ever been. That’s what we went to highlight at the event, make people aware that there’s really good trout fishing here in the state of West Virginia.”
The seminars will be led by three world-renowned fishing experts, two of whom are from West Virginia.
“We got Jack Bell. He’s a casting champion, and he’s actually from Morgantown,” Holt said. “Then we’ve got Joe Messenger. He is widely known as one of the best fly-tiers in the nation. He’s from Morgantown. He’s invented a couple patterns that are sold nationwide, worldwide, as well. We also have author Ed Engle coming, who is very well-known. His articles have been published in many publications, and he’s written many books.”
Other events include a spin-casting competition and fly tying race, both on Saturday.
Sunday, participants can travel to Elk Springs Resort in Monterville, for the one-fly competition.
Holt said there are several vendors signed up for the event, but he is still looking for more.
“We want vendors that have anything to do with the outdoors,” he said. “Fly fishermen don’t just need fly rods and waders. Anything you can possibly think of that an outdoorsman would need, we would like the vendors there. We want to offer people the opportunity to purchase quality goods at this event throughout the weekend.”
The lodging package offered by Snowshoe includes the registration price for the festival, as well as other opportunities to experience the resort.
“You get the opportunity to roam around the mountain all weekend – ride the lift down to the lake, row a boat around the lake,” Holt said. “It comes with a lot of other stuff than just the room. The registration into the festival is already paid for when you get a lodging package through Snowshoe, so we really want to push people to get your accommodations at Snowshoe where everything is going on.”
Trout Unlimited plans to make this an annual event and hopes it receives a good reception from area anglers.
“I think this is kind of a way to highlight the efforts that everybody puts into making the fisheries that we have, as well as it’s also kind of a membership drive. It lets people become aware of what we actually do, and they might become a member and help us in future projects. You never know when some father is going to bring his son to something like this and then you get a lifelong member of Trout Unlimited.”
For more information on the festival, visit www.wvtu.org/mountain-state-trout-festival.html
Suzanne Stewart may be contacted at email@example.com