Colorado’s breathtaking outdoors adventures are often out of reach for disabled active-duty military and veterans.
Here’s where Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing comes in, with a 200-strong volunteer corps of anglers helping make it happen for them.
During these colder months, the fishing fans are helped with dexterity as they tie their own flies, learning all about Wooly Buggers, the Adams and Elk Hair Caddis.
Then it’s all about basic fly-fishing and casting before the veterans and disabled active-duty fill their tackle boxes and head for the streams with the volunteers for 45 one-day and multiday fishing trips on the water.
Says PHWFF, “Our participants heal and reconnect with their community and our amazing outdoors.”
Sponsors, donors and local businesses are the nonprofit’s support system, with the annual Fly Fishing Film Tour the major fundraiser. On Feb. 1, the Stargazers Theatre parking lot was packed with trucks, Jeeps and SUVs arriving for the sold-out 2020 film event.
Top sponsors were Angler’s Covey, Trout Unlimited and Royal Gorge Anglers. Also, The Lost Dutchman, Maytag Ranch, The Faricy Boys and Rainbow Falls Mountain Trout among others.
A big competition was underway during the popular raffle and auction of top-line outdoor gear, with offerings filling the front of the stage. Donors included restaurants, Bighorn Angler, Mountain Equipment Recyclers, Pikes Peak Harley, South Platte and Taos Fly Shops, Tumbling Trout & Bison Creek Lodge and so many others that a listing filled a full page.
For more about participating in, volunteering for and donating to Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, go to phwffcoloradosprings.org