Carihi student Seth Bisson and the other members of the Carihi Fly Fishing Club tying up their knots for Czech nymphing recently in preparation for the National Fly Fishing Championship being held next month in Maple Ridge. The students are currently in fundraising mode to purchase competitive equipment. Photo contributed

Carihi fly fishers earn invite to National Championship

10 students will travel to Maple Ridge next month, but they need your help to get there

Last year it was sort of a pilot project to see if it would gain enough interest to make it into a full program.

But with 10 of the students in the Carihi Fly Fishing program headed to the National Fly Fishing Championship in Maple Ridge, B.C. next month, it’s safe to say things are going well.

“It has grown from one class offered as a local elective, into two courses now,” says Carihi teacher and program coordinator Nic Pisterzi. “Each targets a different species of fish on Vancouver Island, including salmon and trout. Within this is the development of skills – casting, knots, flies – and deep learning, along with the importance of conservation and resource management.”

Many members of the community have come to share their knowledge with the group, Pisterzi says, ranging from professional fishing guides to conservation officers, to biologists, to community members and more, which he feels goes a long way in showing the kids the community is supportive in what they’re trying to do.

And now they’ve been recognized nationally, as well.

When Todd Oishi – who organizes the national competition and found out about the club through Pisterzi’s dedication to Facebook and Instagram to spread the word about the kids’ endeavours – reached out to Pisterzi by email asking if he’d be interested in sending a team to the event, he couldn’t wait to tell the students.

The competition is a three day event where students will catch and release as many fish as they can in the time they’re permitted at two river venues and two lake venues. The competition is based on a point system determining the total amount – as well as the size – of fish caught. The top ten fishers from the nationals will then be invited to attend the 2019 World Fly Fishing Championships in Tasmania.

But Pisterzi is just hoping the kids have some fun and keep learning along the way.

“I’m hoping that since it’s the first year we’ve done this, and it’s the first year Carihi has formed a competitive team, that we simply do our best and continue learning how to catch fish on a fly,” he says, but adds they are taking the opportunity seriously, going so far as to bring in a former Canadian National Champion from Nanaimo to train with and learn the rules of the competition.

RELATED: Campbell River high school to teach the majesty of nature through fishing

RELATED: Carihi fly fishing class/club raising money for fellow Tyee with brain cancer

While the rules of the competition are designed to ensure a level playing field for all of those who participate, the two teams heading to the event do need to fundraise to purchase the competitive gear and equipment needed, Pisterzi says.

As such, they are are hosting a fundraising event on April 4, in partnership with the International Fly Fishing Film Festival (IF4).

This is a special cinema event of short vignettes of pro fly fishers, which is shown around the world. Tickets are being sold for $20 each and can be purchased online at flyfilmfest.com, at Carihi, Tyee Marine, or River Sportsman.

“We also plan on giving away prizes and hosting raffles to help raise money for the gear, as well as the travel costs and lodging for the championship,” Pisterzi says.

If anyone is interested in donating or sponsoring this unique youth fly fishing team, Pisterzi says, they can contact him directly at nicolas.pisterzi@sd72.bc.ca or by calling the school at 250-286-6282. You can also reach out to the club through their Facebook page (@carihiflyfishing) or Instagram feed (@carihi_fly–fishing).

“These youth are so passionate that they’re in the process of fundraising thousands of dollars through events, bottle drives, and corporate sponsors,” Pisterzi says. “It costs thousands to purchase the proper competitive gear which ties to the competition standards.

“If there are members in the community that are willing to help donate to the cause, we welcome it.”



miked@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Victoria church displays memorial tapestry for those lost to opioid crisis

Christ Church Cathedral hosts talks on opioid crisis on June 26 and July 3

Island beekeeper wants more responsible pesticide use

Two pesticide events in two months has beekeeper asking Islanders to take care

Tackling ‘one fear after another:’ ‘Spirit Orca’ swimmers ready for next challenge

Vancouver Island swimmers with disabilities preparing for ocean relay in Great Bear Rainforest

Asian business owners face stereotyping

Advocate: contrary to the ill-informed rhetoric, foreign investors saving Island businesses

What’s bugging you? Exterminator talks Island pest control

Dealing with pests in the home this summer and beyond

VIDEO: Father and son unveil reconciliation pole in B.C. on Indigenous Peoples Day

MP Jody Wilson-Raybould, a member of the We Wai Kai Nation on Vancouver Island, was at the event

Wildfire burning in coastal forest

A fire beside the Sea to Sky Highway is burning up a steep slope

PHOTOS: Event marks one year since soccer team rescued from Thai cave

Nine players and coach took part in marathon and bike event to help improve conditions at cave

Rock climber dies after fall at Stawamus Chief in Squamish

The man had fallen about 30 metres while climbing in the Grand Wall area

Five B.C. students taken to hospital after playing with vaping device

School district said students were taken to hospital ‘out of an abundance of caution’

Being a pot dealer is not what it used to be

Sunday Big Read: the business of selling marijuana in B.C. is a slow bureaucratic slog

VIDEO: Two more pride flags have been stolen from Langley woman

Lisa Ebenal was “angry” and “fed up” after the latest theft. Then people started showing suppport

B.C. couple who has raised 58 children turns to community amid cancer diagnosis

Family who raised, fostered and adopted many kids hoping to gain some precious together time to fight cancer

Canucks acquire forward J.T. Miller from Lightning

J.T. Miller, 26, had 13 goals and 34 assists for the Lightning last season

Most Read