Ongoing Council and Chapter Projects

Northwest Youth Conservation & Fly Fishing Academy

Our Future Leaders in Conservation
Applications are now being accepted for the annual Northwest Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy to be held during the last full week of June.

The Academy is located on Hicks Lake at the Gwinwood Conference Grounds in Lacey, Washington. Its purpose is to educate youth about the importance of coldwater conservation and natural resource stewardship.

Twenty-four youths, ages 12 to 16, who show an interest in stewardship and fly fishing will be selected to attend. Acceptance will be based upon a written essay indicating a candidate’s desire to attend and a recommendation from his/her school science teacher or counselor. Students need not be experienced anglers. Application period is from January 1 to April 15 of each year. Cost, including meals and lodging, is $300. Fly fishing rods, reels, and fly tying equipment will be made available.

The Academy is modeled after the nationally acclaimed, award winning Pennsylvania Trout Unlimited Rivers Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp held annually in Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania.


  • Academy is coeducational ages 12 - 16.
  • Academic classes focus on conservation and natural resource stewardship.
  • Fly fishing classes include gear selection, fly casting, fly tying, streamside ethics and etiquette, knot tying, reading the water, and water safety.
  • Morning and evening fly fishing opportunities on scenic Hicks Lake and Deschutes River.
  • Hands-on experience with habitat enhancement project.
  • On-the-water aquatic invertebrate sampling activity.
  • Faculty and staff include wildlife resource professionals, noted northwest fly fishing and fly-tying professionals and enthusiasts, and Trout Unlimited volunteers.
  • Career discovery opportunities.
  • Hosted by Olympia Chapter Trout Unlimited, South Sound Fly Fishers and Puget Sound Fly Fishers.

Why a Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy?
While some of the best stewards of our aquatic resources are anglers, the last decade has seen a decrease in the number of people, primarily youth, becoming involved in the sport of fishing. Fewer people fishing might well imply a smaller number of advocates and less political influence when it comes to environmental and conservation concerns.

Recognizing the critical need for a new generation of educated, concerned, and dedicated stewards of our natural resources, delegates to the July 2000 Trout Unlimited National Convention adopted an initiative to promote youth natural resource stewardship education nationwide. In response to the initiative the Washington Council Trout Unlimited established the Northwest Youth Conservation and Fly Fishing Academy.

The sport of fly fishing is an ideal vehicle for educating youth about stewardship and to ascertain a more positive future for our coldwater resources. It is an activity that can immerse one in nature and bring about a passion for the care and respect of all our natural resources.

Upon completion of the Academy, students will have gained an understanding, appreciation, and awareness of Washington's coldwater resources and habitat of trout and salmonids. In addition, they will have developed essential fly fishing skills, knowledge of outdoor ethics, and an awareness of sport fishing opportunities in Washington State. The Academy experience will truly prepare its participants to become the next generation of resource stewards and future leaders in conservation.

For application or further information contact:
Mike Clancy
Telephone: (360) 753-1259

Jim Brosio

Telephone: (360) 943-9947
E-mail address -

Tom Van Gelder

Telephone: (253) 261-6129

Visit our web site -


Edmonds - Laebugten Salmon Chapter No. 101
We Raise about 125,000 Coho in our hatchery to be out-planted into local streams with the help of Edmonds area students, and maintain a net-pen at the Edmonds pier with 30,000 yearling Coho for imprinting and release.

Grays Harbor, Chapter No. 111
Working with the Columbia-Pacific Resource Conservation and Development District we developed an old gravel pit on the Chehalis River, into a truly amazing scenic escape for nature lovers with disabilities. who can catch salmon and sturgeon from a wheelchair. With two fishing shacks and piers along 1⁄2 mile of river access, 1.7 miles of level trail with a paved path that circles the32 acre lake, restrooms, showers and camping facilities and a boat launch, life is easy despite the secluded natural setting located on 152 acres of donated land. Called Friends Landing, it has some of the last of the state?s remaining old growth timber. Washington Watchable Wildlife has designated Friends Landing a natural wildlife scenic area. You can find Friends Landing 35 miles west of Olympia and 12 east of Aberdeen, Washington.

Whatcom County, Chapter No. 178
Our chapter built a pond in the early 1990's to encourage Advanced Natural Resources class from Mount Baker High School to feed fishes, to check weights, to test water quality, and to manage the hatchery with TU members from Whatcom County. Baker fisheries run the hatchery program. They raise the steelhead in hope that they will return to spawn.

Tacoma Chapter, No 146
The Chapter designed and built a portable fishing pond with grants from the council and the Muckleshoot Tribe to offer fishing experiences to children that may have never had an opportunity. We have had as many as 3000 children a year attend events sponsored by various organizations throughout Western Washington. We also work with the Washington Military District to protect Murray Creek, one of the last available spawning areas for American Lake Cutthroat.

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 Youth Conservation
2008 Youth Conservation
& Fly Fishing Academy.