On the Fly: Fly-tying smackdown in Basalt | AspenTimes.com

On the Fly: Fly-tying smackdown in Basalt

Last year’s Iron Fly Competition attracted plenty of contestants to Basalt.
Courtesy of Tom Skutely/RFVFFC

If You go ...

What: Iron Fly Competition

When: Saturday, Feb. 2; kids division at 4 p.m., adult division at 6:30 p.m.

Where: The Tipsy Trout (formerly Riverside Grill) 181 Basalt Center Circle

The X Games of local fly-tying is happening tonight!

The Roaring Fork Valley Fly Fishing Club and the Roaring Fork Conservancy are hosting the fourth annual Iron Fly Competition in Basalt, next door to Taylor Creek Fly Shop at the Tipsy Trout, starting at 4 p.m. This is the fishing club’s most popular event of the year, with a youth division starting at 4 p.m. and the adults getting started around 6:30 p.m. Participants should try to preregister for both divisions at http://www.roaringfork.org/events, and tyers must bring their own vise and tools.

There is a $5 admission at the door for spectators and a $20 fee for adult participants. Children 16 and younger participate for free, and all proceeds go to funding the RFVFFC’s local youth and veteran outreach programs throughout the year. Fly-tyers from across the valley will be showcasing their skills, and be ready for a few head-scratching curve balls thrown in, as well. Participants might be asked to use mystery ingredients, their non-dominant hand, or perhaps tie a fly with a blindfold on!

Tyers are organized into heats, and judges pass their offerings around to decide the winners of each round. They then move up to compete in the final rounds. Winners get bragging rights for the year and make out like bandits with prizes from Orvis, Umpqua, local artists and more. Many talented tyers call the Roaring Fork Valley home; Basalt is Mecca for fly-fishers!

This also is your chance to meet the new owners and chef of the Tipsy Trout. Andy Hopp, Claire Clarke and chef Matt LeBlanc have breathed new life (and a great new menu) into this ever-popular location and are proud to donate their perfect venue as well as pizzas for the youth division and appetizers for the big kids. This is one of the most fun winter nights for local anglers — swing by to show your support, enjoy an adult beverage and root for your favorite fly-tyer!

This column is provided by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374.

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