On the fly: Cast for Recovery | AspenTimes.com

On the fly: Cast for Recovery

Scott Spooner
Special to The Aspen Times
Aspen, CO Colorado

BASALT – Breast cancer is one of those things that affects nearly each of us, as we all have had an aunt, co-worker, parent or even child diagnosed.

Casting for Recovery is an organization I have had the honor of working with here in Colorado; it also has other chapters in states where trout are found. The mission of CFR is providing healing and revitalizing fly-fishing retreats for women affected by breast cancer currently or previously.

Most retreats are held over a weekend, with fly-fishing instruction sprinkled into amazing emotional and physical support from a highly trained and dedicated staff. Between a few tears and a lot of laughs, participants learn how to cast, tie some knots and a little entemology. Healing can take many forms.

The final day, these participants are treated to a day of guided fishing on private water. The lucky gals are always champing at the bit to apply what they’ve learned.

Professional guides from all the best shops converge on the retreat and these women get to experience fly fishing at its finest. Shrieks of joy and “grip and grins” are par for the course, hugs are foregone conclusions.

These guides volunteer their time, as does nearly everyone involved. I can certainly say from personal experience that these are my favorite trips of the year, regardless of how many fish we catch. Getting a participant into a fish and watching the ensuing facial expression is all I need. And some trips it’s more about sitting and listening than fishing.

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Participants are chosen by a lottery, and any Colorado woman who is or was diagnosed with breast cancer is welcome to apply. CFR provided these retreats to 28 women in 2012, and we hope to have even more participants next year.

You can apply, volunteer, or donate at coloradocastingforrecovery@gmail.com or call 303-694-4557. Go to castingforrecovery.org/wordpress/cfr-colorado/ for more information. These retreats are funded solely through donations and annual Fish Tails and Cocktails fundraisers. We at Taylor Creek Flyshop hope you join us in supporting CFR.