Fly Fishers of Davis: Tying One On

Apr 27, 2018

It was difficult to say who enjoyed this event  the most: the Fly Fishers of Davis demonstrating how to tie flies, or the youngsters watching them.

The occasion: The traditional fly-tying demonstrations by the Fly Fishers of Davis in Briggs Hall, University of California, Davis, during the campuswide Picnic Day celebration.

The group promotes the art of fly fishing and engages in community education and conservation. Another aim is to protect the state's natural resources.

Or, as the Fly Fishers point out on their website: "A 501(c)(4) non-profit organization with 100 plus members that is dedicated to teaching people about fly fishing, swapping yarns about fishing, sponsoring fly fishing outings, conservation and generally enjoying the fine art of fly fishing."

The club usually meets at 7:30 p.m. on the last Tuesday of each month at Frances Harper Junior High School, 4000 Covell Blvd. That's subject to change when they hold their dinners, fundraisers, picnics and other functions.

What happens at the meetings? As the Fly Fishers point out:

  • A raffle of fly fishing items.
  • A guest speaker who usually narrates a PowerPoint presentation covering some aspect of fly fishing.
  • Occasional silent auctions and equipment swaps.
  • A library of videos that members can sign out for a one month period.
  • A table full of fly fishing club newsletters and magazines for browsing.
  • Updates on where to fish, club activities, outings and trout conservation projects.
  • Lots of BS (Back-Slapping) yarn-spinning, good fellowship (and womanship too).

And you know how some anglers are prone to telling whoppers about the one that got away? A fish so big that it boggles the imagination--and exceeds the length of outstretched arms? Not to worry. The Fly Fishers' rule (tongue in cheek): "Absolutely NO stretching of the truth is tolerated...EVER."

So, on Saturday, April 18, during the 104th annual UC Davis Picnic Day, we watched Fly Fisher member Dave Driscoll of Vacaville, a retired Solano County deputy district attorney, show Steven Mao, 7, of Davis, how to tie a fly.

Little Steven was so absorbed that he never noticed the photographer or heard the shutter lick.

When Driscoll finished the demonstration, he handed the fly--in a safe plastic container--to Steven to take home. That's what the Fly Fishers do. And why the Picnic Day Committee is so grateful for their time, talents, and generosity.

Steven's smile said it all.