Freelance travel writer who loves all things travel and tourism.
Published November 16th 2011
If you are looking for a fantastic activity to do with a difference, look no further than the Goulburn Valley Fly Fishing Centre. Located in Thornton, the Goulburn Valley Fly Fishing Centre conduct fly fishing lessons and guiding throughout the entire High Country region. We were lucky enough to experience this wonderful activity in the beautiful Jamieson Valley just outside of Mansfield.
We had a group of two adults and four children, with the children ranging in age from 4 to 12 years. All six of us were complete newcomers to fly fishing but what we lacked in experience, we certainly made up for in enthusiasm. We met our amazing guide, Werner, on the banks of the picturesque Jamieson River. Given our group dynamics, Werner put together a 2 hour session that entertained both children and adults alike. He did such a great job tailoring the experience to our specific needs that the two hours slipped by all too quickly and we were totally captivated for the entire session.
Werner began our lesson with an informative nature walk along the Jamieson River, explaining the habits of the trout we were hoping to catch. He then showed us how to find the aquatic insects that the trout like to feed on and explained to us the particular type of food the trout were feeding on at the moment. Later, this would dictate the type of fly we would use to hopefully catch the fish. Werner has an exhaustive amount of knowledge on these subjects and the children were enthralled with his insect stories.
After our introduction to the trout habitat, it was time to practise casting. Werner showed us the basics then let us all have a turn, coaching us as we went. His attentive and expert instruction made us feel like we had mastered the art of fly fishing instantly.
Following our casting lesson, Werner took us through the fine art of fly tying. He made two flys for us that had an uncanny resemblance to the insects he was creating. He willingly shared his extensive collection of flys with our group, explaining the virtues of each one.
We were all eager to put our new casting skills to use with a real fly so it was back to the river to put into practice everything Werner had just taught us. With the two older children casting in earnest, Werner taught the younger children how to catch the aquatic bugs, much to their delight!
Unfortunately, the trout remained elusive on this day but we didn't mind because we had a fantastic time learning all about the craft of fly fishing. Werner made our day truly special – he was generous with his time and knowledge, patient with the children (and the adults) and his passion for his profession was evident.
This is a great activity to do with your family, your friends or just with your guide. There is an art to fly fishing but there is no one better to coach you in this field than the Goulburn Valley Fly Fishing Centre.