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Trout Camp Curriculum

The Maine TU Trout Camp curriculum is designed to make every student successful. While covering subjects like water assessment, life cycles, invasive species and pollution, they'll be interspersed and completed within a fly-fishing environment, engaging students while they have fun and learn. Our 2018 camp schedule of activities will be available in the spring. Here's a description of the activities at our camp.


2018 Camp Schedule in PDF format


Activity Descriptions:

Camp Rules and Orientation:
The MTUTC director will introduce the staff followed by a review of the rules of conduct for the camp week with the students and parents. The camp week curriculum, meal hours, and campground layout will also be reviewed.


Getting Started:
Basic fly casting technique will be introduced and taught to the twelve students with L.L. Bean 8’ 6” Streamlight fly rods with 5 weight large arbor fly reels.


Equipment Check, Safety Discussion and Fly Fishing Etiquette:

Student fly fishing equipment will be checked and loaner fly fishing equipment will be assigned as needed for the students use during the camp week. Wader safety and fishing etiquette will be discussed and demonstrated on the shore and in the Kennebec River.


Knot Discussion and Tying:
Knot tying for fly fishing will be demonstrated and taught at the Kennebec Valley TU tent. Discussion and demonstrations of knots needed to tie the backing to the spool, the backing to the fly line, the leader to the fly line, the tippet to the leader and various other knots for tying flies to the tippet.


Fly Tying Parts 1, 2, 3:
These fly tying seminars will introduce and teach the students to tie wets, streamers, nymphs, and dry flies in a skills-oriented approach at the Main lodge. Special emphasis on tying flies that can be used by the students during the camp week will be included.


Embden IFW Rearing Station:

Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Rearing Station Manager will lead the students on a tour of the most modern trout rearing station in the state of Maine.


Fly Line Discussion and Practice of removal and renewal onto fly reel spool:
Students will be instructed on how to remove a fly line from a fly reel spool and how to tie on the new fly line to the backing and leader. This will be a hands on exercise.


Historical Distribution of Maine Native Fish:

Thorough presentation and discussion of the native and exotic fish of Maine from the ice age to the present.


Practical exercises on the water of various fly casting techniques:

MTUTC Staff will demonstrate and students will practice doing various practical fly casting exercises and techniques on the water at Evergreens Campground.


Jam Black Brook Project:

Former Maine TU Council Chair will do a presentation on the Georges River TU “Embrace A Stream” culvert project on Jam Black Brook a tributary of the Georges River in the town of Searsmont.


Conservation Planning with GIS - What’s in it for the trout?:

This presentation will focus on efforts to conserve land in northern Maine. A focus on existing conserved lands, including Baxter State Park, other state-owned lands, private conservation land, and conservation easements, and discussion of potential trout benefits of some proposed new projects, additional conservation easements and additional state land acquisitions.


Fly Fishing Knots:

Arbor to tippet knot tying with a proficiency test of the various knots tied by the students.


Kennebec Watershed:

Maine TU Trout Camp Director will do a presentation on the ongoing efforts to restore and enhance runs of the anadromous fish of Maine.


Show and Tell, Fly Fishing Knowledge:

Maine TU Trout camp staff will show and tell their hints, tips and suggestions on fly fishing that will be useful to the students during the camp week and with their future fly fishing adventures.



Fishery Biologist will present methods and techniques used in real-world stream habitat study, focusing on the use of D-Ring nets and kick seine nets. Aquatic life will be quantified and identified during this activity. “Hatch Guide for New England Streams” by Thomas Ames Jr. and identification keys will be used for insect identification.


LL Bean Boot Mobile:

The LL Bean Boot Mobile will visit Evergreens Campground for a tour of the vehicle followed by a discussion of LL Bean Inc. who has been a main supporter of the ME TU Trout Camp for the past 14 years.


Catch and Release Fishing Nets:
Demonstration on the making of a C&R fishing net.


Life Cycle of Trout:

Maine Region B IFW Biologist will teach the students the important aspects of the trout life cycle from egg to maturity on the Kennebec River.


Electro Fishing and Beach Seining:

UM Fishery Ecologist will beach seine with the students in the Kennebec River in the Solon stretch and also electro shock Alder Brook in Embden.


Streamside Table (SAPPI Inc.):

Streamside table demonstration to show how water flows on the land, road crossings at streams and brooks etc.


USFWS Biologist:

Presentation of USFWS projects in Maine and also a discussion and presentation of a baseline stream survey on the Kennebec River.


ME TU Council Talk:

Discussion of past and former Maine TU projects with former Council Chairs with a focus on Maine TU youth education opportunities and the role that students can participate at the local, state and national levels within Trout Unlimited.


Camp Fire Gatherings:

Weather permitting, each evening after fly fishing at the Solon stretch of the Kennebec River alongside Evergreens Campground the students will sit around the camp fire for one hour before going to bed to tell their fishing stories of what fish they caught but more importantly the story of the big one that got away!


After Lunch Activities

Some of the lunch periods provide an opportunity for additional activities for students. These will be arranged dynamically, based on student interest, weather conditions, etc. Activities would include fly tying, fly casting, aquatic insect identification, time to try-out different rods/reels, and other topics of interest.


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