I have been a fly fisherman for over 50 years; I have been fishing Putah Creek since the 1990’s during which I’ve witnessed many changes in the stream and the trout fishery. I joined Putah Creek Trout during its first year (2007) when it was still just a small group of concerned fishermen and women hoping to bring the Creek back to its Trophy Trout status. In 2009 the group achieved 501(c)3 nonprofit status and I became Chairman of the Board of Directors in 2010. With a very talented and supportive Board, numerous volunteers, and funding from fly fishing clubs and others we have accomplished several milestones including Wild Trophy Trout designation and establishment of restoration programs designed to improve the creek ecosystem, the fishery, and provide better access for recreational users of this valuable natural resource.
As Chairman, I have been more in the role of a Director, coordinating activities, establishing contacts and building stakeholder relationships, working with the Board and volunteers. It has been an interesting and challenging 10 years, thousands of hours of volunteering on my own part, but the results of everyones efforts are obvious: a healthy fishery providing pleasure to many. The value to the public will continue to grow.
I have many wonderful memories from my long association with the creek: my first 20”+ that bolted downstream in heavy current and snapped my 5X tippet in an instant, the pods of prespawners stacking up in runs before heading out to the bed areas, the Osprey/Peregrine tussle over a fish the Osprey had caught. But the best are of the volunteer events, working side by side with you gathering data, making changes to benefit our trout. I expect to add many more of these memories to my collection.