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By Jon Rouse, PHW Fayetteville

Our wonderful annual outing was another great success!! The Fayetteville program conducted their annual overnight trip to the Mitchell River House that sits a hundred yards off the Mitchell River, just north of Greensboro, North Carolina this past March.

We call it The Bert.

It is named after a long-term participant/volunteer/donor from PHW Fayetteville, Bert Kinkead.

This is only our second year for this event, and it has become one of our most sought-after local outings.  This trip provided an opportunity for our participants to do some dry fly, nymph, and streamer fishing along with working on some Euro nymphing and Tenkara techniques.

The outing started off well with us catching mostly brown trout with one brook trout. We also caught a sucker, a creek chub, and a green sunfish that helped add two species to our annual fish list. This fishing was not nearly as productive as last year since we were considerably past the last stocking; however, it was still a great time. The communal meals were a great way to start and end our days and gave us opportunities to tell our fishing stories to each other.

The second morning of fishing was affected by an overnight rain that blew out the Mitchell to a moderate degree so some of our guys headed to Stone Mountain and did well, with several browns being caught. We had a unique opportunity at the end of our second day:

After dinner we finished the day by viewing the movie, Mending The Line. Only one of the group had seen it before.

The reactions wereHey! That is what we do!andYou never told us that this is a such good movie!

Yes, and yes.

The movie provided the starting point for some great discussions on how this program has affected all our participants and volunteers and was a great way to finish our second day at the Mitchell River House.

As we wrapped up this great outing, we all reflected on what a great overnight outing this is for our program. We put several items in place to help with that success, like the battle buddy rule, an emergency contact roster for all participants/volunteers, mandatory wading belts, a base camp sign out board, and mandatory safety whistles for all participants/volunteers. It works. We had a great location, too: thank you Mitchell River House – great people, pretty good food, and no mishaps.

PHW Fayetteville on the steps of the Mitchell River House

Once again, Thank You, Bert, for making this great annual event happen! See you all next year!