Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/478
Patrick Berry takes us into Fly Fishers International and the resources you can utilize for fishing and conservation. We discover where locally you can get involved in sustaining your fishing and your fishery.
We also find out which top national issues they are working on this year and the history of how it all started for Patrick and FFI. This is not just your ordinary fishing chat — it’s an inspiring journey of passion, dedication, and making a difference.
Fly Fishers International Show Notes with Patrick
03:00 – When it comes to conservation, names like Fly Fishers International and Trout Unlimited always come up. We’ve previously had Len Zickler on the show, and today we’re diving into an exciting update on FFI with Patrick Berry. But first, we hear about how Patrick got into fly fishing.
04:00 – Patrick’s earliest memories in life were of fish and fishing. Despite not having much growing up, he vividly recalls a camping trip with his family, where his father ingeniously crafted fishing rods out of sticks, strings, and safety pins as hooks while digging worms for bait.
08:20 – Patrick shares his journey into conservation work, which he describes as a common path for many fly fishers. He quotes the words of Lee Wulff, one of the founders of FFI, who famously said, “When you teach a person to fly fish, you have just created a conservationist.”
10:14 – After years of trout bumming after college, Patrick got a job in a fly shop with Jeff Currier. He says reading Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac inspired Patrick to pursue environmental science, focusing on freshwater ecology and fisheries. This marked the beginning of his remarkable conservation-focused career.
12:35 – After years in Montana, Patrick and his wife decided to return to Vermont, where he worked for the Vermont Natural Resources Council. He was later appointed head of Vermont’s Fish and Wildlife Department.
Fly Fishers International — Who Are They?
14:38 – Patrick Berry sees Fly Fishers International as an organization that is available to guide people on their fly fishing journey no matter what their skill level is, where they live, or what fish is their favorite to chase after.
Fly Fishers International started with a focus on conservation, education, and community in the 1960s, and they’ve stayed true to their roots to this day.
15:00 – Fly Fishers International’s most significant strength area is high-quality fly fishing education. The Casting Instructor Certification at FFI is considered a premier casting instructor program worldwide.
18:00 – Patrick shares his perspective on pressing issues today, such as climate change and more. According to Patrick, climate change movements sometimes fall short of providing information on how an average person can help make a difference.
35:40 – Patrick lets us in on FFI’s conservation focus for the upcoming years. Their main goal is to keep providing conservation grants at the local level and collaborate closely with partners to tackle big-picture conservation challenges head-on.
41:17 – We also touch on the significance of technology and the role of famous personalities in driving change.
46:17 – Since our upcoming event is centered around the Great Lakes, I couldn’t miss the opportunity to ask Patrick for his insights on the steelhead program in the region.
1:05:27 – Patrick is a music and podcast enthusiast, and he admits to having a dedicated playlist exclusively for The Avett Brothers’ songs. Additionally, Patrick is a big fan of the SmartLess Podcast, especially the episode featuring George Clooney.
Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/478