Chapter Projects and Activities
Angling Arts Education
Our angling arts education classes provide participants introductory and intermediate fly fishing skills, fly tying lessons, and rod building classes taught by experienced members of the ENCTU. The classes are perfect for the beginner fisherman desiring to learn the sport or experienced anglers seeking to brush up their skills. Angling arts education classes begin in April each year and are held in Charleston and in Hurricane.
Brown Trout Fingerling Stockings
Each year, the ENCTU stocks thousands of brown trout fingerlings in streams across central and southern West Virginia. Many times these brown trout fingerlings are stocked by hand using buckets and often by backpack into areas unreachable by vehicle. Since the late 1970's, the ENCTU has stocked 1,350,000 trout.
Limestone Fines Placements
Beginning in 2004, this program treats three streams: two had no brook trout and one had a marginal population due to lost buffering capacity of soil from acid rainfall. All three are doing better with brook trout returning and thriving in the streams. The “Bucket Brigade” volunteers over the last four years, have carried more than 31.5 tons of limestone fines over 1⁄4 mile, and placed them into an unnamed tributary of the Middle Fork of the Williams River.
Monthly Trout Unlimited Meetings
The ENCTU meets at 7:00 PM on the second Tuesday of every month, September through May. Meetings are held at the South Charleston Community Center - 601 Jefferson Rd, South Charleston, WV 25303. (No meetings are held in June, July, or August)
Project Healing Waters
Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. is dedicated to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active military service personnel and disabled veterans through fly fishing and associated activities including education and outings.
Save Our Streams
The mission of Save Our Streams is to promote the preservation and restoration of our state's waters by providing an understanding of their ecological integrity. The program uses a bio-survey approach to stream study, which includes the collection of data and an assessment of the stream's physiochemical conditions.
These outings provide an opportunity for members to learn about the quality and characteristics of a stream. Participants examine insects, habitat, and chemistry of the stream. Learning about the insects in this stream will provide an understanding of what flies to fish with to imitate them.
Our member, Max Robertson, has developed a voluntary catch and release signage program with private land owners on several stocked streams. By posting the signs, land owners encourage catch and release when fishing on their property. We will continue to add new property owners and replace lost signs.
Stream Clean Ups
A central part of the ENCTU's mission is create clean fisheries in West Virginia. The chapter engages in several stream clean up projects every year. The annual Elkhorn Clean Up, originally organized by Ernie Nester, benefits one of the best reproducing rainbow and brown trout streams in one of the worst economically depressed counties (McDowell). The ENCTU cleans over 1⁄2 mile of Elkhorn Creek each year with the assistance of eighty members of various state and out of state chapters, WVDNR, and some local watershed members.
Trout in the Classroom
The Trout in the Classroom program has grown quickly since it began with one school in 2007. Currently, twenty three schools are participating including twenty one ENCTU members and forty-six teachers. It is estimated that 7,500 students, parents, and others have been impacted by this program.
West Virginia Hunting & Fishing Show
The Ernie Nester Chapter of Trout Unlimited (ENCTU) participates each year in the West Virginia Hunting and Fishing Show in Charleston. Our presence at the show provides us an opportunity to connect with Trout Unlimited members and recruit new members to the organization.