Project Healing Waters

I would consider myself somewhat outdoorsy. I like to camp, backpack, canoe, and hike. But I hate fishing. Sitting on a boat or a river bank with a bobber, just waiting for the fish to bite is just completely boring. Enter fly fishing.

My uncle LOVES to fly fish. Why is it called fly fishing, you ask? (I honestly didn’t know until recently – oh well). It’s because the lures you use are called “flies.” You make them yourself, so the possibilities are almost endless in what you can come up with. They kinda look like bugs when you finish them.

My uncle’s love of fly fishing has spilled over into his involvement in Project Healing Waters, an organization that works with wounded warriors from all services. Their website says it better than I can: “Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing, Inc. is dedicated to the physical and emotional rehabilitation of disabled active military service personnel and veterans through fly fishing and fly tying education and outings.”

Remember how I said I hated fishing? Fly fishing is not your normal worm and bobber fishing. Well I haven’t done it yet, to most of the guys I’ve talked to, its more of an zen art form. It’s much more involved than regular fishing.

Today I attended my first meeting of the Fort Belvoir chapter of Project Healing Waters. And I would like to say that I successfully tied two flies. With the help of a great instructor, Mark, who was super patient with my fly-ignorant self. But I can start to see why the guys like to get together and tie flies. It’s kinda relaxing and it’s fun to create something useful.

I’m excited to be able to be a part of a great organization that help other vets. As a vet myself, I want to give back and help. This is a great outlet for that (even if I’ve never fly fished before in my life!)

P.S. All photos except for the close up of the green fly were taken on a different day, on a PHW trip to North Fork River. My mom took the majority of them for the PHW chapter. More photos can be seen at their Flickr site, of which all the photos are linked to. The close up green fly was one of the two I made today 🙂

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