Shyanne Orvis: Ladies On The Fly

Shyanne Orvis: Ladies On The Fly

I was born in Flint, Michigan. When I was 12, I moved out and lived with numerous family/friends for the remainder of my childhood. I lived in multiple cities throughout Michigan and then lived with a family in Colorado.

That’s when I discovered my love for this beautiful state. After high-school, I moved back to

Colorado and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. This place is special.

Who taught you how to fly fish?

The majority of my family is obsessed with fishing but few of them actually Fly-fish. My grandfather was the only one, and he used to build his own rods.

After spending years of conventional spin fishing, I decided to try something else. I had a few friends in high-school, that introduce me to the sport but it wasn’t until I moved to Colorado that I really got to explore and find my love for it. After all, it runs in the family right?

What is a very fond memory you have when just learning how to fish?

After only fishing a handful of times, I decided to take a road trip with my friend’s dog all over Colorado.

I wasn’t allowed to have a dog, so I borrowed my friend’s.

With pretty much zero knowledge on any of the rivers I was fishing I studied fly shop fishing reports, but not really understanding what I was reading, which resulted in being skunked on 4/5 of the rivers. But, hey, it was one of the best learning experiences, not just for fly-fishing but also about myself.

Why did you organize Ladies on the Fly?

Reflecting on my own personal experience when starting fly-fishing, I can recall how intimidating it was getting into the sport. When you walk into a fly shop and there are 6 guys, gawking like they’ve never seen a girl before. The last thing you want to ask is how to tie your fly on-to your line.

I felt I was in a position to help other women who may have felt the same way. To my knowledge, there weren’t any events that were women-specific in my area that focused on the basics of fly-fishing. I wanted to create an event that allowed for women to feel more comfortable asking questions.

So, I set out to build a community of inspiring female anglers, that could support and encourage each other.

With the help of some incredible female anglers and non-profit organizations in my community, I was able to create an event to help inspire and encourage more females to try fly-fishing.

This past August, the Women’s Fly-Fishing event that I hosted was called “Ladies On The Fly”. The event provided a well-rounded introductory of the basics that are necessary for fishing. We offered numerous stations numerous stations that the women could freely roam.

This allowed for them to focus on whatever station they really wanted to improve on or get a feel for them all. There was the Entomology Station that The Roaring Fork Conservancy and volunteers did an absolutely incredible job with.

The Casting Station where Hutch Hutchinson (Certified Casting Instructor) and volunteers were able to help women with an intro to Casting or Double-Hauling.

Demonstration on Knots and Setting up your Fly-Rod, so women could learn the basics of setting up their own rods when heading to the river. The last station which was Fishing a private section on the Frying Pan River, where attendees were able to apply the information they learned from the other stations, Tying on Flies, Casting, Reading the water, Mending and Catching fish!

How many people attended?

I was humbled by the number of women and children who were so passionate and excited to learn to fly-fish and I’m beyond ecstatic to see the huge strides that other female anglers and companies are taking to introduce females to this sport.

There were over 25 women who attended, 3-4 young girls and some husbands that even stopped by to show support. I also had to have a few additional men volunteers because there weren’t enough female anglers that could help out!

As a female fly-fishing guide in Basalt, Colorado and being one of the few women in a male-dominated sport, I understand how intimidating it can be to get into fly-fishing. It’s not an easy sport to learn, and we lack the resources that make it more accessible and approachable for women.

It makes my heart so happy to see kids so excited and passionate to learn how to fish.

What’s next?

2017 was an incredible year filled with humbling opportunities. I can only imagine that 2018 will be even better.

Some of my aspirations for this year is to continue with “Ladies On The Fly” and host monthly get-togethers – drinking wine and tying flies with the female anglers in my community. I also plan on getting more involved with kids focused fly-fishing events and organizations. It’s crucial for us to pass on our love for fly-fishing and conservation, so we know the future of this sport is in good hands.

If you’d like to host an event, you can reach out to me or look online at Orvis’ campaign “50/50 On The Water” for tips on hosting a Women’s Fly-Fishing Event. Also tag #LadiesOnTheFly so we can continue to empower each other.

Share this post

Join Waitlist We will inform you when the product arrives in stock. Please leave your valid email address below.