2022 Rivers Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp

Screen Shot 2022 02 17 at 93420 AM For almost 30 years Cumberland Valley TU has sponsored the Rivers Conservation and Fly Fishing Youth Camp. It is a wonderful program supported by many expert volunteers from the fly fishing community for teens to gain a wide range of knowledge about entomology, wetlands, ecology, hydrogeology, aquatic invertebrates, hydrology, watersheds, the biology of pollution, trout behavior and stream restoration. There are many sessions that take place on the stream or outside during the week.

The instructors in the program often include leading experts including many from state agencies like the PFBC, DEP and DCNR. The Pennsylvania Council of Trout Unlimited sponsors the program with help from the Cumberland Valley TU.

Every morning and evening the participants are given the opportunity to fly fish the catch and release section of Yellow Breeches where they stay for the week. June on the Yellow Breeches is an excellent time to be fishing. Lessons in casting, knot tying, fly tying and more are also part of the curriculum.

  • Camp is held annually on the third Sunday in June, starting at noon running to ~2:00 pm on the following Friday.
  • All activities will take place on or near the property of Messiah University in Grantham, Pennsylvania. Students will have dorm lodging, meals, and class time at Messiah.
  • The majority of the time at camp will be spent in a classroom setting, but many sessions will also take place on the stream or outside. The curriculum covers various topics in conservation and fly fishing.
  • Students are provided with 3 meals per day plus an evening snack. Meals are buffet style with several entrée selections available.
  • Some classes are held in the evenings after fishing.
  • Campers receive all course materials, a camp tee shirt, hat, and flies
  • There are 10 fishing sessions on the Yellow Breeches held prior to breakfast and after dinner each day.
  • Classes are taught by more than 25 different instructors, all experts in their field.
  • Fly fishing equipment is available for loan if needed.
  • In addition to classroom time, the students all participate in constructing a stream habitat improvement project
  • The Leon Chandler Award is presented at graduation to the current student who most displays leadership qualities in the field of conservation.
  • The total cost of the camp is $550 which includes tuition, room and board.

This year the program will run from June 19-24, 2022. There are different ways that financial support is provided and there are several openings still available. The deadline for the early acceptance period is February 28, 2022.

Truly an exciting opportunity to learn more about conservation and enjoy fly fishing as well. To find out more please go to the website here where they also provide applications. More details can be found on the website and apply here.
This is an excellent program for youth to learn about stream ecology. The Hokendauqua Chapter of TU has been sponsoring youth for years. We have the interested youth attend a membership meeting to get to know them a little better. Then in the Fall have them return back and tell us about their experience. I have never heard from any participant that they didn't enjoy it. Parents would tell me months after the camp that their child still talks about it. I would highly recommend Chapters to sponsor a youth to attend the RCFFYC annually.