Skip to content

Kids Say the Darndest Things Happy Father's Day


I started thinking about how an appreciation of the outdoors gets passed along from one generation to the next.  As we approach Father’s Day, I reached out to the children of some of our Guides to see what they learned from their fathers about life in general, about nature, and about fly fishing, specifically.  From seven years old to over thirty, there are some universal truths from these “kids.”


Although I am not a guide, I did ask my daughter, Jessica, what she learned from me about fly fishing.  She said, “’Let it drift!’ is my favorite piece of advice.  It’s patience and technique at the same time!”


Many of the Guides’ kids did talk about technique.


Jon Easdon’s seven year-old daughter, Madeline, told me that “Daddy loves (to be a fishing guide).  He never wants to stop.  He loves to teach me how to fly fish.  He tells me to cast slowly and smoothly.” 


madeline kiss
Evidently, Jon gave Madeline a lesson in showing her fish a little love, too. 


Madeline’s buddy, Abbey, started fishing with her dad, Justin Brenner, when she was five.  “He taught me how to cast, catch, handle a net, and how to tie flies!  I love every minute of being on the water with daddy.” Abbey’s mom, Lauren, says that fly fishing is their very special daddy-and-daughter time.


Abbey Brenner will be booking guide trips in about 10 years.


Cody Blessing says that some of his best times have been fishing with his dad, “The Fish Doctor,” Greg Blessing.  With trips to “his office in Elevenmile Canyon” or fishing at Rainbow Falls, Cody says “he literally taught me everything I know and then some.”  


Kevin Gossage had a great response – well, responses. He had trouble narrowing his memories with his dad, Steve, to one or two.   A memory his dad won’t let him forget   (it happened when Kevin was little) is when a fish broke Kevin off in Elevenmile Canyon.  Kevin was crying and said “we need fatter string, Dad!” 



“A short, good drift is better than a long, crappy one.”


Set the hook! You miss every fish you don’t set the hook on.”


            Steve’s fatherly advice to his son.



Same when it came to sharing what Kevin had learned from his dad – too many things to mention!  One of the best memories was “learning to cast in our backyard.  I don’t think there was ever a time where dad said ‘no’ to busting out the rods and teaching me to cast – haul and double haul.”  Kevin finished by saying “I cherish every time we go out and all of the memories we have shared on the water.”  



Jon Leinweber broadened the “lessons learned” from his dad, David, beyond fly fishing.  “One of the biggest things he told me when I was growing up is ‘moderation in all things.’  It always seemed such a small, nothing-sort of statement when I was a kid.  Being taught to keep moderation (and self-ownership) at the front of my mind has really saved me.”  


dave rachel alaska
Rachel Leinweber, David’s daughter, has reflected before on her fly fishing experiences with her father, and she says “Some of my most treasured memories have been with my dad, and honestly, I don’t even remember the fish.” 


Happy Father’s Day to the dads out there and to the kids who continue the legacy.  



Leave a Comment