Our first week of summer camps at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum kicked off with a splash as 12 campers got to fish, swim, and cast their way through an exciting week of fishing adventures! Monday consisted of introduction to the site and each other, games, and then making our own fishing poles and using them to fish in North Harbor here at the museum. The kids fully embraced this activity and were super excited to catch a combined total of 27 fish on their first day with every child catching at least one. This was an awesome way to start the week!
On Tuesday we used some of the gear from Vermont Fish and Wildlife’s “Let’s Go Fishing Program” in order to introduce the kids to different casting techniques. Later in the day we went down to the harbor again and it was entertaining to see that some of the kids were more excited about using their homemade poles than the poles we had at the museum. The weather was not super cooperative, but the kids had a great attitude and marched all over the museum with us in spite of the rain.
Wednesday was a busy day for the kids with a fly-fishing workshop, courtesy of Vermont Fish and Wildlife, in the morning, and a field trip to the Fish Hatchery in Salisbury in the afternoon. The kids did very well tying their own flies and asked a ton of great questions at the hatchery. They even got to practice casting with fly fishing poles, some of which were two or three times longer than the kids wielding them!
Thursday was an all-out fishing day with a trip to the basin harbor dock in the morning and a trip to our dock in the afternoon. More swimming than fishing took place in the afternoon, which probably scared most of the fish away, but we had a great time anyway. The final day of camp was spent at the dock by the Lake Champlain Memorial Lighthouse in Crown Point, NY-many of the kids listed this trip as the highlight of their week. They got to fish and then climb the lighthouse which was very fun for all of them.
We were so excited that the kids caught so many fish and had a wonderful week at camp! As a staff we were proud to teach the kids about all the different fish in Lake Champlain and to instruct them about the importance of catch and release and species conservation so that they can continue fishing for years to come. Fishing camp was a great kickoff to our summer of camps and I’m excited to see what the following weeks will bring!