Friday, October 20, 2023 at 1:00 PM CDT
Sunday, October 22, 2023 at 1:00 PM CDT

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Driftless Vacation Rentals 
1230 Quandahl Rd
Decorah, IA 52101

Driving Directions 


Rose Danaher 
Iowa DNR 

Beyond BOW: Decorah on the Fly


Ever thought about catching your own trout for dinner? Want to pick up skills like casting and cooking your catch? Maybe you like the idea of renewing yourself by spending time near clean, flowing water? You can do all this and more on the beautiful trout streams of Decorah, IA - during the height of fall colors, in the company of other women!

Decorah is nestled in the Upper Iowa River Valley of Northeast Iowa in the heart of the Driftless Area. This community is a destination for travelers, foodies, and outdoor enthusiasts. Home to stunning limestone bluffs, a winding scenic byway and three of the top five trout streams in Iowa, you're sure to find yourself in this outdoor oasis. 

Arrive on Friday afternoon for introductions and to brush up on your skills. Participants will spend their time at 3 stations: casting, fly tying and reading a stream to prepare for a weekend on the water. A private tour of Iowa DNR's Chuck Gipp Decorah Fish Hatchery will follow.

You'll then check into the stunning cabins situated on South Bear Creek - these are nestled into the woods and boast full kitchens, fire rings, expansive decks and shared lodging. Don't get too comfortable, yet - the Decorah Area Chamber has planned an evening on the town! The downtown business showcase will feature 3 local recreation businesses, stories of conservation, fishing and more. Wild game charcuterie and mocktails will be provided. The night will conclude around the fire pit at the cabins, for star gazing and camaraderie.

Saturday will be spent on the water - participants will be divided into pairs and pursue trout with their assigned guides. A boxed lunch will be provided. Saturday night, stories will be told! We'll host a social dinner in Decorah where you'll share your adventures of the day and meet other leaders in conservation. Sunday morning you'll rendezvous with your guides and head back out to the water. Tired and satisfied, we'll wrap up around noon.

This is an active, skills-based event for participants 18+. Come prepared to get dirty and dress for the variable fall weather. Some of the best trout waters require a hike through varying terrain. All participants are required to purchase an Iowa fishing license and trout stamp prior to attending. Attendees should bring their own waders or hip boots. Muck boots are an option, but if you go that route, be prepared to get wet!

Grab a friend and register as space is limited!  No experience necessary and equipment is provided, but if you have your own stuff, please bring it! Cost includes food, communal lodging on the banks of South Bear Creek in Eagle's Nest Cabin and The Lodge, and equipment. The cost for this program is $250 for a single bed and $225 for a shared (full or queen) bed.

The Eagle_s Nest The Lodge
The Eagle's Nest and The Lodge on the banks of the South Bear Creek.

Tentative Agenda:

A final agenda will be sent out to all participants prior to the event.

Friday, October 20, 2023
1-4pm: Registration & Skills Stations
Fly Tying
Casting Lessons
Reading A Stream
Hatchery Tour

4-5:30pm: Check into Cabins

6-8pm: Downtown Decorah Tour
Decorah Hatchery
Big Driftless
Rod & Rivet

9pm: Pudgie Pies and stargazing at the campfire

Saturday, October 21, 2023
7-8am: Breakfast at the Cabins

8am-4pm: Fly fish, box lunch on the bank, more fishing!

4-5:30pm: Refresh at the Cabins

6pm: Evening social/program - TBD

Sunday, October 22, 2023
7-8am: Breakfast at the Cabins

8-11:30am: On the water fly fishing

Noon: Participants depart 


Please note, there is a 12 person minimum. If 12 people are not registered by October 6, 2023, the event will be cancelled and full refunds provided.

Cancellation deadline is October 6, 2023. Cancellations on or before October 6, 2023 will receive a refund minus $25 processing fee. Registrants who do not attend and who do not cancel by October 6, 2023 will be assessed the full program fee. You may send a substitute in your place.

Participants understand that photographs may be taken during the session and may be used in future promotion of the program.