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Lessons & Events

Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Instruction is offered year round at Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters - and there is usually an event or two right around the corner scheduled at the shop....

If you have an interest in learning fly fishing or fly casting or you want to improve upon the skills you already possess, the gifted professional instructors at our shop can help. We offer classes and clinics during the spring and summer months, and private instruction is available all year long.

If your interest lies in learning the art of fly tying, we offer Introductory and Intermediate level classes in the fall and winter.

Scroll down to view current 2014/2015 schedule


Private Lessons - Available year round.

Allow the instructors at Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters custom tailor a private lesson for you. We conduct casting lessons on North Pond in Lincoln Park. Our seasoned instructors can assist with all skill levels from beginner to advanced. Most "intermediate" anglers suffer from the same limitations and common mistakes. A one hour lesson can tweak your cast and make your next day on the water more enjoyable. We can teach hauling and basic spey/switch casting as well. All equipment provided.

Please call the shop to schedule 312.944.3474

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Introduction To Fly Tying - January 7th, 14th and 21st, 2015 6:30-8:30 pm 3 consecutive Wednesday Evenings

Learn the Art of Fly Tying!

Join instructor, Paul Melchior for this comprehensive three-session class designed to introduce the fundamentals of fly tying.

In 3 classes you'll learn to tie the three major categories of flies: streamers, nymphs and dry flies. No experience necessary.

Call 312-944-3474 to reserve your spot.

This 3 evening session will get you started in the entertaining and infinitely productive art of fly tying- just in time for winter and the long dark days ahead!

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IntermediateFly Tying Class: Streamers - ChiFly Staff Favorites - Jan 8th Thursday 7:00 - 9:00 PM

IntermediateFly Tying Class: Streamers - ChiFly Staff Favorites For the first time ever!!! Each of the ChiFly tying instructional team will present a favorite streamer... Flies will be kept a closely guarded secret until the night of the class.

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Seminar: Understanding Switch & Spey - Jan 13th Tuesday 6:30 - 8:00 PM

The options for Spey & Switch equipment can seem overwhelming. From Traditional to Scandi to Skagit we will break down the rigging differences and line choices to help you better understand how to make an effective selection. THIS IS NOT A FLY TYING CLASS. Space is limited to 8 students. $30 per student.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Contemporary Steelhead Flies - Tuesday, Jan 20th 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Swinging is all the rage these days. Come learn popular streamer patterns for Great Lakes Steelhead. We will discuss size, color, movement, profile, and weight variables as we construct 2 effective patterns. Instructor: Jon Uhlenhop

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Classic Dry Flies - Jan 27th Tuesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Join Fly Tying guru Paul Melchior for this peek into the past and the roots of modern fly design. You will tie a few of the most popular Catskill-style flies concentrating on materials selection & proportion.

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Introduction To Fly Tying - Jan 29th, Feb 5th, Feb 12th - 3 consecutive Thursday evenings

Learn the Art of Fly Tying!

Join instructor, Paul Melchior for this comprehensive three-session class designed to introduce the fundamentals of fly tying.

In 3 classes you'll learn to tie the three major categories of flies: streamers, nymphs and dry flies. No experience necessary.

Call 312-944-3474 to reserve your spot.

This 3 evening session will get you started in the entertaining and infinitely productive art of fly tying- just in time for winter and the long dark days ahead!

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Classic Wet Flies - Feb 3rd Tuesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Tying and Fishing wet flies is a "forgotten" art. Swinging wet flies is often THE technique to fooling fish both during a hatch and those times when there seems that nothing is happening. Join Paul Melchior for a look into classic wet fly construction. You will learn both feather wing and fiber winged wets.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Fly Patterns for Wisconsin Spring Creeks - Feb 4th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

The Wisconsin Spring creeks host complex biodiversity. Join Chifly staffer Josh McKown as he shares some of his most productive patterns for the Driftless

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Dan Boggs & Abe Downs; Blackwater Fly Fishing - Saturday, February 7th Fly Tying Demo 1:00 - 3:00 PM Presentation: Black Water Fly Fishing - Smallmouth & Musky 3:30 - 4:30 PM

Come meet Dan Boggs & Abe Downs from Blackwater Fly Fishing from Merrill, Wisconsin to learn about the incredible Fly Fishing opportunities on the Wisconsin River.

The duo will be demonstrating their fly tying crafts from 1:00 - 3:00 PM then will begin the presentation at 3:30 PM.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Guide Flies for Smallmouth Bass I - Feb 10th Tuesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Join Capt Will Winans as he shares some of his favorite flies for Smallmouth Bass. He will focus on techniques, tying efficiency, and proportions. These flies are also effective for Trout, Carp, and other species.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: European Nymphing - Flies & Techniques - Feb 11th, Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Catch more fish - period. This class will discuss the how and why of Short Line Nymphing. From Rigging to Fly Design there is a science behind the proper technique. You will never approach nymph fishing the same again.

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Paul Transue: Schmidt Outfitters fly Tying Demo & Presntation - Sunday, Feb 15th Fly Tying Demo: 1:00 - 3:00 PM Presentation: Trout, Salmon, Steelhead & Smallmouth on the Manistee River: 3:30 - 4:30 PM

Join Paul Transue, co-owner of Schmidt Outfitters in Wellston, MI for an afternoon of fishy talk. Paul and his crew have a diverse year-round fishery on the Manistee & Pine Rivers for Smallies, Trout, Salmon & Steelhead. Come meet Paul and his crew & learn more about the incredible angling opportunities 5 hours from Chicago!

Fly Tying Demo: 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Presentation: 3:30 - 4:30 PM Trout, Salmon, Steelhead & Smallmouth on the Manistee River:

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Lifecycle of the Caddisfly - Feb 17th Tuesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

From Larva to Pupa to Adult, Caddis Flies are abundant throughout trout season. In the Driftless small black Caddis begin hatching in Mar/April followed by 3 other primary types until mid July. In the class we will tie a Larva, Pupa, and an Adult.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Emergers - Feb 18th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Emergers are one of the most overlooked stages in the aquatic life cycle. From Aquatic emergers to Surface emergers you will learn more about what the trout see. Join Josh McKown for this one night class that will add an important tool to your arsenal.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Marabou Spey Flies - Feb 19th Thursday 7:00 - 9:00 PM

Come learn how to tie beautiful and productive spey flies for steelhead.

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Seminar - Michiana Guide Dustin Harley - A Year On The St. Joe River - Saturday, Feb 21st 3:30 - 4:30

A Year On The St. Joe River Presentation/Slide Show

Join river guide DUSTIN HARLEY of Ripple Guide Service to learn about some fantastic angling opportunities less than 2 hours from Chicago. From Salmon & Steelhead to Smallmouth the St. Joe system is a year round quality fishery. Dustin and his crew are experts at getting their clients on fish and patient instructors. This is a free presentation that will take place at the shop. Slide show starts at 4:00 PM Saturday, February 9th!

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Introduction to Fly Tying - Feb 24th, Mar 3rd, Mar 10th Tuesday Evenings 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Learn the Art of Fly Tying!

Join instructor, Will Winans for this comprehensive three-session class designed to introduce the fundamentals of fly tying.

In 3 classes you'll learn to tie the three major categories of flies: streamers, nymphs and dry flies.

No experience necessary. Call 312-944-3474 to reserve your spot.



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Intermediate Fly Tying : Steelhead Flies - Eggs & Nymphs - Feb 25th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Come learn some of the most productive egg and nymph patterns for Great Lakes Steelhead. Nymph fishing for Steelhead has proven to be one of the most effective methods for hooking Chrome. We will tie proven egg and nymph patterns for successfully fooling Great Lakes Steelhead. We will tie: Nuke Egg, Stonefly Nymph, Hex Nymph, and Caddis Larva. We will discuss variations and what time of year to fish certain flies and why.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Hexagenia Flies - Feb 26th Thursday 7:00 - 9:00 PM

Join Sand County Specialist Paul Melchior as he demonstrates some of his most unique and effective patterns to fool finicky fish during this mysterious hatch.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Musky Flies - Mar 4th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Not the fish of 10,000 casts anymore. Seems like everyone fishes for Musky on the fly these days. Come learn techniques for constructing flies for apex predators. We will discuss hooks, connections, and material distribution. Remember, at the end of the day you are going to have to cast this thing... for 8 hours!

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Flats Flies I - Bonefish - Mar 11th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Bonefish style patterns are effective on many salt and freshwater fish. We will tie a few different shrimp patterns and talk about variations in size, color, and weight.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Lifecycle of the Mayfly - Mar 12th Thursday 7:00 - 9:00 PM

Mayflies are a sign of healthy trout habitat. Some of the most abundant Mayflies in the Driftless Region include BWOs, Hendricksons, Sulphers, and Tricos. We will tie various flies that represent both different species and stages of this important aquatic insect. Instructor: Paul Melchior.

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Kip Vieth - Wildwood Float Trips - Saturday, March 14th Fly Tying demonstration from 1:00 - 3:00 PM followed by a presentation from 3:30 - 4:30 PM

Saturday March 14th 3:30 - 4:30

Kip Vieth from Wildwood Float Trips will be a the shop for a presentation on why the Upper Mississippi is the best destination for both Smallmouth Bass and Musky. Kip bring years of fishing & guiding experience and is enthusiastic about his home water.
Fly Tying Demo from 1:00 - 3:00 PM followed by a presentation at 3:30 PM

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Guide Flies for Smallmouth Bass II - Mar 17th Tuesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

The second class in this series on Smallmouth bass flies. Come learn some favorites from Capt Will Winans that are sure to produce on your next Small Jaw outing.

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Intermediate Fly Tying Class: Flats Flies II - Permit - Mar 18th Wednesday 6:30 - 8:30 PM

Permit are undoubtedly one of the most difficult to catch on fly. We will tie proven patterns for these finicky flats fish discussing sink rate, strip, and general Permit behavior. Crabs and Shrimp are on the menu so don't forget to bring the cocktail sauce. Instructor: Jon Uhlenhop

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Two Day Fly Fishing School In Wisconsin - Saturday and Sunday, May 16th - 17th

Join the talented instructors of Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters on a beautiful trout stream in bucolic Southwest Wisconsin, just four hours away from Chicago, for our most comprehensive fly fishing school.

Our program enters it's 14th year and has evolved into one of the nation's finest "Introduction to Fly Fishing Schools"

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Two Day Fly Fishing School In Wisconsin - Saturday and Sunday, May 30th - 31st

Join the talented instructors of Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters on a beautiful trout stream in bucolic Southwest Wisconsin, just four hours away from Chicago, for our most comprehensive fly fishing school.

Our program enters it's 14th year and has evolved into one of the nation's finest "Introduction to Fly Fishing Schools"

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Two Day Fly Fishing School In Wisconsin - Saturday & Sunday, June 13th - 14th

Join the talented instructors of Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters on a beautiful trout stream in bucolic Southwest Wisconsin, just four hours away from Chicago, for our most comprehensive fly fishing school.

Our program enters it's 14th year and has evolved into one of the nation's finest "Introduction to Fly Fishing Schools"

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Two Day Fly Fishing School in Wisconsin - Saturday & Sunday, July 11th - 12th

Join the talented instructors of Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters on a beautiful trout stream in bucolic Southwest Wisconsin, just four hours away from Chicago, for our most comprehensive fly fishing school.

Our program enters it's 14th year and has evolved into one of the nation's finest "Introduction to Fly Fishing Schools"

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Two Day Fly Fishing school in Wisconsin - Saturday & Sunday, September 12th - 13th

Join the talented instructors of Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters on a beautiful trout stream in bucolic Southwest Wisconsin, just four hours away from Chicago, for our most comprehensive fly fishing school.

Our program enters it's 14th year and has evolved into one of the nation's finest "Introduction to Fly Fishing Schools"

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