August 25th, 2013, at 8:21 am, one of my wild ideas came to fruition. 15 pioneers dragged themselves out of their tents/beds to make the journey to Monarch Lake in Grand County, Colorado, to compete in the inaugural (yet for legal reasons, still unofficial) Flyathlon. Many had endured wave after wave of soaking rain as they stood around the pre-race campfire last night, drinking some of Colorado’s finest beer (so much so that there was no post-race beer, an error I won’t make again next year…). The race day premise was simple. Run around Monarch Lake, catch a fish, and do it as quickly as you can. The bigger the fish you catch, the more time you get taken off at the end of your run. What could go wrong?
Fortunately, nothing went wrong. Everyone finished and everyone fished (note: not everyone fly fished, which made for one of the more spectacularly awesome stories in this race, more details of which will be posted soon). Of the 15 race participants, more than half hooked, landed, and documented their catch. And while some were thwarted by the fishing gods, it seemed like everyone had a wonderful time. Our winners were as follows:
Male Champion: Drew Peternell
Female Champion: Rebecca Klobuchar
Biggest Fish: Todd Doherty
Thanks to everyone who showed up to try something that I have loved doing for many years. I hope that you enjoyed it, and continue to enjoy it, as much as I do.
Please check out the following link for a video of the inaugural Flyathlon.
Special thanks to:
Elevation Beer Company, who provided us with the super-tasty First Cast IPA. I think it was the fine quality of this beer that kept 15 well educated adults standing around a smoldering campfire in the pouring rain. If you are in Poncha Springs (or any liquor store for that matter), give Elevation’s beers a shot.
My dad, who drove up this morning from Denver to sit in the woods for a couple of hours directing traffic so people wouldn’t get lost. Thanks Dad!
My neighbor and friend Matthew, who also sat in the woods, and managed beer logistics to perfection. His buddy Bryan Ludwig supplied this bad-ass tap system that poured smoothly all night. Ludwig also produced some rare world-class beers late in the evening that are likely the reason I feel like crap right now…
My wife and daughters, who not only put up with my stupid ideas every day, they make them happen. I am so lucky.
I am already planning next year’s event. It will be bigger and better, so please send me an email to let me know if you are interested in participating!!!