In Atlanta, when it comes to fly fishing, Cabelas in Acworth, Georgia is an up to speed big box store worth visiting
A week ago, Alicia Ferguson, Cabelas Retail Marketing Manager hosted the North Georgia Council of Trout Unlimited (Cohutta Chapter) and put on a well engineered event at the new Acworth, Georgia store. The two day weekend fly fishing event successfully made the leap of being interesting to those just curious about fly fishing, fly casting and fly tying to those who held advanced skills in all aspects of it.
Especially noteworthy about the event was the caliber of presenters and instructors: Eric Cook, Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Master Casting Instructor; Wanda Taylor, Federation of Fly Fishers Certified Casting Instructor, supporter of Healing Waters, co-founder of Casting Carolinas and Casting for Recovery; Bob Foster, noted fly tyer with invented patterns to his name; Steve Westmoreland, Cabelas fishing department “Outfitter” and TU member; Fred Ruppel, Trout Unlimited representative; Alabama’s guru of fly fishing for redfish, David Diaz; Jeff Durniak, Georgia Department of Natural Resources fish biologist and Henry Cowen, a Brooklyn, New York transplant and professional guide who fishes Georgia’s fresh and saltwater out of two custom boats.
In addition to all the presenters knowledge and interesting views on their chosen subjects, it was the their collective willingness to share when, where and how to fish for everything from redfish to shoal base.
Jimmy Harris, owner of the most noted of North Georgia’s fly shops, Unicoi Outfitters in Helen, Georgia also presented at Cabelas. He took the audience visually to some of the most historic, as well as pristine trout and private waters in North Georgia. His enthusiasm about Georgia’s 4,000 miles of fishable offerings was catching, Most in the audience, including this chronicler, wanted to leave for Helen immediately.
Fly casting drew not only the attendees participation, but those just passing by. Cabelas provided enough rods, plenty of room and a shallow casting pond that accommodated anyone willing to look like a rookie. It was fun to watch. Some got the hang of it in a few minutes – feeling the line load he rod. A few able to make a successful single haul. Others, of course, doomed to a long schooling.