A Great Day on the Battenkill for a Good Cause


Written by: Phil Monahan


Steve Lynch with a nice Battenkill brown that fell for a streamer in West Arlington, Vermont.

photo by Phil Monahan

Every year, I donate a trip to be included in the annual Casting for Recovery auction. CFR is an organization uses the auction to raise money for their programs, which combine fly fishing, counseling, and medical information to help breast-cancer patients and survivors focus on wellness instead of illness. You can read about the two previous trips here and here. This year’s highest bidder was Steve Lynch, a Connecticut-based angler who has his own blog, so I’ll let him tell the story:


As my wife and I have been a couple for over 20 years now, we have stopped trying to surprise each other with birthday or anniversary gifts. At this point, my better half will suggest something that she would like, and I’ll end up doing the same. So, after she came to me this year and mentioned that she was curious about the I-Robot, some bizarre little device that rolls around your house cleaning the floors, I promptly set about finding my birthday present.

I mentioned the Casting for Recovery website to her and how one of the items up for bid was a day of guided fishing on the famed Battenkill in Vermont with Orvis blog editor Phil Monahan. Well, as luck would have it, I ended up as the high bidder…go figure. Casting for Recovery was founded in 1996, in Manchester, Vermont, and if you are unfamiliar with this organization, I suggest you take a few moments to check it out the CFR Website.


The Battenkill has not been stocked in almost 40 years, and its browns are wild and colorful.

photo by Steve Lynch

The day with Phil was for up to 3 people, so I called my good friend Mike and put the plan in motion for him to meet me in VT. Mike is one of my favorite people…a good friend and someone who loves all things outdoors.

We met Phil at the wonderful hour of 5:30 a.m., picked up fishing licenses at the Wayside Country Store, and set about to find some fish. Gladly, that didn’t take too long. I’ve read a bit related to the Battenkill and understand that a 1 or 2 fish day is to be considered a success. I had lots of worries about carrying the skunk up from Connecticut and getting shut out. Thus, I was relieved that after 20 or so minutes of chucking streamers against the banks, I was rewarded with a beautiful brown trout—another victim of the Strolis H-A Snare streamer.

For once, I really don’t even know where to go with this post…this was one of the best overall days I have had on any river. Being able to fish with a good friend who I don’t get to see often enough, fishing the Battenkill, having Phil there to provide pointers, and, oh yeah, we caught some fish too!

Perhaps I’ll let the images do the talking…


This Battenkill brook trout fell to a caddis dry fly.

photo by Steve Lynch


Czech-nymphing this long run on the ‘kill produced about a dozen trout.

photo by Steve Lynch


There’s plenty to please the eye as you travel around southwestern Vermont with a fly rod.

photo by Steve Lynch


We saw some of the devastation caused by Tropical Storm Irene last August. This used to be
the road through the Green Mountain National Forest.

photo by Steve Lynch


Despite the incredible flooding, these little gems continue to thrive in the mountain streams.

photo by Steve Lynch

To see a couple more images on learn about Steve’s other adventures, check out The Weary Angler.

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