On April 14th, James Madison University students joined us in doing a joint fishing/stewardship outing at Madison Run, in Shenandoah National Park. The event was a success! In our main event of the semester, eight individuals joined us in helping take better care of one of the Shenandoah Valley’s most popular fly fishing spots. After setting up base camp, students were taught about Leave No Trace principles. We put this lesson into action by cleaning up the main fire road which ran through Madison Run and the sides of the stream bank. We collected over two trash bags worth of litter, mostly consisting of glass bottles and other containers. 

Once our cleanup was finished, participants worked with Keegan to learn fly fishing techniques and setup while AJ got to work prepping lunch. With good weather and good company, we made the most of our time at Madison Run. Participants switched between chowing down on hotdogs and trying their hand at catching trout. Unfortunately, there was only one fish, but participants were excited to take a shot at fly fishing again in the future. Before leaving for JMU, participants participated in a raffle, and many were excited about the new NPT goodies. 

Overall, the event was a great way to wrap up the semester here in the valley. With a smaller group, we were able to connect more with each participant and help support their love for stewardship. We’re excited to potentially return to Madison Run next fall and to help motivate students to learn more about Shenandoah National Park and the beauty of the outdoors.