Washington, D.C. [September 15, 2022] – The National Park Trust, National Park Service (NPS), Our Military Kids, Trout Unlimited, and the Rocky Mountain Conservancy partnered recently to bring military service members and their families to Rocky Mountain National Park for a day of fly fishing on Sprague Lake.  

The NPS awarded funds to the National Park Trust, which is joining forces with Our Military Kids, to provide National Guard, Reserve, and combat injured service members and their families with access to recreational fishing opportunities in national park sites across the country. With the help of Trout Unlimited volunteers, families are learning how to fish, getting time to put their new skills into action, and then going home with their own fishing gear so they can fish again as a family.

“Rocky Mountain National Park did not disappoint. After taking many pictures of a moose and her calf, the Park Superintendent welcomed our group, then we enjoyed a wonderful day fly fishing on Sprague Lake. Our military families have served and sacrificed, and this day was about relaxing, enjoying, and soaking in the beauty of one of many national parks.” 

Kara Dallman, retired U.S. Navy Veteran and Executive Director of Our Military Kids

“National Park Trust is honored to partner with these amazing organizations to engage military families as we work to establish lifelong outdoor recreation habits and build relationships with local parks, public lands, and waters. Bringing families together, teaching them to fish, and then providing fishing equipment to keep allows participants to continue enjoying this activity and create more family memories in the great outdoors.” 

Grace Lee, National Park Trust executive director

“This event presented the perfect outdoor recreational opportunity for Trout Unlimited’s Service Partnership Program to show our gratitude to those who give selflessly for the nation.”

Eric Gregory, a volunteer for Trout Unlimited

Rocky Mountain Conservancy helped start the day by welcoming families to the Estes Park Visitor Center and provided transportation into the park. As part of this event, participating military families were presented with their Annual Interagency Military Pass, which provides entrance or access for one year to more than 2,000 federal recreational sites, including all National Park Service sites, for current members of the military and their dependents, veterans, and Gold Star families.

“We welcome the opportunity to collaborate and connect our military families with opportunities to recreate in and enjoy their national park. This is one small way to thank them for their service.” 

Darla Sidles, Rocky Mountain National Park Superintendent

“The Rocky Mountain Conservancy is always eager to support educational opportunities in Rocky Mountain National Park. Through amazing partnerships like with National Park Trust, Our Military Kids, and Trout Unlimited, these families were able to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience in this amazing national park. We hope they take the skills learned with us and continue accessing their local public lands!”

Carlie Bangs, Rocky Mountain Conservancy education director

This event at Rocky Mountain National Park is the second of five fishing events in 2022 at national park sites nationwide. Other event locations include Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, WV, Mississippi National River & Recreation Area, MN, Canaveral National Seashore, FL, and Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, CA.


National Park Trust’s mission is to preserve parks today and develop park stewards for tomorrow. We work closely with the National Park Service to acquire important privately owned lands to expand and complete our national parks. Our creative and innovative programs advance public parks, lands, and waters as spaces that are welcoming and accessible to every person in every community. We believe that our public parks, lands, and waters should be cared for, enjoyed by, and preserved by all for current and future generations. Find out more at 

Media Contact: Ivan Levin at 540-818-5818 or


Our Military Kids recognizes the sacrifice of children (ages 3-18) of deployed National Guard, deployed Reserve, or post-9/11 combat-injured service members or Veterans by offering extracurricular activity grants that build children’s self-confidence, enhance family wellness, and strengthen a shared sense of community. Since 2004, Our Military Kids has proudly provided 80,000 activity grants worth $31 million to children and teens across the country. For more information, please visit

Media Contact: Michelle Criqui at 703-734-6654 or


More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America’s 423 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

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