Speakers

Jim Bensinger is a former Marine and the owner of Fiber Flies Dubbing. Obsessed with all things fly fishing—and especially fly tying—Bensinger has developed a line of materials derived from Alpaca. This material is perfect for dubbing. Amateur fly tyers will love it. Bensinger also serves as the Assistant Project Lead for the Quantico Program for Project Healing Waters in Quantico, Virginia. He’s lead hundreds of fly tying classes, and is especially gifted at bringing along those new to fly tying into the fold.

Jamie Biel joined Treaty Oak Distilling in June 2018 with a focus on science and sustainability. As a botanist and former high school science teacher, she understands and appreciates the biochemistry of fermentation, distillation, and maturation. From water quality and conservation to sustainable farming techniques and locally sourced organic and heirloom grains, sustainability is a pillar of Treaty Oak Distilling. Jamie has found her passion and palate in bourbons and is always happy to raise a glass. Want to learn more about bourbon and distilling in general? Don’t miss our new Bourbon & Bass Bugs Class where Jamie will be the lead instructor. You’ll get to ask her any question about bourbon you want, and then taste some of the best bourbon made in Texas!

Peter Boettcher is a German-born and trained Master Brewer with a degree in brewing science from the Munich-based Doemens Academy and more than 30 years of brewing industry experience. He is an international brewing consultant as well as the developer and creator of the Journeyman Brewer and Technical Brewer Certification program. Students completing his courses have a 98% employment placement rate with local breweries. Peter’s German-style wheat and lager beers have won numerous gold and silver medals at the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup. Peter will share a lifetime’s worth of wisdom and experience with Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival attendees in his free “Beer Making 101” classes, offered both Saturday and Sunday. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to learn from a true master craftsman.

Kirk Deeter is the editor-in-chief of Trout Unlimited Media, including TROUT magazine, and TROUT Digital.  He’s also the editor of Angling Trade, the business-to-business media group that covers fly fishing in North America.  A long-time editor-at-large for Field & Stream, he is the author of several books, most notably The Little Red Book of Fly Fishing. His work has also appeared in WiredOutsideMen’s JournalThe New York TimesUSA TodayGarden & Gun, and many other publications.  Known for his offbeat, “out there” story angles, he’s covered fishing on five continents and three oceans, from the tip of Tierra del Fuego in Argentina to north of the Arctic Circle in Russia, from the Tasmanian highlands to the Amazon jungle. He lives in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, with his wife, Sarah.

Photo by Jay Nichols

Pat Dorsey is the head guide and co-owner of the Blue Quill Angler fly shop in Evergreen, Colorado where he has guided for 30 years. He oversees and trains more than 25 guides, setting the standard for integrity and professionalism in the Blue Quill Angler guide operation. Dorsey also, maintains an online stream report that monitors stream flows and conditions for the Blue, Colorado, South Platte (Cheesman, Deckers, Spinney Mountain Ranch, and Elevenmile Canyon), North Fork of the South Platte, and Williams Fork Rivers. Dorsey is an accomplished fly tier and has originated a number of very effective patterns such as the Mercury series, UV scud, Limeade, Cherry-Limeade, Paper Tiger, Top Secret Midge, Medallion Midge and the famed Black Beauty. Although Pat Dorsey no longer has the time to tie flies commercially, he once produced over 28,000 flies in a year. Dorsey is a fly designer for Umpqua Feather Merchants. His signature flies are available at the Blue Quill Angler and other specialty fly shop throughout the United States. Pat Dorsey is also a Pro Team Member for Whiting Farms. Many of his flies incorporate Whiting Farm products. Don’t miss his specialty class Fly Fishing Tailwaters it has limited seating for availability check here.

Capt. Gary Dubiel, owner of Spec Fever Guide Service, has been running inshore, nearshore and coastal river charters for 20 seasons. He is a lifelong fly fisherman but also a passionate light tackle angler. Gary pioneered the popping cork craze for NC trophy red drum, turning what was a night time bait fishery into a day time artificial lure fishery. Progressing that one step further, Gary invented the Pop-N-Fly rig and revolutionized fly fishing for these giant reds. The Pop N Fly is produced by the Flymen Fishing Company and Capt. Gary has written an accompanying book, “Dubiel’s Pop-N-Fly.” Capt. Gary has written and lectured on both light tackle and fly fishing and he has appeared on local. national and international angling shows He is a frequent speaker at both local, national and international fishing shows. He has also been featured in many major sports fishing magazines and in a number of books. He is an IGFA Fly Rod World Record holder and a fly designer. Gary’s angling adventures have taken him across North American, the Caribbean and to Europe. Gary is on the National Advisory Staff at TFO Rods and is involved in rod design. He is also Brand Ambassador at Florida Fishing Products and Pro Staff with Rapala, Sufix Fishing Line and Storm Lures and professional guide with Costa Sunglasses, Scientific Fly Lines, Regal Vise, Columbia Clothing, Simms and Soft Science Shoes. Don’t miss Captain Gary’s specialty paid class with limited seating on “Locating and Landing Monster Redfish”. Want to be placed on the early notification list this class? Then drop us a note at Fishutopia@comcast.net

Tadd Fore grew up fishing and hunting in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, but it was his now-wife MeKenzie who first introduced him to fly fishing. After completing a graduate program in sustainable agriculture at Arkansas State University, the Fores moved to western Colorado in search of high mountain trout streams before his home waters called Tadd Fore back to the Ozarks. Today Fore is assistant manager of the famed Dally’s Ozark Fly Fisher in Cotter on Arkansas’ White River. When he’s not running the shop, you will find Fore guiding trout and smallmouth trips. He is a cofounder of the Smallmouth Tour, a clinic that takes place on select smallmouth streams throughout the Ozarks of Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Missouri. The Fores’ two daughters, Falyn and Lorelei, are shaping up to be dynamite anglers in their own right. Don’t miss his talk on fly fishing the White River.

Jerry Hamon is an avid fly angler, fly tyer, and dedicated kayaker who loves nothing better than patrolling the local waterways of Texas looking for his next trophy bass. He is past President of both the Texas Council of Fly Fishers International and the Mariner-Sails Kayak Fishing Club. Hamon is serving his second term on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Freshwater Fisheries Advisory Committee and was recently appointed to serve as its Chairman. He’s a certified Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Angler Education Area Chief/Instructor and enjoys fishing tournaments when his schedule allows. Hamon’s class “Fly Fishing from a Kayak” has proven wildly popular and this will be offered both days of the festival in cooperation with Mariner-Sails.

Phil Iwane ties each fly like it’s a work of art. He is an Umpqua Signature Fly Designer with patterns including the Iwan-e-Dun extended body mayfly series and the Phil’s No Mercy Midge. He is also on the pro team of Whiting Farms, Abel, Ross Reels, Airflo, Solarez, Force Fly Fishing, and Dr. Slick Co. He has tied flies at numerous local, regional, national, and international venues. Iwane is a volunteer with Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing in Colorado. He is eager to tie for attendees of the 2021 Texas Fly & Brew, where he hopes to share his insider tips and tricks and reveal the secrets of his highly successful nymphing rig. Make plans to watch Phil while he ties his No Mercy Midge.

Chris Johnson is the owner and founder of Living Waters Fly Fishing, a fly shop and guide service based out of Round Rock, Texas. He has guided the Texas Hill Country since 2006 and has fly fished the heart of the state for over 20 years. Chris has been a licensed guide in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and Alaska. Chris is an IFFF Certified Casting Instructor, Umpqua Signature Fly Designer, Tenkara USA Guide, and TPWD Angler Educator. He is also a pro team member for Whiting Farms, Scott Fly Rods, Dyna-King, and Scientific Anglers. Chris is dedicated to sharing his passion for the sport and investing in the next generation of fly anglers. He often is a featured presenter and fly tier at fly fishing, outdoor, and community events throughout the state. Johnson and his shop have also been featured in several outdoor publications including Trout magazine, Garden and Gun, and Tenkara Magazine. He was also awarded the 2014 Man of the Year from the IFFF Texas Council, and in the same year, Living Waters was the recipient of the IFFF’s prestigious Lee Wulff Award. In addition to fly fishing, Johnson is passionate about film and photography. He co-produced the short film “Unspoken,” in an effort to raise awareness for Rio Grande Cutthroat trout conservation. As a result, Living Waters is working with Trout Unlimited as a Gold Level endorsed TU Business to restore Rio Grande Cutthroat throughout their native range. This marks the first year Johnson has joined us, and we invited you to attend a variety of his classes over the weekend. These include Fly Fishing the Republic of Texas, Fly Fishing Southern Colorado and others.  He’ll also be sharing some fly tying tips with us as well. Johnson is happily married to his wife Emily and together they enjoy fly fishing the world and raising their children in the sport.

His father introduced Steve Maldonado of Evergreen, Colorado, to the outdoors as a child, and he has been fishing ever since. He is an Umpqua Signature Fly Designer with numerous patterns to his credit, including Maldo’s Trico, Maldo’s PMD Emerger, and Maldonado’s Jungle Junkie. He is also a pro staffer with Semperfli, Regal Vise, Scientific Anglers, Ahrex Hooks, and Solarez. A huge saltwater angling fan, Maldonado has fished all over the United States as well as Belize, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Mexico, and Canada. He is passionate about fly fishing and fly tying and teaching others to match the hatch and learn to tie flies. Be sure to watch Steve as he teaches our attendees how to tie streamers for big trout.

Wayne McGee‘s lifelong dream has been to run a world-class fishing operation on a prolific river system in Alaska’s Bristol Bay. Luckily for his many clients, McGee’s dream came true! For the past 18 years, McGee has fished across Alaska–including his “home water,” the Alagnak River, where you’ll find his Alaska Trophy Adventures Lodge. McGee doesn’t limit his fishing to Alaska, though: he has pursued everything from tigerfish and Nile perch in the Congo and Nile Rivers of Africa, to Atlantic salmon and sea trout in Norway and Scotland. In a former life McGee owned a charter boat company based in Senegal, West Africa, where he chased blue marlin, tuna, and sailfish. Today his heart is firmly fixed in Alaska’s Bristol Bay and the wild Alagnak River–and he’s eager to share the region’s beauty and bounty with you!

At eight years old, Braden Miller taught himself to tie flies by watching Youtube and Instagram videos. Now 14, Miller has traveled the country chasing fish with his TFO fly rods and hand-tied flies. Current fave prey: muskie! He has tied flies at the Fly Fishing Expo in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, Lefty Kreh’s Tie Fest, and The International Fly Tyers Symposium. Miller was the youngest competitor in last summer’s iCast Iron Fly Competition in Orlando, and tied flies for the Project Healing Waters 2-Fly Tournament at Virginia’s Rose River Farms. Last  year he started a fishing club at his middle school, and with the support of his principal and science teacher, helped bring in Trout in the Classroom, which teaches students about fishing and conservation. Miller is TFO’s first Junior Ambassador, a Norvise team member, and an ambassador/pro-staff member for Fly Life Company, Flymen Fishing Co., District Angling, Fair Flies, and most recently, Catch Cam Nets. Follow Miller on Instagram at flyfisher0906, on Facebook as Braden.Miller.0906–and watch for his upcoming YouTube channel!

Karlie Roland grew up with a fly rod in one hand and a fly-tying vise in the other. She spent her summers in Last Chance, Idaho, where her family has fished the Henry’s Fork for generations. Roland has traveled from the Rockies to the Pacific Northwest and from Patagonia to Cuba and Christmas Island in her ongoing search for trout, salmon, steelhead, and anything else that will eat her fly on the flats! A tireless advocate for fisheries conservation and watershed protection, Roland is a passionate angler and educator with extensive experience in leading fly fishing schools and hosted travel. She guides for TroutHunter Lodge on the river that started it all: the Henry’s Fork. Roland will teach a limited-seating, women-only class at the 2021 Texas Fly & Brew titled “Becoming an Independent Woman Angler.”

Tom Rosenbauer has been a fly fisher for 50 years and was a commercial fly tier by age 14. He has fished extensively across North America, in England’s fabled chalk streams, on Christmas Island, and in the Bahamas, Belize, Kamchatka, and Chile. He is credited with bringing bead-head flies to North America and is the inventor of the Big Eye hook, Magnetic Net Retriever, and tungsten beads for fly tying. Rosenbauer has some 20 fly fishing books in print including The Orvis Fly-Fishing Guide; Reading Trout Streams; Prospecting for Trout; Casting Illusions; Fly Fishing in America; Approach and Presentation; Trout Foods and Their Imitations; Nymphing Techniques; Leaders, Knots, and Tippets; Dry-Fly Techniques; The Orvis Fly Fishing Encyclopedia; and The Orvis Fly-Tying Guide, which won a 2001 National Outdoor Book Award. Salt, Rosenbauer’s collaboration with photographer Andy Anderson, also won a National Outdoor Book Award in 2014. He has been published in Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, Catalog Age, Fly Fisherman, Gray’s Sporting Journal, Sporting Classics, Fly Rod & Reel, Audubon, Men’s Journal, and more. His latest book, Fly Fishing for Trout—The Next Level, was published in November 2016. Rosenbauer is the writer and narrator of “The Orvis Fly-Fishing Guide Podcast,” one of the top outdoor podcasts on iTunes. Rosenbauer has worked for the Orvis Company for 44 years in a variety of capacities. In 2022 he was awarded Fly Rod & Reel’s Angler of the Year Award for his many educational efforts in books, magazine articles, and his podcast. He lives with his wife and son in southern Vermont on the banks of his favorite trout stream.

Allen Rupp has been tying flies for 30 years now. Growing up around the District of Columbia, his first fish on the fly were Potomac River smallies. Allen now owns and operates Fly On the Water  and while he lives in New York City, his flies have caught fish all over the world–from Belize, Chile, Canada, Mexico, the UK, and the Seychelles to Colorado, Montana, New York, Wisconsin, and beyond. Lately saltwater fish–and especially snook–have been taking up most of his time. This is Allen’s first appearance at the Texas Fly Fishing & Brew Festival, and we are pleased to have him. He’ll be tying flies and doing demos at his booth throughout the weekend.

Tim Urtiaga discovered fly fishing at a very young age and quickly decided he wanted to share his love for the quiet sport with others. Over the years Urtiaga has successfully guided many clients to beautiful trout on New Mexico’s famed San Juan River. After catching a few monster Northern pike on the fly, Urtiaga was himself “hooked”—and began to offer the only guided fly-fishing trips for Northern pike off of a boat. Urtiaga, who has been featured in Field & Stream and American Fly Fishing, is trying to raise awareness of Northern pike, abolish the catch-and-kill rule, and increase conservation efforts to protect this species. Urtiaga opened Eagle Nest Fly Shack in Eagle Nest, New Mexico, to provide a new generation of outdoor enthusiasts with the gear and equipment they need to become independent anglers. The Fly Shack, which really did begin as a shack beside an old gas station, thrived and grew until Urtiaga expanded to include more space and even lodging. Today Eagle Nest Fly Shack and Lodge offers eight hotel-style accommodations as well as guided fishing with four different experienced fishing guides.

For 16 years Dallas-based casting instructor, fly fisher, and fly tyer Rex Walker has been helping people improve their fly casting skills.  He has worked with many of the region’s fly fishing clubs, at fly fishing events across Texas, and with both Reel Recovery and Project Healing Waters. Walker is a Fly Fishers International-certified instructor and the fly casting coordinator for the Dallas Fly Fishers.  When not helping other fly fishers, Walker can often be found on Lake Texoma chasing black bass and striped bass on the fly.

Greg Welander is a manufacturer’s representative for major fly fishing brands like Norvise, Thomas & Thomas, Dagon Apparel, Seigler Reels, Sight Cast Fly Fishing and many others. He’s a lifelong angler who has been fishing since he was four years old; he started tying flies not long after. Growing up in San Antonio, Welander has fly fished for everything from stripers on the Red River below Lake Texoma to redfish in the Lower Laguna Madre to bass in local Texas Hill Country streams and lakes. He has been a fly-tying instructor and licensed guide for over ten years. Welander regularly guides clients on the Brazos River and its tributaries in North Texas, where he lives with his wife. Be sure to take in his class where he’s co-teaching Bourbon & Bass Bugs as well as his lecture on Texas Bass Fishing. You can follow Welander’s fly fishing journey through Upstream on the Fly.

Dana Williams, who hails from Austin, has been president of Texas Women Fly Fishers (TWFF)–one of the largest women’s fly-fishing organizations in the world–for three years. Currently an empty-nester with three kids in college, Williams is a former diplomat with experience in India, France, Cambodia, Switzerland, and Japan. She is a breast cancer survivor who won a TFO Lefty Kreh Professional Series II fly rod combo at a Casting for Recovery retreat in 2017, which ignited her love affair with fly fishing. Under her leadership, TWFF has reached close to 200 members statewide, the highest membership levels in club history. Dana enjoys wade fishing in central Texas rivers year-round for Guadalupe and largemouth bass in the warmwater season and trout on the Guadalupe River tailwater. She loves bringing new female anglers into fly fishing as much as she loves the tug of “the big one,” and counts the many friends made through fly fishing as the biggest blessing resulting from that first introduction to fly fishing at Casting for Recovery. Dana is guest speaker in this year’s “Ask a Female Angling Expert” panel discussion.

 

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For more information contact Festival Director Beau Beasley at Fishutopia@comcast.net, or call 703-402-8338.