Museum of Northwest Colorado: Something fishy |

Museum of Northwest Colorado: Something fishy

Mary Pat Dunn, Museum of Northwest Colorado Registrar
Craig photographer Keith Gillam took this photo of May Grounds, part owner of Craig Sports for 14 years, with a fishing rod in her store in the late 1960s. The Museum of Northwest Colorado will be hosting an exhibit featuring over 200 years of fly rods and their history. The exhibit opens with a special presentation by exhibit owner and historian Jeff Hatton on Thursday.
Courtesy Photo

Fishing along the Yampa River in March can often turn into a good prospect with the warming daytime temperatures and receding ice. The river itself is actually starting to show promise as one of the state’s better streams for Rainbow Trout, and that in itself is enough to lure any fly fisherman outdoors and onto the stream banks this time of year.

For years, the local Craig Sports shop was the place to go for fishing gear and to catch up on the latest fishing reports and fishing news for the region. From 1960 to 1974 Carrol and May Grounds owned and operated the business, which they had purchased from previous owner Bill Barrett. Over the years until it finally closed in 2011, the fishing gear sold at Craig Sports underwent many changes and the angler’s fly rod especially evolved during those years.

For six weeks this spring, the Museum of Northwest Colorado will be the place to catch some great fly fishing ‘news’, as it hosts “The Gnome’s Traveling Fly Rod Exhibit” which will open Thursday. Colorado native Jeff Hatton is a rod maker, author, guide and fly-fishing historian. His extensive exhibit includes fishing rods from the late 1700’s through the mid-1900’s. It is the only traveling fly rod museum in the world that covers the evolution of the fishing rod. Hatton’s exhibit will fill the two new exhibit rooms on the museum’s main level. There will also be a free presentation by Hatton titled “An Irreverent Look at the History of Fly Fishing.”

So, before hitting the river banks with a pocketful of midges, head on over to the museum and enjoy this amazing exhibit, which will surely seem like an angler’s sweet dream. Following Hatton’s special presentation at 4 p.m. Thursday, the exhibit will be on display until May 7. The museum, located in downtown Craig, is open Monday through Saturday with free admission. For more information call 970-824-6360.

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