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Montana fly fishing group bringing women together on the water

Posted at 10:11 PM, Jul 23, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-26 17:15:06-04

BIG SKY — The Gallatin River flowing between two smooth pebble beds was picturesque. The fly fishing spot that the MT Fly Gals call home was nestled just down a bank of tall grass, off Highway 191, in Big Sky.

It lines up with one of the most beautiful spots in America.

Sandy Erickson created MT Fly Gals, a group exclusively for women who love to fly fish. No experience is needed, meaning women from all ages, backgrounds, and abilities can join.

“The women are a fast growing segment in the sport, so we can add more people who are conserving our waters and getting out and having fun. I just wanted to introduce other women and young children to the sport,” Erickson said.

It’s easy to be a MT Fly Gal: All you have to do is ‘join’ their Facebook page and you’re in.

But why exclusively all women?

“[There’s] just a need for more women in the community to get together and connect in a safe place,” Kimberly Smith explained. “We have so much more fun, we don’t take it serious, we catch fish.”

Each fly gal had her own reason for choosing the sport — the calmness of the water, the loss of reality, or the fellowship with women.

“I love to know I put the right fly on to catch a fish, that makes my day. Even if I catch one, it means I chose the right spot and had the right bug on and that makes my day,” Patty Bartholomew said of her favorite part.

Beginners beware, this sport is sure to reel you in.

“The nice thing about it is, you can get into this sport really inexpensively and anyone can learn, it’s not complicated,” said Erickson. “It’s a super easy sport to learn and you will always be learning, it’s just fun.”