2020 Trout camp

The Derby City Fly Fishers  fifth annual TROUT CAMP is going to take place at Riverside Retreat located at Helm’s Landing on the Cumberland River, Friday, September 18th – Sunday, September 27th, 2020.

This is a Level 2 Trip.  You should be able to manage your leader and tippet and tie on flies.  You should also be able to cast  at least 30 feet. If you bring a kayak/canoe you should be proficient at managing them in moving water.

Trip coordinator is George Tipker and Wes Krupiczewicz is coordinating group cooking for evening meals.

There is a significant amount of space available.  You can come for 1 day, 10 days or any number of days in between. Throughout the years, we averaged about 20 attendees per day.  There is ample parking for cars, boats, and trailers.

Lodging or Camping:

Paula Barnes, proprietor of Riverside Retreat, has been gracious enough to allow us to setup tents and campers in the field behind the Retreat, provided that we also rent the four rooms at the lodge. Additionally, we rent the cabin west of the lodge and the loft in the barn. Nightly campfires, camaraderie and, of course, more than a few fish stories should provide ample entertainment when we are not on the water. Costs for this trip will be $35 a night per person in the rooms and $15 a night per person camping.

Rooms and/or camping can be reserved for one (1) night or for the entire nine (9) nights, or any amount of nights in between.  Rooms have two beds and floor space for two cots/sleeping bags.  Priority for beds will generally be based on length of stay and date of registration/sign up.  Campers will have the use of a bathroom with a shower. Since this is an extended stay trip, with members coming and going during the week, please bring your sleeping bag if not staying all 10 days. Ice for coolers is available on site for a nominal fee. Rooms in the lodge have stove tops, microwaves, and small refrigerators along with bathroom/shower facilities. Charcoal grills are on the back deck.

The club will supply the firewood for the “Evening Festivities” (if you have been on any club trip you know these can be as much fun as the fishing).  Most of us will be fishing during the day, so we may not always maintain a 24 hour fire but often times we do.  Make sure to bring a chair to enjoy the fire in the evening.

IMPORTANT: Reservations and payments for rooms and camping, can be done by clicking on the Sign Up Button below.  George Tipker, (trip leader) will notify you of your room assignments prior to the start of the trip.

Breakfast, lunch, and snacks as well as beverages of your choice  are your responsibility.

We have members who enjoy cooking for everyone, and we plan to provide “group” dinners throughout the week, as long as we get enough volunteers to spread the workload.  We ask for a $5 donation per dinner.   If you’d like to help by planning and preparing a meal or a desert, or if you’d be willing to perform general kitchen and cleanup chores please click the appropriate boxes at the bottom of the  Sign Up Page.  Wes Krupiczewicz will contact you prior to the outing to work out details with you.

We also need Volunteers to help with setup and tear down and hauling common use equipment and supplies to and from camp. We will setup on Friday September 18th and tear down on Sunday September 27th. If you can help with either, or both, please check the appropriate buttons at the bottom of the Sign Up Page. You’ll be contacted in advance to coordinate your duties. Any help, especially hauling, will be much appreciated.

We’ll have on hand all required meal preparation tools as well as common supplies of sugar, salt, flour, oil, and spices.   The kitchen will include preparation tables, Dutch Ovens, Large Pots Pans and Bowls,  gas cook tops, a large grill grate, a griddle,  propane tanks, bags of charcoal, cutting boards, etc.  More on meals later as we get this portion of the trip organized.


In the past, the Army Corps of Engineers has been very cooperative in planning  generation schedules that produce near ideal water levels for fishing from sunrise to mid afternoon during our encampment.  Of course, the planned schedule can be changed at any time to accommodate abnormal weather conditions or extra power demands — so be attentive to changing river conditions and stay flexible. At ideal water levels good wade fishing is available on the river at various locations, including, but not limited to, the Helms Landing area. However, if the river water level is elevated, the use of boats, canoes, kayaks, pontoons etc., is pretty much required. Also, with a boat, wading area opportunities/possibilities on the river are increased because some are accessible by boat only.

If we do happen to find the tailwater un-fishable due to excessive generation and water flow, we can always fish Hatchery Creek for migrating trout (Browns especially during September) or fish for bass or panfish on Lake Cumberland itself. NOTE: Go to the Stream Information – Cumberland River page on our DCFF website for more information about the river, possible floats in the upper section of the river, and alternative launch locations. If you have a boat, canoe, kayak, etc.,  please bring it; there is ample parking in the grass behind Riverside Retreat! If you don’t have a boat we will do our best to find you an empty seat in someone’s boat.   However there are no guarantees you will get a seat so be prepared with an alternate plan. If you do get a seat on someone’s boat you are expected to help the boat owner with expenses for gas, launch fees, etc. You will need to provide your own personal flotation device.

The following may be helpful when fishing the Cumberland Tailwater: Equipment includes 3 to 8 weight fly rods. Smaller rods are appropriate for nymph fishing while heavier weight rods are a better choice for streamer or “hopper/dropper” fishing. Flies include #8 to #18 nymphs, including pheasant tails, hare’s ears, prince, copper john’s, midges, and most other trout nymphs. Cracklebacks (both beaded and un-weighted) are always good, especially if swung behind a Chicago Fly. Black, white and olive wooly buggers are good streamers. Prominently white shad imitations work well and provide a visual fishing experience when fished from a boat. Hoppers and other terrestrials will take fish in September when fished along walls and high banks. If all else fails, bring the Club standby, catalpa worm patterns (AKA mop flies) or some Trout Magnets.

If you have any questions contact George at george@derbycityflyfishers.com, 502-594-2066.

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