A few months ago, here at Denver Outfitters, we started using Fridays to feature some of the amazing women who are a part of the fly fishing community! Since then we’ve met a ton of radical fly gals who are making an impact in the fly fishing world. Today we’re taking #FlyGalFriday to another level by featuring one of those anglers. Each Friday, from here on out (on this blog) we’ll be featuring and getting to know new women making their mark on the world of fly fishing!

We sent Natalie some questions about herself such as where she lived, where she fished, and the story behind her love for fly fishing. Below is her response…Get into it!

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FlyGalFriday Feature Natalie BennionAlthough I currently reside in Colorful Colorado, I was raised in Utah. I have a free spirited mother from Big Sky Montana, and a father from the potato fields of Idaho, you could say the outdoors have always held a special place in my heart. Through many of my outdoor adventures I have learned that personal growth is exactly that… personal.

I am continually redefining myself. In my college years (way back before social media existed, and before every person with a pair of hiking boots carried a digital camera…let’s not give away my age now) you would have found me swinging from ropes and climbing the red rocks of Moab. Where did that girl go?!
FlyGalFriday Feature Natalie BennionNow, I am married to my perfectly-imperfect opposite. There couldn’t be two people more contrasted in the universe who decided, “hey let’s get married!” I am an idealist, and he is a realist. I am the queen of homeopathy and he is in Pharmacy school. However, we share two common passions: parenting and fly fishing.

My wild and spontaneous days haven’t necessarily left, but have changed with our even more wild and free-spirited three year old. Most of our free time (as a family) is spent on the river chasing cold water trout. My passion for fly fishing didn’t begin until October of last year. It has been an adventure learning how to fly fish in the “off season.” We all know that fly fishing tests patience… try learning in iced-over rivers. What was I thinking!?

FlyGalFriday Feature Natalie Bennion

Many friends and acquaintances have asked me why I wanted to learn such a male dominated sport. In my mind, the answer is simple. I grew up in a traditional home. My Father worked (boy does he work hard) and my mother stayed home with us kiddos. I noticed a particular trend coming from such a family. Holidays and family get-togethers often meant the guys went fishing, ATV riding, golfing, or would gather around the big screen to watch a football game. Meanwhile, the women stewed in the kitchen preparing the next meal while juggling the wild and restless children. I have watched the women in my life selflessly serve their husbands and it’s truly admirable. However, as I grow older and look back on my beloved family memories, I see more for my future. Maybe I am just selfish, but I want my children to remember their childhood with mom on the river right beside dad, holding her own, tying her own flies and netting her own fish. Dinner can wait. Better yet, they can help me prepare it when we get home!

FlyGalFriday Feature Natalie Bennion Our fly fishing experience is unique. In fact, it can be less than ideal and inconvenient at times handling a small child around a roaring river. But we make it work, because it is important to us. The day is always well spent and the memories are invaluable. I refuse to spend my energy on things that are so fleeting or superficial, and I want to teach my son that there are greater joys in this world to be had.

Thus far in my fly fishing educational pursuit, as a female angler, I have felt very much embraced by the fly fishing community. I have already made some new and great friends, both male and female, through this new found passion. It absolutely amazes me how something like this can bring people so close together, who otherwise, may have never crossed paths.

Have I ever been discriminated against as a female angler? No… never. However, I do find it jocular to visit local fly shops and watch a few of the employees squirm trying to decide whether or not they should approach me. Often times, I have to ask for assistance which I have found interesting.

I can honestly say, I have become a trout junkie. I thrive off the feel of the quick tug on my line and I absolutely crave feeling the fish release from my hand back into the cold water. Over the next year, we will be residing from the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, to the cold waters in Alaska, to beautiful Utah, to the majestic views and peaks of the Grand Tetons. We are feeling a little homeless, so for now, we will claim the rivers. You can follow our traveling and fly fishing adventures on Instagram @a_ladys_angle.

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FlyGalFriday Feature Natalie Bennion

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