Welcome to Vanguard Chapter, Trout Unlimited

from Jeff Gerwitz, Chapter President

Trout Unlimited is first and foremost a conservation organization dedicated to conserve, protect and restore Michigan's coldwater fisheries and their watersheds. But the dirty little secret is that a very large percentage of our members also love to fish. Wading a picturesque river or flowing with the current in a drift boat, we truly enjoy our rivers, lakes and streams. Our love of the outdoors leads us to participate in these conservation efforts. We are always looking for new members to support our conservation efforts with their time or money.

TU came in to being when a group of like minded men decided that something had to be done to restore rivers that had been damaged by logging, and to restore our fisheries. They saw the need and did something about it. Vanguard Chapter, along with the other 19 chapters in Michigan have collectively done much to conserve and protect, and continue with their work projects every year. The problem is that we are facing not one but two new invasive species in our waters and it has largely gone unnoticed. You may have read about the New Zealand Mud Snail and "Rock Snot" or didymos. Due to their size the microscopic mud snails are easily overlooked, but their impact on the fish in the infected areas is huge. As has been mentioned in past articles this year it is vitally important to educate our members and other groups that use our rivers, to wash their boots, shoes, waders and boots in Formula 409 after each trip or before going to another river or stream. Doing so will prevent the spread of these organisms. 

You can also share this information with others you see on the water. Canoes, boats, inner tubes etc are used most every day in the summer and these folks are generally unaware of the situation. A friendly conservation can help more that you might realize, and maybe even get a new member for TU.

Membership Meetings


September’s meeting will be a picnic/fishing outing in Rochester Park.  It will be held on Sunday, Sept 17 and will begin at Noon.  It will be held in the large pavilion at the south end of the park, across from the Pond.  This is a family outing so bring your kids, brothers, sisters, parents, etc.  All areas will still be open to fishing so you have Paint Creek and the Pond to fish in.  The pond is a great spot for the kids to fish as it is loaded with fish and it doesn’t take much to catch them.  The Chapter will provide the hot dogs and brats.  Please bring a dish to pass.


October’s meeting will be held on the regular day which is October 12 at 7:30 PM.  Our guest speaker will be Michigan author Ann Miller.  Due to the large crowd expected for this event we will be having the meeting at the Camp Ticonderoga Restaurant on Rochester Rd. in Troy.


Ann Miller has been fishing her entire life, but can now say that she has been exclusively fly fishing for more than half that time. A member of the Federation of Fly Fishers and Trout Unlimited, she decided to become more active in the Great Lakes Council 20 years ago, becoming editor of the now defunct newsletter, The Leader. Editing quickly lead to writing, and before long she was penning essays for other publications. Tom Helgeson encouraged her to submit her work to Midwest Fly Fishing, and soon she was writing her own bimonthly column, Natural Settings, for the magazine.


Ann’s most recent project stemmed from her love of fly fishing and teaching. While teaching beginning and intermediate fly fishing schools, she became frustrated with the lack of comprehensive Midwest information on insect hatches, taxonomy, behavior, and flies to match them. An aquatic biologist, she decided to tackle the world of bugs head on, and the result is Hatch Guide for Upper Midwest Streams. The field guide was published in late 2011 by Frank Amato Publications and has already gone into its second printing.


In addition to writing, Ann is the president and co-founder of Flygirls, an organization whose purpose is to help women to get into the field of fly fishing. The club was founded in 1996 and continues in its purpose to teach women to fly fish as well as provide fly fishing and fly tying outings around the state


  “Chapter of the Year - One TU”  

I am proud to announce that the Vanguard Chapter received the Michigan TU “Chapter of the Year Award” for 2016 at the MITU Spring Quarterly Meeting this past weekend.  This award is granted to the chapter that most closely reflects the ideals of Trout Unlimited and is considered to be a role model for all state chapters to emulate. This is an annual award which is granted based upon the activities and achievements of the preceding fiscal year where consideration is given to total chapter achievements, as opposed to a single event or program.

  In order to qualify for this award the chapter must:  

Demonstrate continued membership and financial growth.

Work to affect significant contributions to the resources, either through active resource improvement work, public education and advocacy or financial support of such activities undertaken by other chapters.

Show continued involvement in Michigan Trout Unlimited activities. This is a Michigan Trout Unlimited award, so the activities must benefit Michigan Trout Unlimited and its mission.

This award is the result of the continued involvement and dedication shown by all of the members that continually volunteer their time and sweat by showing up at meetings, projects, banquets, outings, etc.  To all of you that have sat through boring board meetings, busted your butts removing beaver dams and log jams, hawked raffle tickets, and eaten mediocre food at banquets, I say congratulations.  I whole-heartedly agree with MITU – this award is well deserved.  Keep up the good work.

 Jeff Gerwitz – President

PS: This is the third time that Vanguard has received this award.



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