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Blane Chocklett Musky School - New/James Rivers

Enjoy a 1-Day School and 4 Days of Musky Fishing in Virginia

January 26th - February 1st, 2025


Brookwood House near Boones Mill, Virginia


Join hosts Josh Trammell and Blane Chocklett along with Josh Laferty, Braden Miller and Austin Conrad of Virginia Trophy Guides for a 1-Day MasterClass followed by 4 Days of Guided Fishing on the legendary New and/or James Rivers!

 

Register HERE!

*Please note that this school is designed for intermediate to advanced anglers. Our goal is to help you continue your education in fly casting, tying and overall knowledge in order to better target large predatory species like musky, pike and more.

Plan on arriving at Brookwood House property between 6-7 p.m . on Sunday, January 26th. You will take care of your own dinner before arriving. If you choose to fly in, the closest airport is Roanoke regional. You would need to rent a car from there and drive to the lodge. Your host Josh Trammell will be on site to greet you and introduce you Blane Chocklett as well as Josh Lafferty and Austin Conrad of Virginia Trophy Guides.


Once everyone has arrived and settled in on Sunday night, we will go over our schedule for the week. We'll then share a few drinks and hangout with Blane and the boys from VTG as we wind down for the evening.

Monday morning we'll get up and plan on having a light breakfast around 8 a.m. At 9 a.m. we will start Blane's Big Fly Casting Class and
that will continue until around noon. He'll go over techniques and tips to better perfect your casting skills when throwing large flies for predatory fish. When you're used to the typical trout and warm water sized streamer rods (7-8wt), it may be a bit daunting to pick up a 10-12wt rod and try casting a 10-12 inch long fly! Blane and the guides from VTG (as well as Josh) are well versed in casting large flies and will help you improve your game for the rest of the week's fishing and beyond. We will have rods on site for you to use if you choose not to bring your own.

Lunch will be from Noon- 1 p.m. and we'll grill up some burgers and hot dogs before we continue on with the rest of the day.


After we finish up lunch, we will gather in the lodge for some tying demonstrations from Blane. He will go over multiple flies as well as cover some important aspects in the build of those flies that help them "swim" correctly and effectively. Blane is a master of his craft and his mind works like very few in the fly design arena. If you're a fan of articulated flies...this is a class/presentation you don't want to miss.

We'll end day one with some cocktail and Q & A time from around 5 p.m. until we gather at 7 for some fine Southern cuisine.

Day two, Tuesday, is onto the fishing! We will fish with the VA Trophy Guides and Blane Chocklett himself on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Each angler will have a chance to fish with Blane (as he no longer guides professionally....this IS an MRO EXCLUSIVE experience).

The lodge is centrally located between the New River and the James River and we will be fishing whichever presents the best opportunities and conditions.

We will depart for home after breakfast on Saturday, February 1st.

Days two through five, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, we will be fishing the New River and James River targeting Musky. Our lodging is centrally located between the two and we'll be fishing whatever presents the best opportunities and conditions. Hopefully, each angler will get to see both rivers? Guests will fish one day each with Blane, Josh Laferty, Braden Miller, and Austin Conrad in groups of two per boat/guide.

All tackle and flies can be provided although you are welcome to bring your own. An equipment listing will be provided upon registration and can also be downloaded on the sign-up page of our website.



A piece from the Virginia Trophy Guides Website:

"The New River is the second oldest river in the world. Floating it feels like stepping back in time."

As you float through the breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, you'll be met with some of the finest fishing in the state. The New River starts in North Carolina and moves through the Southwest corridor of Virginia and into West Virginia before flowing into the Kanawha River. Virginia Trophy guides, as well as Blane himself, guide nearly every stretch of the New River in Virginia, but some areas are better for certain species than others.

"Home to Colonial history, the State Capital, and miles of scenic beauty, the James River is a gem that receives year-round attention."

The James River begins its 348-mile journey through Virginia in the Appalachians and winds its way to the Chesapeake Bay. Formed by the Jackson and Cowpasture rivers just outside of Iron Gate, Virginia, the James provides ample opportunities for the fly angler.

Virginia Trophy Guides operate from the headwaters downstream approximately 60 miles, where they target musky and smallmouth bass. Home to vibrant populations of both gamefish due to the river’s diverse habitat and high density of forage species, the James checks all the boxes for a day well spent. Expect flows from 800-2000 cfs, fishing over ancient granite ledges, cobble runs and bars, and long expansive pools full of both wood and rock structure. Truly, a fly anglers paradise.

You are going to be targeting Musky in two of the best locations in the country and with the areas most experienced guides, and one of the best Big Game Anglers and Fly Tyers alive today. Mad River Outfitters is honored to be working with this group and thrilled to offer this unique and exclusive experience to our friends and clients.




We will organize fishing times and locations the evening before each day. Boat launches will be under 50 minutes or so from the Brookwood House. Breakfast items will be available each morning for you to choose from and lunches will be provided by the guides while out on the water. We like like to get as much fishing time in as possible for these species so a quick, hearty sandwich and a bag of chips is the norm.



At the end of each day, we'll meet back at the Brookwood House to share stories from the day and enjoy dinner together. Blane will join us on the evening of the last day of fishing (Friday, January 31st) to have dinner and a few drinks with the group. He'll be happy to sign some books as well of course!

Breakfast items will be available for guests on the morning of Saturday the 1st before we check out at 10 a.m.


Blane Chocklett

  Guide, fly designer, author, Blane grew up fishing the small mountain streams near his home in Blue Ridge, Virginia. As a youngster, he started a guiding service and, in the late 1990's, opened Blue Ridge Fly Fishers in Roanoke, Virginia. Blane has worked for years to create fly patterns that have all the intricate nuances of flies with the strike-generating action of conventional lures. His fly patterns have revolutionized the fly shop industry! No other way to put it.

Over a decade ago, Blane returned to the river where he now owns and operates his guide service specializing in float trips for Musky, Smallmouth Bass, Stripers, Trout and many other species. Blane also hosts trips at home and abroad. He is the Southeastern Field Editor for Fly Fisherman magazine as well as a brand ambassador for some of the industry's top brands: Patagonia, Temple Fork Outfitters, Scientific Anglers, Costa, Yeti, Sightline Provisions, Renzetti, Adipose Boatworks and Hog Island Boatworks. 


Josh Trammell

Your host from Mad River Outfitters and Ohio Fly Fishing Guides.

Josh was born and raised in Northeast Ohio and caught the fishing bug early in life as he watched a neighbor fly fishing their backyard pond. At the age of 10 he started exploring all things fishing that Ohio had to offer.

From there he has gone on to chase steelhead and warmwater species across the southern shores of Lake Erie and beyond, always looking for that next opportunity.

Josh has also spent his last six summers guiding in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska for Naknek River Camp, where he also enjoys pursuing fish on two handed rods in his downtime.

While not on the water, Josh can often be found hovered over a vice somewhere whipping up all sorts of fishy flies. Josh enjoys sharing his passion with others and hopes they can catch the bug as bad as he’s got it!


Josh Laferty

Captain Josh Laferty is a Roanoke native and has been guiding the region since the early 2000s.  Josh is A well-traveled outdoorsman who has a passion for this craft and the places/fisheries he guides.

As one of the original musky fly fishing guides in the region, Josh has a unique level of experience and a clear understanding of what it takes to be successful on your hunt for southern musky. The angling opportunities in Virginia are as diverse as our seasons and with over three decades of  practical outdoor experience, you’re in good hands.

Summer brings Josh to Alaska, where his guiding turns to Pacific salmon, and one of the world’s finest rainbow trout fisheries. A longtime Bristol Bay guide, he’s known for his large personality and southern hospitality that ensures a great time afield.

Guiding year-round from Virginia to Alaska, he welcomes you to spend the day with an accomplished Captain and guide who can accommodate all skill levels.


Austin Conrad

 

Captain Austin Conrad grew up in oak hill– a town in Southern West Virginia– where he cut his teeth fishing for trout and smallmouth bass in the creeks and rivers of the area. 

Austin has spent the last 15 years in Virginia, fishing and guiding folks to wild trout, smallmouth bass, and musky. Austin spends a couple of months of the year in Bristol Bay, Alaska guiding clients to Silver Salmon, the world’s largest wild Rainbow Trout, and the other beautiful species of the region. 

Outside of guiding, Austin likes to spend time with his family and dogs and loves to cook a good southern meal. Captain Austin welcomes anglers of all experience levels in pursuing some of the finest freshwater predators in the South!

 



Braden Miller

 

Braden Miller has been fishing the different waters throughout Virginia since he could walk. He takes great pride in being a well-rounded angler, fishing both fly and conventional gear for many species, not only here in Virginia but in many states across the country as well.

He is not only well versed in fishing the waters of the Southwestern & Western parts of Virginia for smallies but living in Central Virginia allows Braden to target a wide array of species such as largemouth, carp, shad, striper, and more on rivers closer to home. He feels at home rowing his raft and putting anglers on the fish as he does chasing them himself.

Braden looks forward to guiding anglers of all experience levels & sharing tips & techniques that he has learned from several of his mentors throughout the years.

 

We have arranged use of the amazing Brookwood House. An amazing lodge/facility located in Boones Mill, Virginia which is about 25 minutes South of Roanoke. Located right on a gorgeous creek, this property hosts some beautiful views as well as provides a perfect spot to conduct the casting class. It is a spectacular facility and is an awesome place to gather, relax and wind down after a long day of Winter fishing.



From the Brookwood House website:

"Brookwood is a beautiful boutique waterfront rental property, intimate event venue, and regenerative retreat space nestled in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Roanoke, Virginia. Designed, built, and highly curated an architect and his life partner, it is a space specially designed for peace, regeneration, art, creativity, and connection. Backing up to a babbling creek with a waterfall, a large swimming pool, verandas, and terraced gardens. It is the perfect space for family reunions, intimate gatherings, creative retreats, co-working excursions, and workshops. We look forward to hosting you!"




 

MRO/Blane Chocklett Musky School and Trip

January 26th- February 1st, 2025


$3,595.00 per angler


Included in the trip: 6 nights loding, 1 day masterclass with Blane Chocklett, 4 days of guided fishing with Blane and VTG, shuttles on fishing days, all meals and equipment for the week excluding waders, rain gear and polarized sunglasses.

 


Not Included: Transportation to the location, alcoholic beverages for the week, VA fishing license and daily gratuities for the guides. 


Mad River Outfitters Presents:
Blane Chocklett Musky School and Trip


January 26th - February 1st, 2025

Held on the New/James Rivers at the Brookwood House located in Boones Mill, Virginia

This trip is limited to 7 Anglers and our host Josh Trammell

Register HERE!