Julia Mitchell had a kernel of an idea for a few years as she had some "lightly used" fly fishing clothes that didn't fit her any more and thought they would be perfect for another angler. Julia was working in a leadership role with United Women on the Fly which has a strong focus on diversity and inclusion on the water and then started a leadership role with a local fly fishing group where she met Temma Roby. After sharing her ideology of breaking down any barriers for women to enjoy fly fishing and providing used or donated gear and clothes Temma was on board with the mission. The two played to their strengths to get the nonprofit up and running. On August 5th, 2022 Rising to the Fly was born!
Please note we are currently only operating in the US and Canada but hope to one day expand across the globe.
Julia has been fly fishing since 1999 when she took a weekend intro class. She is co-founder of Rising to the Fly and a liaison with United Women on the Fly.
Julia’s Favorite Fly Fishing Moment: The first time I landed a fish completely on my own. I set up my own rod, tied all my own knots, chose the fly, chose the part of the river I wanted to fish and landed the fish all by myself. It certainly wasn't the biggest fish but I had a huge sense of accomplishment .
Julia’s favorite river to fish: The Trinity in Northern California is my favorite river. I have a cabin across the street from the river and it’s my happy place. Plus, catching a steelhead is magical.
Julia’s favorite fly: A streamer is a ton a fun but dry fly fishing is nirvana.
Temma has been fly fishing for almost two years. She is co-founder of Rising to the Fly, is on the United Women on the Fly team and the Board of Directors for Diablo Valley Fly Fishing Club.
Temma’s Favorite Fly Fishing Moment: It’s two moments. The first was when I was solo walking and wading Putah Creek by myself in early 2022 and landed my first trout and my second was actually when I lost a fish. I have worked hard to become an independent angler on rivers and I was fishing the Rogue, walking and wading in January of 2023 and hooked into a steelhead on a dead drift. The fish was STRONG. My tippet was not…I got the fish all the way to the net (which was too small) and he broke off everything I had rigged. Rather than beating myself up about what I did wrong, I think it was the first time I thought, damn, that was really cool.
Temma’s favorite river to fish: Well, this could change when I go to Montana this summer but right now it’s either the Dunsmuir/McCloud area or my home water, Putah Creek.
Temma’s favorite fly: Any sort of copper john.
Meet Emily! Emily is our first official Rising to the Fly volunteer and our Sponsor and Volunteer Coordinator.
Emily was born and raised in Bakersfield, CA and worked her way to Northern California over 16 years ago to attend California State University, Chico. Since graduating from college, she has been passionately involved in the Agricultural sector, specifically in California’s Processing Tomato Industry.
Emily started fly fishing over 10 years ago with her husband (Nick) and father in law (David). Unfortunately, her father-in-law became ill and she made a promise to him that her husband would never fish alone. He would always have a partner on the river and a spirit in the sky.
Emily fly fishes with passion and respect this sport deserves. She has developed an immense amount of confidence by surrounding herself with people who share similar sentiments like the co-founders at Rising to the Fly. Emily said, “starting out can be intimidating and in some cases economically challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. I’ve never felt like I couldn’t do anything because I’m a woman and I want to empower that same attitude onto others”.
We are so excited to have Emily on our team!
Meet our newest volunteer, Gwynne! Gwynne will be helping out with our education and guidance for Rising to the Fly.
Gwynne’s desire to fish stems back to when she was a little girl. She stood on a dock at Lake Almanor fishing shirtless with her 3 brothers, because she could. Growing up in Northern California, her parents instilled a love of adventure and nature and growing up with 3 brothers gave her thick skin and determination to show she could do “whatever” in spite of being a girl.
Fly fishing hooked and reeled her in, about 5 years ago. She sought out all opportunities to say “yes”, to as many fly fishing experiences as she could manage. She would attribute having an open heart, a learning mindset and a “be brave be awkward” attitude to spawning many adventures and friendships.
Gear she no longer needed was passed on to her eldest daughter, and she taught her to cast. Watching her daughter’s determination and seeing her daughter’s joy at netting her first fish on the fly inspired her to continue to support those who are fly curious (interested in fly fishing).
Gwynne affirms, “I am thrilled to be a part of Rising to the Fly! The only thing better than fly fishing is sharing information, collaborating and supporting other women on how to navigate where and how to begin.”
To break down barriers to make fly fishing accessible and inclusive to all women. Rising to the Fly is a tax-exempt organization
under the 501(c)(3) section of the IRS.
Making sure all women have access to fly fishing and the outdoors to improve mental and physical wellness.