Berkshires to Beaches Expedition - Update 1

Hi families!

Most great, memorable fishing trips start with an early alarm, a groggy travel day, and itching anticipation to get out on the water to do what you love; this trip is no exception. 

The boys woke up early and traveled from all across the united states to meet up in the beautiful city of Boston. This group of guys is a mix from all over: Texas, Washington, North Carolina, Los Angeles, Colorado, Vermont, Connecticut, and New York. We all came together with one shared vision: to make memories, friends, and catch beautiful fish in even more beautiful places. 

Once our wonderful guide team met up with the kids, we hopped in our vans and drove across the state to Housatonic Meadows State Campground located in Sharon, Connecticut. As an experienced camper, this is one of my favorite campgrounds in the whole world - booming mature trees line the forest along the riverside, birds chirp, and the smallmouth bass and trout rise happily to the bugs hatching throughout the day. 

We were fortunate enough to get the best sites (thanks to Will Lillard) right along the water's edge. As the kids were guided through various lessons from setting up tents, camping ettiquette, and the proper ways to cast a fly rod. With camp all set up, the boys enjoyed a yummy chicken pasta dinner as the sun fell over the rounded Berkshire mountains with the Housatonic river running gracefully along side it. 

As the day came to a close, the boys traded cell phones and electronics for camp chairs and s'mores sticks, watching the twinkling fireflies play around camp. This was where our ceremonial introductory Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions speech was given to the kids going over ground rules, our itinerary, and voicing and listening to everyone's goals for the trip. I love seeing how bought in and eager the group of boys are for the days ahead. 

This is my fourth time directing this Berkshires to Beaches trip since it first started and I can’t tell you how excited I am to lead these guys over the next two weeks. This trip is going to be special. I’ve seen some of the boys reach for their pockets just to find a void where their phones used to be. This puts a smile on my face reminding me of how important it is for all of us to unplug and reconnect with ourselves in beautiful places around other people; this is especially true for your screenagers. 

Over the next few days, the boys will get the chance to fish for the elusive and massive pike on a fly rod from canoes. This type of fishing is challenging, which makes it all the more rewarding when a kid manages to land one in the boat. When not pike fishing, we will be casting for aggressive smallmouth and more finicky trout as the evenings come to a close. Needless to say, the boys have an exciting three days ahead of them fishing near the mountains. Next time you hear from us, we will be updating you about our fishing report as we prepare to drive to Cape Cod to switch to another wonderful fish, the striped bass. 

Until that time comes, our guide team will be working hard to be sure each kid has their best possible experience, full of fun times and memories to hold far into the future, and the opportunity to grow into better versions of themselves. We are all so happy to be here and can’t wait to report back for the next trip update!


 Jack and our wonderful guide team. 



Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions was started in 2010 as a graduate thesis for my Master's Degree in Environmental Conservation Education at NYU. The operating premise was simple - by coupling amazing wilderness fly fishing camps for teens with environmental education and service learning we can help inspire future generations of fly fishing conservationists. We have been growing our unique list of trips and experiences ever since.

When it comes to choosing a summer program for your teen the options are endless. For the teen who loves to fish, be outside, and has a strong sense of adventure we have made the choice easy. We are the leader in teen fly fishing adventures and are dedicated to providing the best backcountry fly fishing experience with opportunities for teens to engage in leadership training, community service, and backcountry camping.


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Will Lillard, Founder/Director/Guide

Contact Us

[email protected]

Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions
2540 King Road
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768

(828) 577-8204