Welcome! We’re Dave & Amelia Jensen, a couple of fly fishers from Alberta, Canada. We’ve been around for some time, having considerable involvement and contribution to fly fishing in western Canada, with international influence though we like to be under-stated. We made the decision to live and breathe fly fishing years ago. Home to us, the feeling of connection, fulfillment, joy, anticipation, and wholeness derives from our life spent on the water… together.
In 1997 we embarked on our fly fishing career. After nearly 20 years guiding and back country lodge ownership & operations, we decided to develop the fly fishing visual art we’ve been producing throughout that time, based on our fly fishing experience. Our aim is to produce aspirational, inspirational, artistic, and educational media through authentic fly fishing – we enjoy sharing our fly fishing as it unfolds, actually happens, through video, photography, prints, and watercolor.
While we love fly fishing, it’s the opportunity of capturing moments through our camera that drives our desire to be on the water. Trout come and go but the moments that we enjoy are those that live on through the lens. We try to shoot video and photos as legitimately as possible and edit them in the same spirit, not dominating with heavy edits. While fishing, we only carry what we would while fishing, a simple tri-pod, camera with a spare lens and batteries. If it doesn’t fit in our pack, it ain’t coming with us. We fish 6 to 15 hrs in a day and we may cover 10 – 35km of walking daily. There’s always a neat moment or two in every day, 150 to 200 days a year in Alberta or New Zealand. It’s simply a rod, light pack, lunch, and camera.
When the snow flies in Alberta, Canada, we travel 2 – 3 months each year to fly fish New Zealand, where we travel modestly in a somewhat camperized 4×4 van with our raft and mountain bikes. We spend a lot of time poking various valleys and watershed, dissecting one valley to the next as there’s always hidden springs and tributaries to explore. Our time is simple there, have a morning cup of coffee while visiting pukekos, fantails, bell birds, etc before heading out. The day always brings a wonderful moment or two to capture on video. At the end of each day 1 to 3 hrs are spent clipping out the scenes in the back of the van.
To share some of our fly fishing community involvement:
- We owned & published the Alberta Fishing Guide Magazine for 4 years, 2014 – 2017 inclusively. It’s Alberta’s largest and long-running outdoor magazine; an annual publication that sells 25K copies since it began in 1971. We took on this publication when our close, dear friend and magazine’s originator Barry Mitchell received a terminal diagnosis. We gave the magazine publishing world our best shot and enjoyed our time updating a few aspects of the magazine while honoring and continuing Barry’s legacy.
- Our involvement with the Orvis Company began in the early 2000’s as long-time friend Jim McLennan, who has had close ties to Orvis in the past, introduced us to the good folks at Orvis. Our relationship with Orvis began through the Orvis Endorsed Guides, Lodges, Outfitters program, through which we won several awards. We have since been quite involved with the Orvis Field Testing for rods, waders, boots, packs, clothing, etc. Amelia is part of Orvis’ Women in Leadership program, it’s goal to engage more women in fly fishing. We have both been featured as Orvis Trout Bums of the week. Amelia. Dave. Amelia had a great interview with Tom Rosenbauer of Orvis regarding women in fly fishing, what guiding is really like. Listen here. We’ve had considerable footage used in the Orvis “Learn To Fly Fish” education center in conjunction with Colin McKeown of the New Fly Fisher. In 2016 – 17 we also have helped develop Orvis’ MASTER-CLASS MONDAY advanced tactics for their learning center.
- We lobbied to have our home cutthroat trout river, the Ram River, designated catch & release in 1998. We have been able to influence angling regulations on various lakes and streams in Alberta based on habitat considerations. We continue to be involved in Fisheries Management Committees for the Red Deer River as well as regional level fisheries management issues. Dave is a member of the Alberta provincial round table. We’ve had influence on several other regional waters’ regulations.
- The summer of 2015 in Alberta saw intense drought & heat. Dave pursued the Emergency Trout Streams Closures through the provincial level Fisheries Round Table Sub-Committee in 2016. It’s an imperfect and not as far-reaching model that will be employed by the Alberta government and a trial at that, but it’s better than having open-ended “feel” parameters moving forward, though if 2017 is any indication, the Alberta government has no plans to follow a plan that it largely rammed down our throats.
- Dave began lobbying the AB government in 1999 to re-visit the Red Deer R Mgt Plan. Through countless meetings and re-shifting of gov priorities, a RDR Mgt Plan Committee was struck. We met once a month for two years before formulating a draft plan in early 2014. That plan has been shelved until the AB gov completes is overhaul of the new “simplified” regulations and implements them in 2017. Hopefully the RDR Mgt Plan can then be implemented by 2020, 20 years after I began my lobby – which should speak volumes about what it takes to lobby for change.
- We assisted our good friend Serge Bonnafoux on New Zealand’s South Island in protecting a small brown trout spawning stream tributary to one of his region’s trophy waters. It was under threat by a local farmer who wanted to dam it and use the water for irrigation and power generation. We supplied the images and video for the successful lobby to stop that project!
- We began the Alberta Streamwatch Conservation Coalition in 2002. It focused on educating anglers about Alberta’s east slope trout stream’s vulnerabilities, their regulations, and ultimately hired enforcement officers through a co-op. The program also addressed land use issues.
- We’ve written many articles for many magazine and have been involved in various tv shows, websites, and other media. Our works (photos, video, articles) have been featured in Fly Fisherman, American Angler, Northwest Fly Fishing, Southwest Fly Fishing, Eastern Fly Fishing, Western Sportsman, Fly Fusion, Alberta Fishing Guide, Home Waters, Fly Fishing the West, Sport Fishing on the Fly, Canadian Fly Fisher, The New Fly Fisher, Orvis Guide to Fly Fishing, Orvis News, Fin-Chasers, and many other international fly fishing magazines and tv productions.
- We produced our Sight-Fishing Trout Rivers DVD in 2012.
- We produced our Stripped Down: The Brown Trout Project in 2014.
- We produced a series of simple productions in the early 2000’s titled “Fly Fishing Alberta’s Hatches”, a slideshow series detailing those opportunities.
- From 1996 to 2006 we hosted the Fly Fish Alberta online Forum, then Canada’s busiest fly fishing forum with 11M hits a month.
- We are long-time fly fishing guides in Alberta, Canada, having guided 20 years on the rivers and streams NW of Calgary.
- We owned and operated a small fly in fly fishing retreat at the incredible brook trout destination of Fortress Lake, BC for 10 years, being recognized for our hospitality with several Awards & Nominations.
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