April Meeting – Dean Naujoks (Potomac Riverkeeper)

Dean Naujoks from the Potomac Riverkeeper Network will discuss the condition of the Potomac River, our club’s namesake, as well as inform of us of additional ways we can help protect the river for future generations. Hope you can join us, as this should prove to be a very informative meeting.

  • WhereMcLean Community Center – Stedman Room, 1234 Ingleside Ave, McLean, VA 22101
  • When: April 27, 2016 at 7:30 pm (doors open at 7:00 for socializing)
Dean Naujoks (Potomac Riverkeeper Network)
Dean Naujoks (Potomac Riverkeeper Network)

About Dean

Dean Naujoks, who joined the Potomac Riverkeeper Network in 2015 as the Potomac Riverkeeper, will speak to the April 27 meeting of the Potomac River Smallmouth Club.

Dean has over 20 years of environmental non-profit experience. He began his non-profit career in 1991 with the North Carolina Wildlife Federation. After graduating from North Carolina State University, with a self-created degree in Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development, he was hired as the first Upper Neuse Riverkeeper, serving from 2001 to 2008. He became the first Riverkeeper on the Yadkin River with Yadkin Riverkeeper, Inc. in 2008, also serving as Executive Director until 2014.

Dean was awarded River Network’s 2009 National River Heroes Award. River Network’s River Heroes Award celebrates rivers and those who protect them by recognizing victories and honoring those who provide leadership and inspiration along the way. Yadkin Riverkeeper also won the 2011 North Carolina Wildlife Federation Governor’s Achievement Award Water Conservation Organization of the Year.

Commenting on his work, Dean said: “Clean water is a fundamental human right.  The greatest legacy we can leave for our children is access to clean water. Safe-guarding the Nation’s River, which provides drinking water to approximately 7 million people, is a serious responsibility.”

As the Potomac Riverkeeper, Dean is responsible for watching the issues of the Potomac River from Harpers Ferry to Point Lookout. He considers the biggest issues are nutrient pollution, agricultural runoff, storm water runoff, and sewage overflows, primarily from old sewage plants in Washington, D.C.

According to Dean, the biggest problem of the future is coal ash pollution, largely from Dominion Power holding facilities at Possum Point on Quantico Creek, a tributary to the Potomac, and at Bremo on the James River, among other places. Dean, the Potomac Riverkeeper Network, and several other environmental organizations are doing their best to ensure that more untreated coal ash waste is not dumped into the Nation’s River. This waste will only further damage the Potomac and the Chesapeake Bay.

March Meeting – C. T. Campbell

Our monthly meeting at the McLean Community Center will feature speaker C.T Campbell of Page Valley Fly Fishing Service. C. T. will discuss the fishing habitats of both trout and smallmouth bass, share some of his fishing fly-fishing techniques, and comment on recent Shenandoah River fish kills. This ought to prove to be an exciting evening for both fly and spin fishing enthusiasts.

  • WhereMcLean Community Center – Stedman Room, 1234 Ingleside Ave, McLean, VA 22101
  • When: March 30, 2016 at 7:30 pm (doors open at 7:00 for socializing)
C. T. Campbell
C. T. Campbell (right) of Page Valley Fly Fishing Service

About C. T. Campbell

C.T. Campbell is a native of Luray, Virginia, and has over 30 years of fly fishing experience and over 15 years of experience as a fly fishing instructor and guide. He worked in the Shenandoah National Park for 35 years, so he knows it well.

C. T. is a member of the Northern Shenandoah Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited and a member of the Friends of the Shenandoah River. His love of fly fishing and knowledge of the local area and wildlife provides a well-rounded, enjoyable fly fishing experience for all levels of fly fishermen.

One satisfied customer declared: “C.T. Campbell is THE guide for native brook trout fishing in the Shenandoah National Park.  He’s enthusiastic, patient, knows the fish, plants, and animals of the National Park and, most importantly, he’s an awfully nice guy who is excited to show others around his backyard. I have been fishing in the Blue Ridge Mountains for years, but one day of guided fishing with C.T. renewed my appreciation for Virginia’s beautiful Piedmont and the spectacular native trout that call it home. C.T. will get you hooked.”

Page Valley Fly Fishing Service offers personalized, guided catch and release fly fishing trips for people of all experience levels. C.T will also take you fishing for smallmouth bass on the South Fork of the Shenandoah River, or fishing for mountain brook trout in select private brook trout water locations in the Shenandoah Valley.  He provides all flies and leaders as well as instruction, as needed. He can be reached at (540) 743-7952.

February Meeting – Ernie Rojas

Long-time club member Ernie Rojas will talk about his favorite fishing spots across the U.S. and beyond, including outings on the Potomac River, to the Chesapeake Bay and tributaries, and to South Florida.

  • WhereMcLean Community Center – Stedman Room, 1234 Ingleside Ave, McLean, VA 22101
  • When: February 24, 2016 at 7:30 pm (doors open at 7:00 for socializing)
Ernie Rojas
Ernie with a nice Chesapeake Bay striper

About Ernie

Ernie Rojas was born in Havana, Cuba. Ernie came to the United States in 1960 when he was 9 years old. He became a US citizen and has been living in Northern Virginia since his arrival. He proudly served in the US Navy Reserve from 1972 to 1978.

His first memories of fishing are off a pier at the Havana Yacht Club. He doesn’t remember what he caught his first times out. But later he fished out of a rowboat off Varadero Beach, a long isthmus that juts into the sea pointing at Florida, and caught some great snappers. He claims, “I had no clue what I was doing,” but like today, he was putting fish in the boat.

Ernie’s grandfather, who he never got to meet, was a shark fisherman.

While Ernie started fishing at a young age, and it was always enjoyable, it wasn’t until he started fishing with his friend Carl in 1984 that he became a passionate fisherman and fishing became a lifestyle. Carl made fishing an “excursion.” Everything about it was to be enjoyed. Riding in the car, getting breakfast, being skunked, or catching tons of fish. Everything was a memorable event, and today Ernie follows the same philosophy. Carl passed away 5 years ago, and in memory of his good friend, Ernie tries to instill his passion for fishing in others.

Ernie says that he is probably happiest when fishing for white perch, which he calls “the Carl influence.” Catching a 12-incher is a “monster.” He says that the largest fish he has ever caught were a mid-40s tarpon and striper as well as a 50+” wahoo. He explains that he doesn’t measure and weigh fish much anymore, except white perch, where a 1/4″ makes a big difference.

Ernie caught his first fish with a hand line and a bait-less hook when he was 6 or 7 years old. Now he uses St. Croix and Loomis rods, Shimano spinning reels and Abu Garcia Revo baitcasting reels with artificial bait, and likes to throw the long rod as well. There are not too many species that he won’t chase. He says that his favorite lures are soft plastics, jigs, and top-water plastics. He adds that most are interchangeable in concept.

So don’t miss our February 24 meeting, as it will be a very special night with Ernie.