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Meeting Minutes – October 11, 2023

Little Elkhart Chapter of Trout Unlimited

Meeting Attendees

     Tom Vanderputten   Keith Loutzenhiser    Mark Holcomb   Ridge Holcomb   Jim Mauck

     Brandon Rasler   Wayne Andrews

Meeting Minutes

  • The meeting minutes for September 13, 2023 were approved.

Fishing Reports

  • The Little Elkhart has caddis hatching with regularity. Early morning top action is good. Soft hackle/wet fly swing working well in shallow riffles.
  • County Rd. 35 and Corson Park small leaches in the woods.

 Treasurer’s Report

  • Keith reported spending $ 36.21 on hooks for future fly tying.
  • The combined balances in Everwise and Interra at the end of  September was $ 27,125.35

A-A-T Donations

  • $2,500 will be sent to the following two organizations: 

Curtis Creek Trout Rearing Station c/o Riley Schubert, 4250 E. 410 North, Howe IN 46746              

Elkhart Conservation Club c/o Charlie Horswell, 30121 Old U.S. 20, Elkhart IN 46514

Web-Site (

  • Brandon Rasler attended the meeting. He reported the Domain Name has been paid.
  • Brandon has posted the meeting minutes. The gmail calendar on the site should show future events.
  • Brandon further stated he will post information if it is sent to him.

Corson Riverwoods Park(reprinted from the September Meeting Minutes)

  • Mike and Tom V meet with Rhonda DeCaire. Discussion ranged from river conditions to the IDNR electro-fishing survey results.
  • The major issue is the procedure to submit the Citizens Petition to enlarge the Catch/Release area to include Corson Riverwoods Park. Rhonda will investigate then have another meeting to write and submit the proposal.
  • LECTU can anticipate a property owners meeting to present the Catch/Release philosophy to them. LECTU needs to convince them it is best for them and their property.

LECTU  Fly Tying/Education Sessions

  • Rhonda (Elkhart County Parks) has requested that LECTU has a fly tying and fly fishing classes at Bonneyville Mill Schoolhouse, and fly fishing classes at Cobus Creek Park. Keith has been in contact with Denny from the Elkhart County Parks and will report at a future meeting regarding a fly tying day and a Fly Fishing 101 class.
  • The dates have been set for fly tying classes at the Middlebury and Bristol Libraries in 2024.
  • The sessions will be the Middlebury Library 1st Saturday of the month January to April.
  • The sessions at the Bristol Library will be the 2nd Saturday of the month January to April.

Camera for LECTU

  • Mark reported that $ 500 is not enough for the quality of camera needed to project fly tying, and future LECTU usages.
  • The membership at the meeting approved an expenditure of $ 1,000 for a camera, case, cables, etc. This would be used with the Library overhead projector.

Trout Habitat

  • Mike is working with Matt Horsley (Indiana DNR) on a plan to restore bank cover at the Rowe Eden (from U.S. 20 to the Little Elkhart Confluence). 
  • The next step is a meeting with the Elkhart County Surveyors Office.
  • The information immediately below is a summary of the plan

Summer Work Days for Trout Habit Restoration (2024)

  • Mike has drawn a comprehensive plan for the Rowe Eden Ditch from US 20 to the confluence with the Little Elkhart. This will be submitted to IDNR Fisheries and the Elkhart County Surveyors.
  • The Schwartz brothers are willing to help restore the curves for trout habitat and to prevent erosion. They are willing to cut and stack logs this winter in preparation for summer 2024.
  • The project includes six significant curves. This is a major project involving 50-60 logs, cabling, use of natural roots, earth anchors, etc.
  • Mike and Matt Horsley (Indiana State Biologist) inspected this section. Matt reviewed the LECTU work at the Yoder farm meadow, and is in full support of the Rowe Eden Project.
  • Matt will set a meeting with the state, and Mike will present the plan

Reel Recovery(Reprinted from August Minutes)

  • Ted Larrison introduced the topic of “Reel Recovery” an organization for men recovering from cancer. 
  • Ted talked of past retreats in other states that he has either been involved with or managed.

Ted would like LECTU to sponsor an event in Indiana. LECTU will continue to discuss this possibility at future meeting.

Derby City TU

  • Mike presented a ZOOM presentation for the Louisville TU Chapter on September 26th.
  • The topic was “Saving a Trout Fishing” and highlighted LECTU and The Little Elkhart.

Annual Outing 2024 

  • Possible Speakers:
  •  Mark Luttenton (2019 Speaker) Associate Dean at Grand Valley State, Prof. of Biology, Annis  Water Resources Institute .
  • Dominic Chaloner, Biologist University of Notre Dame, Enviro Tile Project on Cobus Creek at the Elkhart Conservation Property.
  • Tom Vanderputten will contact and report at the next meeting.
  • Mike will order a rod and reel for the raffle prize.

New Business

  • Keith has ordered new LECTU fly boxes and fly cups.
  • Keith will order the next 4 years of new LECTU hats.
  • Jerry Rea donated several books on Fly Fishing to LECTU for sale at the 2024 outing.
  • In addition one book was donated to the Middlebury Library.

Library Key Pickup

  • Wayne, Keith, and Mike have been listed by the Library being able to secure a building key for our monthly LECTU meetings. One of them will pick up the key prior to Wednesday of the meeting.

LECTU Meeting Place and Date

  • Middlebury Library in downtown Middlebury IN.

Next Meeting – Wednesday – November 8, 2023

Tom Vanderputten – LECTU Secretary