At The Denver Fly Shop, masters of fly-fishing's elusive art lead classroom instruction, field sessions, and guided trips with a proficient grasp on the sport's intricate ins and outs. Through classroom sessions, the crew teaches students how to tie essential knots and how to mimic the movement of insects. They also offer in-depth knowledge on locations where fish have been known to hangout and mingle with delinquent trout-school dropouts. Their casting lessons familiarize anglers with their gear during two-hour sessions that take place indoors during winter months and on the banks of Smith Lake in Washington Park when spring sets in. Once their intro lessons are complete, students can put their newfound proficiencies to the test during guided fishing trips to some of Colorado’s most abundant waterways.
There is also a comprehensive fly-fishing shop with over 3000 different fly patterns to complement fly fishers' ventures beyond their intro lessons. Guided tours are also offered to explore the area.
At Colorado Handgun Shooting School, NRA-certified instructors Sherry and Jon Vargason make safety the focus of every class, whether they're working with a first-time student or a seasoned T-shirt cannon operator. They teach at The Shootist Pistol Range, leading classes such as the NRA Basic Pistol Shooting Course and a concealed-handgun course that qualifies students to apply for state concealed-handgun permits. To help clients feel as comfortable as possible, Sherry and Jon also organize women-only classes, as well as private one-on-one instruction.
Having multiple firearm bays means BluCore's instructors—who have backgrounds in law enforcement, special ops, and competitive shooting—can dedicate one bay to training while keeping the other open for public shooting or special events such as ladies' night. A variety of combat-proven training classes cover topics for students of all abilities, from the NRA Basic Pistol Class to women-only classes. BluCore's facilities also offer a retail store, where the staff helps customers choose firearms and accessories from manufacturers such as Glock and Sig Sauer.
The staff of Family Shooting Center maintains a public outdoor range, where shooters of all skill levels can hone their firearms proficiency. A day in the trapshooting area challenges sportsmen with pedestal traps, ATA automatic traps, and five-stand sporting clay stations. Alternatively, pistol and rifle ranges offer marksmen targets up to 100 yards away. The facility's multitude of shooting styles also includes an archery range that lets bowmen hone hunter's vision sharper than Davy Crockett's, even after he got LASIK.
To further develop responsible firearms operators, instructors lead classes that range from basic safety courses to private instruction for law-enforcement officials. Safety and camaraderie are further encouraged through trapshooting leagues and special rates for Boy Scouts. When hunger starts affecting concentration, an onsite vendor refuels guests with fare such as hot dogs, pulled pork, and gourmet bratwursts made from game meats.
Shannon oversees a guide service manned by a staff of veteran fly-fishing experts. On full-day and half-day fly-fishing trips, guides lead anglers for the grand slam: rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, brown trout, and brook trout all caught in a single trip. The Rocky Mountain landscapes surround fishermen in dramatic scenery, including towering pine trees, giant red rocks, and bright-blue skies as the sounds of colliding bighorn sheep occasionally ring out over the water. In addition to guided trips, the staff also leads classes, including courses designed for women and families, that cater to both beginner and advanced anglers.
"Equip. Prepare. Practice." That's the motto at Centennial Gun Club, where instructors lead courses that range from beginner firearms training to advanced tactical skills. Beyond demonstrating how to use handguns and rifles, they teach open-hand combat courses and women's-only classes in self defense. An onsite gun range accommodates live-fire training as well as the occasional special event, such as bowling-pin shoots.