Fish and fishing of Lewis & Clark showcased in online exhibit

Ever wonder how the fishing was for Lewis and Clark?

Pretty good, as you might imagine. In fact, Lewis and Clark relied heavily on fish to survive their expedition across the unknown tracts of what was to become the continental United States – and they had some sport at it, too.

And now a major exhibit of the fishing experiences of Lewis and Clark – originally created by the Federation of Fly Fishers as a physical exhibit with large-format panels displayed in its fly fishing museum in Livingston, Mont. – has been adapted into an interactive virtual tour at

The adaptation of the physical display to the World Wide Web was performed by Keokee, a media and marketing firm in Sandpoint, Idaho. Keokee also publishes the Federation of Fly Fishers’ national magazine, Flyfisher.

FFF’s project coordinator, Leah Elwell, said the exhibit was originally created in 2005 for display at the FFF’s Fly Fishing Discovery Center in Livingston. After downsizing their operations, the FFF found a new home for the exhibit with the Missouri River Basin Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center and Trails. The Missouri River Basin Center focuses on the scientific and biological aspects of the Expedition and serves as an ideal location for the physical exhibit.

Elwell said the creation of an online exhibit was completed in order to share with a greater number of people the fascinating information about the fish and fishing that Lewis and Clark encountered in the continent’s virgin wilderness.

“Undaunted Anglers is the only exhibit that focuses on all aspects of fishing related to the Expedition,” noted Elwell. The new site, provides a virtual look at 100 panels of graphics created for the physical display, with beautifully articulated text, illustrations and photographs. Detailed information regarding fish species, methods used to catch fish and relationships with Native Americans who were versed in fish and catching them are major themes throughout the exhibit.

“The challenge for us was to convert these existing beautiful large-format graphics from the original exhibit into something that anyone with an Internet connection could view, browse through and zoom in to read or see,” said Keokee president Chris Bessler. “And what a neat project. For any fisherman or woman who’s ever daydreamed about how the fishing might have been before the country was settled, it gives an amazing historical perspective.”

Also featured at are educational resources for both educators and the public to enjoy, including a virtual adaptation of an educational booklet for middle school-aged students describing the fish and fishing of Lewis and Clark, curriculum to incorporate fish and fishing information as seen through the eyes of the Expedition, and current information on the conservation of fish species that Lewis and Clark recorded. The project was made possible with funding by the National Park Service Lewis and Clark Historic Trail.

To see more go to The Federation of Fly Fishers is a 38-year-old non-profit that is dedicated to conserving, restoring and educating through fly fishing. You can learn more about the Federation of Fly Fishers at

Share this Post

Scroll to Top