Surviving Siblings Pacific Northwest Fishing Retreat

add to outlook calendar add to gmail calendar October 19 - 23, 2022
Forks, Washington
Entry Form Open from August 1, 2022 to August 14, 2022

In accordance with the most current information available, as of May 1, 2022, TAPS lifted the requirement to provide proof of full vaccination to attend in-person events. We will continue to monitor COVID variants and we may adjust protocols to ensure safe and healthy gatherings. These adjustments could once again include requiring proof of full vaccination and/or a negative COVID test. 

All surviving siblings and siblings-in-law grieving the loss of a loved one who served in the U.S. Armed Forces are warmly invited to join the 2022 TAPS Pacific Northwest Fishing Retreat as we explore the wilderness of our earth and of our grief alongside our fellow survivors. These therapeutic, outdoor skills-based events are led by both TAPS facilitators and professional outdoor guides through some of the world's most inspiring landscapes.


Trout Fishing

northwest washington

Pacific Northwest

Pacific Northwest Tree of Life



Join TAPS as you and your fellow survivors immerse yourselves in the Olympic National Park, connecting with the land and waters, through the healing power of fly fishing. In partnership with the National Park Trust, Trout Unlimited and Oly Women on the Fly Guide Service, TAPS will lead you on an incredible journey along the Pacific coastline and in Olympic National Forest opening our hearts to healing for the mind, body and soul.

At TAPS we understand that all survivors share a powerful bond grieving a loss, and a uniquely special bond is formed within each population. At TAPS, we extend the offer to all survivors of military loss, so in hosting our siblings' retreats we invite our siblings-in-law to apply for attendance, as well.

Through this partnership with the National Park Trust and Trout Unlimited, we rely on our qualified volunteer guides at Oly Women on the Fly Guide Service and Trout Unlimited for their expertise in fishing education and supporting our physical safety in a variety of outdoor spaces. 



Day 1:  On this travel day, everyone should arrive at Kalaloch Lodge in Forks, Washington by 5 p.m. TAPS staff will be there to greet you and get you checked in. We’ll have an opportunity that evening to get settled in, meet fellow survivors, enjoy dinner together, and relax.

Day 2:  We’ll start the day with breakfast, get an overview of what to expect, and we’ll work together to get our questions answered and build our team. We will work with volunteers from the Oly Women on the Fly Guide Service and the Kitsap - Olympic Peninsula Trout Unlimited Chapter to learn the ins and outs of fly fishing in Olympic National Park, get acquainted with gear, and enjoy time together along the coast. We’ll wrap up with a group dinner in the evening.

Day 3: The third day will include time fly fishing in Olympic National Parkas well as some free time to relax and further connect with your fellow surviving siblings and siblings in law.

Day 4: On our final day of activities, we'll have the opportunity for another full day of fishing activities on the property and in the National Park, and, then, we'll wrap up our time together to reflect on our new connections and our next journeys ahead.

Day 5: We'll say our “see you laters” and travel home. 



This retreat is rated as a medium-intensity adventure. We'll be active and everyone will have an opportunity to challenge themselves. Activities will involve light physical exertion. Much of our time will be spent outdoors fly fishing and enjoying the incredible scenery of the Pacific Northwest. There will also be time to relax and connect with one another.



All trip fees and fishing equipment to be utilized from Wednesday evening through Sunday afternoon are covered by TAPS thanks to our generous donors. 

Trip fees not noted above are your pre/post retreat transportation costs, meals outside of events, guide gratuities and outdoor gear (not including fishing equipment) are to be secured on your own.



Thanks to the generosity of TAPS partners and donors, lodging at Kalaloch Lodge is provided for all attendees from Wednesday, October 19 through Sunday, October 23, 2022.

You'll need to cover the cost of your transportation to and from Kalaloch Lodge in Washington, as well as lodging outside of the dates which TAPS provides. The closest airport is Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA). 

If your application is approved, we will ask you to officially register for this event.  Only after you have completed your registration and receive the welcome email should you make your travel plans.  Please do not make travel arrangements until your participation is confirmed.



Entry forms will be open from August 1 to August 14, 2022 (look for the blue button at the top of this page at that time). TAPS will review all applications and communicate selection of participants no later than August 16. If more entry forms are received than we have slots available, TAPS will host a random selection from qualified entries. 

This retreat is being put together through a partnership with the National Park Trust and Trout Unlimited. Through this partnership, we rely on our qualified volunteer guides at Trout Unlimited for their expertise in fishing education and supporting our physical safety in a variety of outdoor spaces. Visit the National Park Trust and Trout Unlimited for more information.

If you have any questions, please email or call 800-959-TAPS (8277).


Retreat Facilitators

Rachel Hunsell


Rachel Hunsell

Rachel has a background in experiential program development and facilitation, outdoor engagement, event management and public speaking. As the TAPS Outdoor Programs Manager, she develops, implements, enhances and supports programming across the TAPS network, fostering the connection of our grief journeys to the therapeutic power of nature and the wilderness. Understanding life's challenges will always arise, Rachel encourages survivors to reconnect with their inner strength by creating emotionally safe and understanding environments. As a survivor honoring the life and death of her brother, Marine Lance Corporal J. Kyle Price, she understands the valleys and mountaintops we experience along the journey after loss. The military community is both Rachel’s personal and professional home, where her efforts are directed in helping the community heal their trauma and grow through pain. Rachel obtained her Bachelor of Science in Mass Communication with an emphasis on Public Relations from Southeast Missouri State University in 2013. She is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Education with a degree in Recreation Therapy at Southern Illinois University - Carbondale, where she also served as a Graduate Assistant at Touch of Nature Outdoor Education Center serving Southern Illinois veterans.

Erin Jacobson


Erin Jacobson, Director, Women's Empowerment

Within the past decade, Erin has built transformative programming within the retreat and seminar programs with an emphasis in women’s empowerment, art, mindfulness and nature based healing. At the heart of her workshops and programs is the desire to create spaces where survivors can feel safe to explore the difficult questions surrounding identity and purpose after loss. Erin resides in the Pacific Northwest and is the surviving partner of Army Ranger Cpl. Jason Kessler. Along with a degree in counseling, her educational background includes nonprofit leadership, religious studies and art history.