Maxine McCormick is already a fly-fishing legend. But how can a 15-year-old make her way through a world dominated by retirees? 

People over 40 make up more than half of all anglers, and men still make up two-thirds of them. Millennials and Gen Zers are rare. In Oregon, the older men are a mass of technical jackets and denture-white smiles. They have seen Maxine cast. They are astonished. 

To most people in her life, Maxine is not a world champion. She is a teenager in jeans and sneakers with blond hair. She’s a good big sister to Tobi. She spends long car rides staring at her phone and laughing hysterically at… something. 

Photographed at The Golden Gate Angling & Casting Club in San Francisco, Calif. for Outside Magazine.

Text by Chris Wright.

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