Due to given events, a fishing codex seems appropriate to formulate…
‘I am faster than you’
On a recent fishing trip, another angler hastily overtook André and me on a small stream. He told us that he is faster than us. Then he waded straight through our honey hole that we fished. We were not amused to say the least. I asked how far he plans to fish, and he replied while continuing his path of destruction. Needless to say, it was one of the most productive stretches we had planned to fish.
In fact, he was right. He was faster moving than us.We were in stealth-mode, fly fishing in tight quarters. You know, the kind of places most anglers skip to save flies and annoyance.
In contrast, this guy was in a hurry with his Mepps spinner bait size 2 with a treble hook. Tell me about sustainability in a creek barely holding trout over 25 centimetres. For me it is incomprehensible to fish such a creek with treble hooks. Apart from the fact that he had just ruined our favourite place.
Here are three simple rules that would allow everyone to have more of their valuable time at the water.
These rules are adopted from the unwritten rules from New Zealand. The list is not exhaustive, and I am open to suggestions.
1 Talk to each other
Talk to each other, because communication is key to understand one another. Listen and try to understand the other anglers’ plan. Perhaps your schedule allows to fish one after another. In case this is not applicable, try to find a compromise. We all would like to have the best time on the water. As the example shows, by hastily overtaking us without even considering interrupting our honey hole, annoyance is inevitable. So, who has got the right of way?
2 Right of Way
This is very subjective, but in my opinion the person who arrives first has the right to stay at the spot as long as they wish. However, regarding moving parties, it gets complicated. No style of fishing has the right over another one. Hence, it plays no matter whether you move up- or downstream. As soon as you encounter another angler, you should stop and talk to each other. You might even find a new fishing buddy. Who knows?
3 Do not litter (and take rubbish from others with you)
You are a fisher, so you are expected to behave like one. You should care about the environment and look after it. It is your responsibility to look after the river, otherwise no-one does. So, take not only your rubbish with you, but also the litter of other people. Talk to other pedestrians and let them know about the most wonderful hobby on earth. (Fly) Fishing is the easiest way to make a person into an environmentalist.
4 Do not overstay a river or fish when hiking out
This rule is applicable for trips when you hike into the backcountry in the Swiss Alps. In order to allow other angling parties to experience the same magnificent fishery, you should not overstay. Additionally, when hiking out, you should refrain from fishing. You had your time while in the backcountry and in this way other anglers enjoy the same unspoiled experience. This is gentleman style.
This post is a suggestion to improve the current state being. These are only guidelines and every case is different. However, I stress the point that by mutual understanding through communication, much hassle can be avoided. Everyone will profit by adopting these simple rules.
Do you have any suggestions to add to this fishing codex? Let me know on the ExpediTom facebook page or in the comment section below!