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chrome-magnon man
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After much discussion with my steelheading friends and peers, and after much reflection, I have decided that my Thompson season has officially ended. I will monitor the Albion counts carefully and consult with WLAP biologists, and if some late fish show up I may reconsider my position, but until such time I will no longer cast a fly into the Thompson this season.

I will be on the river late next week to visit with friends and partake of the river's many pleasures, but I will not fish. I have been asked to do some demonstration casting for an upcoming DVD and will honor that request and cast with a yarn fly or bare leader for a brief period of time, but I will not fish or be otherwise occupying space in a run.

This is a personal choice I have made. I do not expect others to make a similar choice, and I have a neutral position regarding the decisions of others. For me, imprecise as the Albion estimates are, they are our only measure of the run, and if the biologists believe that the fish are threatened then I believe I have an obligation to step out of the water.

At the same time I feel that I also have an obligation to the good folks in Spences Bridge to support them with my dollars and work with them to find a long term solution to the economic impacts of this problem. This is why I have chosen to travel to the river and simply hang out, sip a beer in the pub, enjoy some fine meals at Vicki's, buy some fuel at the PetroCan, and enjoy the company of my friends in the place that defines who I am as an angler.
 

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T

very admirable choice of action! a perfect way to express your true love and devotion to everything involving that river! a wonderful begining to the action ahead! My heart goes out to you and Kush and others.I know how you feel. over the years I have lost rivers with many great memories. Beau
 

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Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
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Very admirable and a win-win all around, discounting your personal sacrifice of course. It seems the river who defines who you are as an angler also benefits from the character of the angler it's defined!
 

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Dana,

As the others have stated, it is admirable what you are doing for your river and I would never try to change your mind on this. However, I may have an alternative for those with less will power than you. When fishing my home waters of the southern Great Lakes. When the conditions are marginal, my friends and I will often break off the points of our hooks before fishing. Of course we will not fish if conditions are too bad. When fishing this way I have never had a fish on for more than a few seconds. If I am lucky I get a good jump and the fish is gone. I do get the satisfaction of knowing that they are there however, and I could cast my rod and fool them. Sometimes this is all we need for a perfect day. Good luck and I hope your river bounces back quickly from whatever is wrong.

Charlie.
 

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Just a thought but you could fish a fly with a broken point.. maybe just enough bend foe a headshake or two.. you could be out on the river enjoying the comeroderie (sp?) of fellow steelheaders and have no chance of causing harm to a ever increasinglt valuable fish.. Anyway just a thought...
 

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PiscatorNonSolumPiscatur
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Dana;

As said before me, your attitude is very admirable. It's the way of thinking that will preserve the resource.
Good on ya!
 

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Speyshop's Speybum
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Well said Dana,

Though I have never been on the Thompson I feel the loss with some many of our great rivers in Pearle and we seem to be at loss to do any thing about it.
 

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Very admirable. I like the pointless hook idea. Perhaps you could take it one step farther and use a bomber and break the hook off at the bend just to get a roll out of the odd one.

I like your dedication though. I fish some Gaspe salmon rivers that don't have the robust runs of the past and always try to go early for the brightest, strongest fish and limit myself to two released, long range or not (long is usually the case).

As a side note some of those Gaspe rivers are having better years since in part because they've instituted more catch and release (as well as some other programs). Hopefully management will keep up the good work there and not go back to the dark days.
 

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Wilson is correct. Some rivers like the Grande, Nouvelle and the three Pabos rivers that have not had good fishable runs for years have come back nicely this past year with very good runs. It’s nice to know about some success stories now and then. And most of it is being attributed to the catch and release policies put in place by the government of Quebec. How often do you here of a government doing something positive for the environment. Lets hope they keep up the good work.
 

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However, Quebec remains the only Canada province that allows killing of large salmon. Some rivers have catch and release during part of the season, others have almost none at all, and a VERY few are total catch and release. Even those, like the Ste. Jean on the Gaspe, have pressure building to open to a kill season next year. Personally, I'll have very little praise for the Quebec government and ZECs until they eliminate almost all killing of salmon. For those who just have to take a couple home, that's why the other provinces have a limited kill fishery for grilse.
 

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Jr. Spey,

That is sadly true. However, it is nice to hear about the victories every so often. And despite the stupidity of letting people keep large salmon, the runs do seem to be getting better on the gaspe in the last few years, especially in the catch and release rivers. Returns are up compared to a few years ago. If we let people know about it perhaps they will take the hint.

Charlie
 
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