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ZachMatthews
06-10-2010, 03:00 PM
Byron -

Loved the Fishing Report today (even more than normal). In a way, this is a situation somewhat like when a criminal is on the loose. In fact that's exactly what it is.

You mentioned placing a deterrent sign at the trailhead of Lynn Camp Prong trail. I think that's a great idea. I believe the sign should be put up as soon as possible, even if someone just prints a flyer and tacks it up out there until a permanent one can be printed. The most important thing is to alert other hikes and trail users to be on the lookout.

This stocker most likely operated by horseback, correct? No matter what, he had to have the equipment to get a stocker-sized (i.e. 9-14" rainbow) into the backcountry. That suggests a pretty decent sized cooler or at least a backpack full of water.

Does anyone know how stocker rainbows are usually sold? Could it possibly be by the dozen? If eleven fish have been shocked up so far, that suggests more than one stocking or possibly one big "dozen".

In light of the coverage given on this site and over on the News-Sentinel site, you can bet your butts the stocker knows his fish have been found. And that means he will probably strike again.

My suggestion would be for the sign to say something like this:

NOTICE

This stream is the subject of an ongoing project to bring back native brook trout. Hundreds of volunteers from all over Tennessee and surrounding states have donated their time, money, and effort to this project for more than three years. More than $250,000.00 of volunteer donations and state and federal tax dollars have been spent so far.

RESTOCKING OF NON-NATIVE FISH (INCLUDING RAINBOW AND BROWN TROUT) IS A VIOLATION OF STATE AND FEDERAL LAW AND MAY BE PUNISHABLE BY SEVERE FINES, LOSS OF HUNTING AND FISHING PRIVILEGES, AND POTENTIAL JAIL TIME. 16 U.S.C.A. 3; T.C.A. 70-2-212.

If you see someone with a cooler in the backcountry, politely ask if you can have a look inside. If you pass a fellow hiker and hear water sloshing in a backpack, politely ask if you can have a look inside.

If you notice any suspicious activity, PLEASE REPORT IT IMMEDIATELY.

PARK RANGERS ARE STANDING BY AT (---) --- - ----.

The safety of our public rivers depends on YOU. Turn in poachers and game law violators!

I don't think the project is ruined, either. I liked the upbeat tone of the Fishing Report a lot. But if those rainbows keep getting put back, this project will fail.

A trail warden would be a great idea, but I have another one. Why don't you see if Steve Moore will agree to close the gate by the Tremont Institute at night and have a patrol swing by there at random intervals. That way, you can be pretty certain the perpetrator will have to operate in the daytime, when people will be around to pay attention.

Zach

GrouseMan77
06-10-2010, 05:04 PM
A trail warden would be a great idea, but I have another one. Why don't you see if Steve Moore will agree to close the gate by the Tremont Institute at night and have a patrol swing by there at random intervals. That way, you can be pretty certain the perpetrator will have to operate in the daytime, when people will be around to pay attention.

Zach - Unfortunately Mr. Moore does not have near the authority needed to close that gate. During my last volunteer effort, it was brought up that the fisheries guys could not camp at a particular backcountry site due to bear activity.

One of the other volunteers asked if they were allowed to set up camp in non designated areas since they are park employees doing work for the park. The reply was that they are under the same rules as you and I and the red tape was way to thick.

If you did close the gate there would also be an issue of people using the parking area for backcountry camping trips.

jeffnles1
06-10-2010, 09:12 PM
Bringing those rainbows in there was just wrong. I loved fishing Lynn Camp. It was one of the favorite stretches of water Daniel and I fished and we were sad to see it being closed for the next several years. However, gringing brookies back to that stretch brings exciting possibilities for future fishing trips.

Sorry to hear it. Hope the fisheries guys can get it straightened out.

Jeff