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steamnsteel
09-22-2010, 11:08 AM
My brother and I last weekend saw someone carrying a small container of corn up the creek heading for cover:confused: rods and bags in hand preparing for a slaying. Would you make the call and turn them in?

I/we spend time and money to be able to fish the park in the right way and release more than what we keep, but this really hit a sore spot with me and I just thought I would see how some of you felt.

I did do a search but didn't find the relevant thread for this subject.

mattblick
09-22-2010, 11:14 AM
I would call on the spot..

Who has the phone number of appropriate authority to notify?

Trip
09-22-2010, 11:15 AM
I saw a post about this once and someone said the rangers almost don't care because they are usually too busy with traffic and such due to low funding and lack of manpower. It's a shame people can't seem to follow the rules.

NDuncan
09-22-2010, 11:15 AM
Where in the park were you? I have heard (mainly on this site) that calling the parks phone line for this does little or nothing. If I knew where the people were, I would seek out and find the closest ranger.

And if that fails, you could always follow them and then keep throwing rocks into the pools where they are poaching. (probably not a good idea)

from the park website:

Lures, Bait, and Equipment
Fishing is permitted only by the use of one hand-held rod.

Only artificial flies or lures with a single hook may be used. Dropper flies may be used. Up to two flies on a leader.

Use or possession of any form of fish bait or liquid scent other than artificial flies or lures on or along any park stream while in possession of fishing tackle is prohibited. Prohibited baits include, but are not limited to, minnows (live or preserved), worms, corn, cheese, bread, salmon eggs, pork rinds, liquid scents and natural baits found along streams.

Use or possession of double, treble, or gang hooks is prohibited.

Fishing tackle and equipment, including creels and fish in possession, are subject to inspection by authorized personnel.


Please report violators to nearest ranger or to (865) 436-1294.

Jim Casada
09-22-2010, 11:27 AM
steamnsteel--Sadly, the issue of bait fishing, not to mention poaching, use of ilegal lures (treble hooks), and other violations of the fishing regs seems to be of almost no interest whatsoever to Park officials. Most of this was discussed on this forum, in considerable detail, a month or two back. Virtually every post had a tale of woe about poachers, lack of official presence in the backcountry, etc.

I noted that I have been checked only a handful of times in the last three decades, and one of those was by a NCWRC officer, not a Park ranger. Turns out they have jurisdiction in the Park.

Still, I would call, and more to the point, I would try to get a license plate number.
If you got a brush-off from the person who answered the call, I would do the following:
(1) Ask for the name of the person with whom you are talking
(2) Write a letter to the Park superintendent indicating your dismay with the response you got.
If nothing else that would force Ditmansen to address the issue in some fashion.

I realize the Park has plenty of front country issues, but flat-out ignoring lawbreaking is just wrong. It also is an exercise in contradiction--why spend hundreds of thousands on speck restoration and then ignore activities counteracting that effort?

Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

mattblick
09-22-2010, 11:27 AM
Can TWRA /NCWRC not issue citations because it is a National park?

The rangers are spread thin in the park, if these are the only people able to ticket I am surprised more poachers aren't out there.

I found these number for TN, but can't locate a poacher hotline on http://www.ncwildlife.org.

Individuals with information about poachers or poaching activities can contact the TWRA by calling one of the regional offices from 7:00 a.m. until 12:00 midnight, seven days a week.
Telephone numbers for reporting poachers are as follows:
West Tennessee (Region 1) - 1-800-831-1173
Middle Tennessee (Region 2) - 1-800-255-8972
Cumberland Plateau (Region 3) - 1-800-241-0767
East Tennessee (Region 4) - 1-800-831-1174

Edit: I did find NC listed on http://www.fwoa.org/links.html
North Carolina (http://www.sips.state.nc.us/Wildlife/)
1-800-662-7137

Carlito
09-22-2010, 12:39 PM
OR you could use your ninja fly fishing skills to sneak up and steal their corn while they're watching their bobber in the honey hole...

steamnsteel
09-22-2010, 01:13 PM
Cataloochee Valley right in front of one of the park regulation signs they went into the brush, I was making my way back to camp to indulge in gourmet meal.

I had one of the elk volunteers radio for Mark and they told me he was coming fom the Big Creek area. A big tip of the hat for getting the job done with a ticket and a little butt chewing for them also.

I stopped him later when he was making his rounds to ask how things went and he told me the story, I gave him the thumbs up and big yeeehawww!:biggrin:.

Jim Casada
09-22-2010, 02:08 PM
steamnsteel--Now that's good news, and good for you for the action you took. It doesn't have to happen too many times for word to get around.
Jim Casada

psnapp
09-22-2010, 03:14 PM
I just happened to be dressed in ranger-like colors one day while fishing the North River --- dark olive shorts, khaki shirt and a dark olive cap that had a light brown arrowhead patch in front. Happened on a couple of fellows fishing bait back in the heather, and when they saw me, they did some high-steppin' outta there!

kentuckytroutbum
09-22-2010, 04:17 PM
I just happened to be dressed in ranger-like colors one day while fishing the North River --- dark olive shorts, khaki shirt and a dark olive cap that had a light brown arrowhead patch in front. Happened on a couple of fellows fishing bait back in the heather, and when they saw me, they did some high-steppin' outta there!

psnapp-

Great story! Glad you scared the crap out of those meat hunters. Somebody should!

Maybe we should all dress in those colors, and call ourselves The Ranger Auxilliary (spelling?). Why not? I think we have a responsibility to report such blatant violations. The word will get around quick, I guarantee.

Bill

NDuncan
09-22-2010, 04:50 PM
psnapp-

Great story! Glad you scared the crap out of those meat hunters. Somebody should!

Maybe we should all dress in those colors, and call ourselves The Ranger Auxilliary (spelling?). Why not? I think we have a responsibility to report such blatant violations. The word will get around quick, I guarantee.

Bill

Yeah. and take pictures of their vehicles and license plates and even perpetrators (if safely possible) or at least compile a list of written descriptions and post them on a thread here so others will know who to be on the lookout for. I don't think it would probably be wise to attempt a citizen's arrest, or even confront some of them too directly, but this story shows there are options, and we may not win every one, but hopefully can make an overall difference.

kentuckytroutbum
09-22-2010, 07:08 PM
Nduncan-

You're right in that we can quietly take photos, descriptions, license plates, etc. and turn that over to the enforcement agencies. And yes, you don't want to be confrontational with them. No sense letting them know that we're documenting what they're doing. Ya gotta be "cool" about it. Seems like, when I run into people such as this, there is 2 of them, and 1 of me. Not good odds in my book! :frown:

To me, these guys are poaching, and as such, are stealing. They're stealing from you and me, and everyone else who loves the outdoors, and thus live to chase trout in a clear mountain stream or tailwater with only the noise of the wind and rushing water.

Posting on this Forum is a great idea, maybe we can all watch out for these people, and help the rangers build a iron clad case. They may not get any jail time, but hitting them in the wallet with a stiff fine will get their attention.

Bill

fishndoc
09-22-2010, 09:13 PM
I know corn works on fresh-from-the-hatchery-truck stockers, but wild trout?

I like the idea of the khaki ranger look-alike outfit - I am definitely gonna wear similar on my trip this Oct to Nantahala for delayed harvest catching. Last time I was there, several of our "guests" from south of the border were carrying a sheet rock bucket full of trout up the bank to their van.
OTOH, maybe I need to see what kind of uniform INS agents wear.

DarrinG
09-22-2010, 09:35 PM
Nduncan-

You're right in that we can quietly take photos, descriptions, license plates, etc. and turn that over to the enforcement agencies.

Posting on this Forum is a great idea, maybe we can all watch out for these people, and help the rangers build a iron clad case.

I agree with you, Bill. Honest, law-abiding citizens need to be involved in protecting OUR resources just as much as anyone when the opportunity presents itself. Your (and others) post above is great, but not often the case in real life.
I wear a badge and firearm for a living. I've had numerous honest citizens report illegal activities that they have witnessed, which was fantastic. Then when law enforcement acts upon this witnessed information, if an arrest/charge is made and the case goes to court, the defendant, by law, has the right to cross examine any witnesses against him/her. Suddenly, many of those who witnessed and reported the crime(s) suddenly dont want to "get involved" and go to court to testify. Photographs, license plates numbers recorded, etc, etc, are great but in court, the witness who took those photo's and/or other info is often required to be present if the defendant requests a trial. Without the witness and author of the info, these type cases are often dismissed. Often, the reporter of info means well, but obviously their convictions of helping protect our resources/properties, etc, are not as strong as they wanted to believe they were. Just being honest. The Rangers within our Parks cannot be everywhere and often depend on honest citizens to give valuable info to help concentrate their efforts in areas that need a watchful eye the most. If law-abiding sportsmen feel the conviction to take photo's, license plates, etc and report poaching to the Rangers, be prepared to follow the incident all the way through to the end!
I'm sure most honest sportsmen like you guys will follow through and aide the Rangers in the Park (or any law enforcement officer) to the best of your abilities. I dont mean to imply otherwise, but there are indeed plenty of other folks who just dont want the hassle of seeing a poacher prosecuted all the way to a conviction in court.

kentuckytroutbum
09-23-2010, 10:57 AM
DarrinG-

Thanks for your "dose of reality." I know that to be true. I shot USPSA/IPSC matches for over 12 years, and was on the board of the club. A significant number of our members were police officers from the local level all the way up to federal Secret Service agents. After a match, we would go to a restaurant for food & drinks, and I would listen to the police officers talk "shop." They would do all of this hard work to bring the perpetrators to justice, only to have the witness not show up, or end up with a very lenient jury and/or judge. Its got to be frustrating!

If I'm out fishing or hunting, I make it a point to go up and talk to the game wardens, or rangers. I always thank them for being out there checking licenses, creel limits, or game bags. Letting them know that they are appreciated goes along way with them. Alot of times, they have given me some good tips on where to go to chase my game or fish.

Back to your original point, Citizen Apathy is a big part of the problem. If more people were willing to get involved, hopefully there would be less problems such as you face. Perhaps we, as citizens, need to draw a "line in the sand," and say enough is enough. Reporting poachers is one way to do that. IMHO.

Bill

Slipstream
09-23-2010, 01:00 PM
The phone number I have for Park Ranger enforcement is 865 436-1230. For a NC game warden call 800 662-7137.

Owl
09-24-2010, 05:41 AM
"Would you make the call and turn them in?" The only questions that come to mind are: " Are you sure it was bait for fishing( whether corn or worms or whatever)" - and, if so -
"Why would you not turn them in?"

Poachers are as bad as thieves. In fact, come to think of it - they are thieves.

Kentucky, as for your worry about there always being 2 of them and one of you, Mr. Glock can even the odds. That said, I agree that confronting the poachers is the wrong way to go if you can avoid them. Just call it in and let the good guys come and get 'em.

steamnsteel
09-24-2010, 08:22 AM
Owl: I know I did the right thing and felt very good about it when talking with the ranger, I felt even better after finding out that they were caught and ticketed. I was just checking to see what everyones take was, I am sure that Mark observed them using bait and it was rather obvious what they were going to do when I spotted them. I am pretty sure that possesion of illegal bait and lures is enough to warrant a ticket in the park if a ranger was so minded to ticket for it.

I have found worm containers in the backcountry and even off trail above Gatlinburg and in the Little River area.

psnapp
09-24-2010, 06:28 PM
Owl -- will never forget the Flicker and myself meeting up with you and your wife on the Nan! It was a real pleasure for me.

Jeff, I have never confronted you, but I will on this one. Packing Mr. Glock on a fishing trip is just not a reasonable way to deal with poachers, at least not for me. I have gotten myself in a couple of awkward situations back in the wilds but having Mr. Glock at my side would not have been advisable. I have never taken him with me and never will. If things ever get to the point that I feel like I really need Mr. Glock's assistance on a fishing trip, then I will not frequent that stream again, or I will just start fishing the Cross-Eyed Cricket on Sunday afternoons. Life is just too short for me to resort to carrying heat on a fishing trip!

Phil

pmike
09-24-2010, 07:42 PM
I am pushing 55 and for as long as legally able I have always traveled with a handgun for self defense and defense of my family. Sad to say, these days the "safe" or "good" side of town isn't always as safe or good as it used to be.

Places that once seemed fare enough removed from civilization to afford a sense of safety and security, no longer afford such a refuge. The murders of the elderly couple hiking near the Blue Ridge and also the young lady over toward North Georgia, murdered by the same individual just a couple of years ago is proof. Not to mention the fellow just a few years ago that seemed to make it his life's work to murder innocent and unsuspecting hikers along the AT.

The only problem I have encountered with carrying a weapon is my reluctance to leave a gun in my hotel room or in my car. I just refuse to leave a weapon I purchased for my defense, unsecured and available for whoever happens to decide they have a right to burglarize either my car or my room. Not only would I hate to return and find someone with my gun in their hand waiting to rob or harm myself, I would hate and refuse to provide them with a weapon that could be used against others.

I don't see in Owl's post any indication of his intention to act in a vigilante or threatening manner. The way I read his post is that he refuses to surrender to the possible threat of intimidation by those who may be ill intended or threatening. As I read his response, he also advocates dealing with this by reasonable and legal means rather than being or acting as some "trigger happy" self appointed enforcer.

To each his own, if you aren't comfortable or have no desire, see no need, etc to provide for your own defense, that's fine and I won't think any less of you for making that choice. But even you will now be safer because of the recent loosening of restrictions on those who can and do "legally carry". Several years ago In Florida, you may recall the rash of car-jacking type robberies that began taking place near airports and such. When this was researched out by law enforcement it came to light that rental cars and those who were obviously out of state tourists were being intentionally targeted. It later was confirmed by some of the thugs that were caught and explained that with Florida at the time having loosened restrictions on concealed carry by it's citizens, had made it (In their own words) "too risky" to rob locals or folks with Florida plates, because "they might be armed"! As time has progressed and reciprocity between states has widened, affording not only the locals but even the out of state folks to carry, crime dropped overall.

I have unfortunately been in a position of having to defend myself and family from a home invasion. I am thankful I didn't have to take a life, but even more thankful the intruder was unable to harm any of his intended victims. By the way, he knew the house was occupied and had taken the time to cut the phone line...but as he broke the glass on the front door and I invited him to come on in and notified him that I also was holding a gun...he took off running, never again to be seen!

Any and every time I carry my gun, I pray that I will never have need for it's use. However, I also take comfort in knowing that should I need it, it will be there! Most folks I know that carry, also seem to find themselves more aware of and seeking to avoid areas that might be more apt to produce a need for self defense.

In closing, I am thankful for Owl and others who have been proven to be folks that are stable and of good character, that are willing and do take upon themselves the responsibility to not only carry but receive certified training to do so responsibly.

Mike

psnapp
09-24-2010, 09:15 PM
Pmike -- didn't intend any negative reflection on Owl for his position, and I appreciate your respect toward my position. I have a monitored home security system and a couple of loaded weapons in my home to protect my family, so personal protection is important to me. I respect anyone's legal right to carry arms, but I choose not to carry a weapon while pursuing recreational activities. The 2 awkward situations I mentioned in my earlier post were related to wild animals --- one a wild pig with piglets and the other a hunting dog chasing a black bear upstream toward me! Other than those 2 occasions, I have never felt the need to be armed on the stream since I started fly-fishing in 1980.

I do respect the rights of others to legally bear arms wherever, but I do not think that is an effective method for dealing with poachers in GSMNP or any other locale.

Phil

pmike
09-24-2010, 09:29 PM
Hey Phil,

My long-winded point was to simply say that IMHO, Owl wasn't saying or trying to imply that he or anyone would or should use their "Glock" to deal with poachers. Owl or anyone else can correct me if I am wrong about that. What I took from his words was that while he would not invite trouble, he was not defenseless should trouble uninvited arise :)

In some ways i am with you and I would rather not carry a weapon, or perhaps I should say I'd rather not see or feel the need to do so.

Mike

psnapp
09-24-2010, 10:07 PM
Pmike -- we're cool! Hope to meet you on the stream sometime!

Phil

flyman
09-24-2010, 11:53 PM
Yea, lets get those poachers:biggrin: Who knows, the 2 poachers could be armed as well, what now? Make the call, leave the heroics to law enforcement. Bad people scare me, scared people with guns terrify me:eek:

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i206/easterbunny-06/redneck_swiss_army_gun.jpg

pmike
09-25-2010, 09:03 AM
Thanks Phil, sounds good to me!

Mike

Owl
09-26-2010, 09:46 PM
" scared people with guns..." Sorry, don't know anyone like that. All the guys I know that carry daily are alot less "scared" from any potential threat than the people who think a firearm is going to jump out of it's holster and shoot everyone in the area.

What I meant was that legally carrying a weapon for self-defense can keep you from feeling as if you're in danger. It can keep you from having to leave an area, because someone is being a jerk to you. It can also keep you from ending up a statistic. For most people, learning to carry daily for self-protection and all the information and philosophy about self-defense that is inevitably learned along the way increases your awareness of your surroundings. When you're more aware of your surroundings you increase the chances that you'll be ready should a situation come up that may put you in danger. Danger like poachers, drug users, trail criminals, or liberal fishermen who decided to do a little mushroom eating at lunch. You know, whatever.

There really wasn't any reason for anyone to assume that I was making the point for vigilante justice because someone might be poaching a few fish. How ridiculous is that.
I believe I stated that I would call LE and let them deal with it. However, if you decided to approach them and let them know that fishing with bait was illegal and they decided to do you harm, I doubt the bad guys would be so kind as to wait for you to get a cell signal and call the Sheriff. And even if they did, you'd have to ask them to wait another hour or so to give LE time to get there. Does that sound like a reasonable scenario? Maybe the bad guys would suddenly have a change of heart and just sit down on a big rock for a time out?

As absurd as it is, I'm not all that surprised that a few would like to suggest that mentioning a firearm for self-defense translates into a "scared guy" with a gun.

In truth, what I was trying to explain was the following:

You're 4 miles above Elkmont. You meet 3 suspicious looking people on the trail. After they pass you and notice you have $1000 worth of nice flyfishing equipment on you, they let you get 50 yards up the trail and then they turn and follow you at a distance. You stop to adjust your gravel guards or tie a boot lace and notice them closing the distance between you at a high rate of speed, and one of them is now carrying a knife. Your first thought is - " I'm in trouble. What am I going to do now? "

In the minutes that follow, what would you rather have in your hand?

A cell phone? A pocket-knife? A wading staff?

Or a .40 caliber automatic firearm with 12 rounds of 185 grain hollow point defense ammunition?

Maybe you'd rather have a cell phone, because you don't like guns. I have no problem with that, as long as you don't have a problem with not infringing on my right to choose something other than that phone.

jeffnles1
09-26-2010, 11:30 PM
I'll probably regret jumping into this pool.

I just don't think there is a right or wrong answer to the firearm for personal defense debate. Yes, I choose to carry a firearm. I am very well trained in its use, have been trained as a firearms safety instructor and have fired well over 150,000 rounds of ammo in my life. I'm comfortable with firearms and they don't scare me (unless I were to be looking down the barrel of one pointed at me).

Avoiding a fight is always the best action. There's no shame or dishonor in backing away from a fight. I have no desire to bring harm to another human if it can be avoided.

There are those times when someone would want to do harm and the fight cannot be avoided (the scenario Owl mentioned above could well be a time like that).

Is it highly probable? nope. Will most of us go through our lives and never encounter a situation where use of deadly force is required? Yep.

However, most of us have homeowners insurance even though most of us will never have our house burn down. Most of us have liability insurance on our automobiles although most will never be involved in an at-fault accident where personal injury is involved.

We have insurance not to prevent a bad thing from happening, but to help mitigate the risk of exposure should a bad thing happen.

I see carrying a firearm as a type of insurance. It's not going to prevent bad things from happening nor is it going to increase the risk of bad things happening. What it can do is help mitigate the risk to me and my family in the unlikely event something really bad does happen.

Carrying a firearm actually would make me much less likely to argue or get into a fight with someone. I don't want to shoot anybody and as fast as situations can get out of control, I'm much more likely to back away and avoid the fight while carrying.

A person making the choice to not carry a firearm is also a perfectly legitimate decision. It's not for everyone and it's something each individual would need to examine to determine what is the right choice for him/her.

Anyway, like I said, I'll probably regret posting this....

Jim Casada
09-27-2010, 06:05 AM
All--I've hesitated to comment on this thread simply because it is controversial. However, I've finally decided to do so. I'll simply make a few basic points. For starters, the Second Amendment permits firearm ownership. Similarly, federal law now allows properly licensed individuals to carry a weapon in national parks. Those holding such licenses have gone through intensive training, and that training includes detailed coverage of thretening situtions. Like it or not, reality tells us that it is possible, and increasingly so in today's world, to encounter someone with evil intentions while in the Park backcountry. In such situations, you have to rely on your own resources. Whether those resources include carrying a pistol is a personal decision, but it's legal and should not be questioned by others. Personally, I consider folks who have passed concealed carry training to be far safer and more responsible than the population as a whole.

Me? I've handled and owned guns, many of them, all my life. I'm an honest and patriotic citizen (although I did get stopped for going 57 in a 45 mph zone one time).

Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

JoeFred
09-27-2010, 11:50 AM
It could be said I'm not anything if not naïve, and I know we are not dealing with being in a Christmas spirit when it comes to the serious subject of injury or death to innocent people. On the other hand, I think we should take into account the integrity of typical Smokies visitors and the differences in being four miles above Elkmont versus on some of the high risk areas of the Appalachian Trail. From my little bit of research it seems most of the trouble on the AT happens near where road crossings are, because they say the perps are not typically going to get far away from their vehicles or "dens" in the nearby towns. (Even trout are smart enough to hold near both their “food” source and cover, if I may offer a dark analogy.)

I suppose we could start angling in parties of three or more to even out the odds in a confrontation, but then we run the risk of over fishing the streams and worse still, being profiled as bait fisherman ourselves. I know... one guy could carry the one fly rod, one the pepper spray, and the other... just sayin'.

I was an Optimist Club member for many years. (Hmmm, maybe that factors into why I look at things the way I do.) Anyway, our big fundraiser was selling Christmas trees at pretty outlandish prices (for a good cause, of course), but then each night the same pricey trees would remain on an un-guarded lot at a busy intersection. The very few trees that went missing from inventory usually walked off just 1-2 days before Christmas. We chose to believe these went to a good cause as well.

For the record, I've had a 12 guage Winchester for over 40 years and it is at the ready in the event of a home invasion. I hope to one day afford a handgun for use in similar situations. Optimisim can only take one so far.

JF

flyman
09-27-2010, 01:28 PM
We gotta nip this thing in the bud!
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v67/daisypie/BarneyFife.gif

Crockett
09-27-2010, 01:34 PM
Yeah I think common sense should tell you that most perpetrators won't walk 3 miles to kill someone for a fly rod (even a winston). They are usually pretty darn lazy. Now being close to the trailhead you would be more likely to encounter such a situation although probably far less likely than a walmart parking lot. That being said I have a carry permit but my fly rod is only worth $200 so they can have it. I will even give them some nymphs to use. If they are on the little river trail attacking people for fishing gear then I think they probably need it more than I do.

Rebelsoul
09-29-2010, 10:04 AM
Yea, lets get those poachers:biggrin: Who knows, the 2 poachers could be armed as well, what now? Make the call, leave the heroics to law enforcement. Bad people scare me, scared people with guns terrify me:eek:

http://i73.photobucket.com/albums/i206/easterbunny-06/redneck_swiss_army_gun.jpg
One scared person with a gun that I know is the 78 year old lady who lives up the street and has said that she would shoot through the door if she thought somebody was trying to break in...but then she wants me to come to help her in that case.....yeah,sure.:biggrin:
I carry for my self defense,but I'll leave the super hero stuff to the cops...anywhere.
People who do carry have to be very careful when intervening in a bad situation when they're not directly involved...it's a sticky situation at best.

jeffnles1
09-29-2010, 05:48 PM
People who do carry have to be very careful when intervening in a bad situation when they're not directly involved...it's a sticky situation at best.

Yep, wouldn't touch that one with a 10' pole. Myself and my family only. In fact, I couldn't even use deadly force to protect "stuff". Any of my "stuff" they can have as long as they are not threatening harm or endangering my family or myself.

I especially wouldn't want to get involved in someone else's fight. Nothing good can come from that.

As in the old Allman Bros. song - "It's not my cross to bear.":smile:

Jeff

DarrinG
09-29-2010, 07:37 PM
I gotta disagree, at least for myself.
I could never stand by and allow someone else, especially a child, lady or someone elderly, to be robbed or hurt or worse, by some scumbag. Sure I'd protect myself and my family, but I could not say that is all. To stand by idle while something bad is happening to someone else and I could do something to stop it...well....I guess I'd better not say that here. Even if I wasn't armed, I couldn't just stand there and not help someone innocent.

GrouseMan77
09-29-2010, 08:08 PM
We gotta nip this thing in the bud!
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v67/daisypie/BarneyFife.gif

When did they deputize you? They must be desperate on the other side of the mountain.

Jim Casada
09-29-2010, 08:58 PM
Darrin--I pretty much agree, although in truth none of us know (and hopefully will never have to know) precisely how we would react in such a tenuous situation. I know one thing for sure though--I couldn't live with myself and my conscience if I stood by and watched something tragic transpire.
That perspective, a sort of "it's none of my concern" outlook, is to me one of the most roubling things about the world in which we live.
Going back 40-50 years, in the time and place where I grew up and reached adulthood, staunch local citizens would never, ever have turned a blind eye. In that same place, in today's world, they all too often do.
We are or should be our brother's keeper. Not when it comes to nosiness or personal issues, but on matters of kindness, decency, civilized behavior, and what is right.
Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

DarrinG
09-29-2010, 09:32 PM
Thanks Jim. We apparently feel the same way.

I know this is drifting off the original topic, but I have personal experience with someone helping, unexpectedly.

I am a law enforcement officer by trade. One night about 15 years ago, in the wee hours of the morning, I was attempting to arrest a hopped-up-on dope guy in a parking lot of a gas station. This guy felt no pain and we were in an all-out fight. I was getting winded and tired and doing my best to get this guy under control and in handcuffs. I finally managed to get him down and on top of him when out of nowhere I heard a voice behind me say "I'll help you". I looked around, my uniform half torn off, to see a man approaching, holding his hands up. He said again, "I'll help you if you want". I said "Yes!". This guy jumped right in and fought right with me to get this guy in handcuffs. If this fella had not came along, saw the fight and stopped to help, this might have really turned ugly. After we got the guy secured in the back of my cruiser, the man stuck his hand out and I shook his hand. I was completely out of breath. He walked to his truck, got inside and left. I never found out his name or who he was. But I was danged sure glad to see him offer his help to me! I would have liked to bought his breakfast or something, but he left before I could find out anything. I realize he probably saw I was a Officer and what was going on, but by his willingness to help, I feel he would have done it anyhow for someone innocent or helpless, like a woman, child, etc.
My kinda fella.

jeffnles1
09-29-2010, 11:15 PM
I gotta disagree, at least for myself.
I could never stand by and allow someone else, especially a child, lady or someone elderly, to be robbed or hurt or worse, by some scumbag. Sure I'd protect myself and my family, but I could not say that is all. To stand by idle while something bad is happening to someone else and I could do something to stop it...well....I guess I'd better not say that here. Even if I wasn't armed, I couldn't just stand there and not help someone innocent.

Darrin,
In a case that is obvious, yes. However, without knowing the facts, you could end up on the wrong side of the law in a hurry. An example that was given when I went through the concealed carry training was one guy beating up another guy with a club. At the obvious pain being inflicted you step in to break it up. The guy with the stick pulls a gun and you shoot. You later find out the guy with the gun was an undercover police officer and the guy getting hit was wanted on felony drug charges and the police officer was in fact defending his live from this wanted felon. You just landed in jail.

You see a man and woman fighting and from where you sit, it looks like the man is trying to kidnap the child. You step in to protect the woman and child. The man pulls some type of weapon and you shoot him. Later, you find there was a restraining order against the woman for child endangerment and the man was, in fact, trying to prevent the woman from harming his child. You will be the one who goes to jail.

Unless it is you who is being threatened and you're protecting your own life or that of your family or someone with you, getting involved in someone elses' fight and using deadly force can become a very slippery slope.

In these cases, as much as our human emotions may scream, it's better to contact the police.

In cases where it's obvious, yes, but all is not always the way it seems and what you thought was a good deed, could in fact, be the wrong thing to do.

Jeff

dizzyg
10-29-2010, 05:28 PM
I saw no fewer than five adults bait fishing in the park today on Little River in plain view of anyone who cared to drive by. :mad:

Jim Casada
10-29-2010, 05:52 PM
Dizzyg--That really frosts my grits, and an educated guess would be that they were not ignorant outsiders who didn't know any better. If Park offricials studiously ignore such things, lawbreakers (and it is breaking the law) are going to become increasingly brazen.

I guess it's a good thing it wasn't me driving by, because I'm afraid I would have had to stop, make my thoughts known, and start "taking names." Did you call Park officials?

One thought on this. I wonder why Park officials don't begin a program, similar to what most states have, with a "report a poacher" type approach and a 1-800-number. I for one would proudly display a bumper sticker on this, and I would certainly make a call if circumstances warranted.

Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

Knothead
10-29-2010, 08:36 PM
Let me mention three things here:
1. The Florida situation of tourists being robbed- rental cars had a special license plate with the letter Z. It pinpointed rental cars from other Florida cars.
2. My son took the handgun carry class here in Tennessee. You are required to carry insurance to have the permit. Also, he stated that the instructor told them that if you shoot someone, allegedly in self-defence, be prepared for a lawsuit. You might say, the criminal is dead; but his family could take everything from your family. As Shakespeare said, "Think on't."
3. I have seen officers ignore people speeding through a radar set-up. If they aren't stopped, why should people worry about getting caught breaking the law?

JoeFred
10-29-2010, 08:42 PM
Jim, I'd display such a bumper sticker also. I also doubt it was a case of ignorance, but its likely the disregard comes from a sense of entitlement. Perhaps this type of sign could be a deterent. Even non-fishing tourists could help out. :smile:
http://www.smokystreams.com/mbpics/thread14473_pic1.jpg

2weightfavorite
10-29-2010, 08:44 PM
you do not need to have any kind of insurance to carry in the state of TN. Take the class, pay your money, and carry your gun.

dizzyg
10-30-2010, 06:57 AM
Unfortunately there isn't any cell coverage in the Park (for me) and I didn't want to quite fishing to head to the house and make the call. This time of the year Little River Road is so inundated with fisherman it would only makes sense to periodically patrol the road, heck, the ranger wouldn't even have to get out of his car.

I pointed out their infraction but they seemed unconcerned. Tags indicated they were from down around the Telico Plains area which may explain some things.

As long as we are putting up signs it might be nice to put up some etiquette pointers for visiting and local fly anglers as well. I love to walk and stalk that river but it is hard when anglers hop you all day long in their cars :mad:. Get a little exercise folks, slow down, observe, you might catch a big one...

JoeFred
10-30-2010, 07:36 AM
dizzyg, good point about cell coverage. As Bill Engvall would say, "Fred, here's your sign." :redface:

You did well. Thanks.

jeffnles1
10-30-2010, 02:20 PM
I have found this thread interesting. Some of the same people who have been so dead set against naming a stream where a fish was caught for fear that someone else may fish the stream are the same ones reporting how infrequently license are checked and how little rangers care about catching poachers.

I think bait fishers and poachers have more potential to damage streams than a couple extra fly fishermen. However, naming a stream is considered taboo but telling every poacher who can read this message board that they won't get caught is considered OK.

It just seems strange to me.

Knothead
10-31-2010, 04:57 AM
I find it rather humorous that people won't name a stream for fear someone else will fish there. All I have to do is roll out my park map and pick a stream to fish. There are no secret spots in the park. Or I can go to any of the stream guides written by knowledgeable people to see if a stream is worth the effort. I used to do a fishing report for a radio station in Shreveport, LA. What I reported in the morning might have totally changed by the afternoon report. One person might catch a bunch one day and get skunked the next day on the same stretch of stream. Anyone have a day like that?

Streamhound
11-01-2010, 11:39 AM
One person might catch a bunch one day and get skunked the next day on the same stretch of stream. Anyone have a day like that?

nope I am using locations listed to pinpoint my fishing targets even if they are 2 years old:biggrin:

JoeFred
11-01-2010, 09:55 PM
There may not be not enough of us, signs, rangers, etc., to police all the places in the park where bait fishing may be going on, so how's this for a plan? Designate certain sections of streams down low and along heavily traveled roads as BAIT FISHING ONLY. Signs would also state that use or possession of any form of fish bait or liquid scent other than artificial flies or lures on or along any OTHER park stream while in possession of fishing tackle is prohibited and violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Since "bait fishing is prohibited to prevent accidental introductions of non-native aquatic organisms," this wild idea may be a nonstarter, since likely no waters would be agreed to by NPS. But for the heck of it, would anyone care to nominate some streams/sections of streams? I'm not about to. :biggrin:

JF

Crockett
11-01-2010, 11:37 PM
Stop trying to Bait us Fred...

mcfly
11-02-2010, 12:21 AM
Designate certain sections of streams down low and along heavily traveled roads as BAIT FISHING ONLY.
JF

With all respect, I don't think that is a good idea.

I believe inviting bait chuckers to fish any water in the park is a bad idea. I'm confident that those sections of water open to bait won't hold many fish before long and, with the idea that you can bait fish in the park, more sections of the stream will feel the effect. I would certainly hate to see any water in the park look like Citico or Tellico on a Saturday morning.

JoeFred
11-02-2010, 01:47 AM
I agree with you completely, mcfly.

Crockett, great comeback. You, like many a fish I have not caught, are on to me. :smile:

JF

Knothead
11-02-2010, 11:55 AM
Prohibiting baitfishing prevents introduction of invasive species and prevents fish from being hooked to deeply to survive, even if released. No bait in the park- keep it a regulation!

JoeFred
11-02-2010, 05:22 PM
I agree fully, John. We must keep on prohibiting baitfishing.

I confess to going over the top at times. It's not to create controversy, but rather to encourage our thinking out of the fly box on this matter. However bait fishing and poaching is to be countered, it will have to be done with park personnel resources that are already limited and are likely to continue to be for years to come given the country's huge indebtedness.

Here goes another wild idea: Prohibit fishing of any kind on "readily accessible waters" except... for the months of, say, April and November, during which these waters and all others (not closed for other reasons) can be fished in keeping with all existing regulations. The trick would be in defining what the "readily accessible waters" would be. One might be those within one mile of public park roads and boat landings. I chose the months I did since fishing is typically slow and such a schedule could boost sales for local businesses during those times.

Admittedly, this would put a huge crimp in our sport -- if not our lines and leaders, but it seems to me it would make it easier for park officials and the public to spot possible offenders. I may be biased, but I believe most park fly anglers wouldn't mind the required hiking nearly as much as the bait fishermen.

JF

jeffnles1
11-02-2010, 10:46 PM
Joe Fred,
I would say the seasons, creel limits, and regulations should be left up tot he Park biologists and fisheries experts. If some months are more sensitive to the fish than others and they decide the need to protect the fish populations, then so be it. I don't have the expertise to know the answer and would like to trust the folks charged with overseeing the park wildlife would make the right decisions.

As far as bait fishing, I have some mixed feelings. The invasives argument is valid, but as long as bait fishing is allowed in the streams immediately outside the park, there's nothing to stop invasives from migrating upstream to some natural barrier. That doesn't mean I would advocate fishing with bait inside the park but realize the risk of various invasives migrating upstream from outside.

Fish getting hooked too deeply is a valid argument. Unfortunately, I know a few of the fish I've caught with flies most likely died after being released due to being hooked deep. The percentage is probably lower but even with fly fishing gear, it does happen. I would have liked to keep those fish but they were typically under the 7" size limit so I had no choice but to put them back. The good thing about nature is even those fish didn't go to waste. Something ate them and they went back into the ecosystem in one way or another.

I agree bait fishing inside the park carries a higher level of risk and the Park wildlife experts have said through the regulations the level of risk is unacceptable. I tend to agree.

Just my .02 worth.

Jeff

duckypaddler
11-03-2010, 07:57 AM
I'm still confused. Is it the otters or the poachers why I can't catch any fish? I just got my carry permit and want to know who to release my anger at.:biggrin:

2weightfavorite
11-03-2010, 08:51 AM
Joefred, i think your idea is a tad bit reddiculous. What about those of us who make our living by fishing the park waters? What would a guide do if he or she had clients who couldnt walk for miles? What about the millions of other people who dont have the physical ability to walk for miles but who still dont want to fish? So what you are saying is the park should only let healthy, in shape, and young people fish... wow, great idea...

silvercreek
11-03-2010, 08:54 AM
JoeFred, my thoughts on prohibiting fishing readily accessible water. Not everyone is up to a mile hike. Some of us older folks or people with creaky legs from life's mishaps still like to fish a mountain stream. Accessible waters are also a good place to introduce kids to mountain streams. For folks who prefer to hike back a mile for the solitude, such a regulation would push more fishermen back to those places. Just my radom thoughts. Regards, Silvercreek

2weightfavorite
11-03-2010, 08:55 AM
I have my own great idea. Lets leave it as is. There are tonss of fish in the park. There are some huge fish in the park. If the fishing isn't what you desire due to lack of numbers caught or ssize caught I have a simple answer. Learn to fish better. Changing the regulations will not instantly improve the fishing, and no one says it will improve the fishing at all. I think the "poaching" goes on less than most believe. Is it technically poaching if you use bait and still only keep your 5 fish? Not really. Not if the fish are over 7 inches, you just caught your 5 in an illegal way.You wuld be hit with an inapropriate tackle fine if caught, not a poaching fine..

Grannyknot
11-03-2010, 08:58 AM
I don't think there will ever be a resolution to the problem of bait fishermen & poaching in the park. Post the laws & change the regulations all you want, but when it comes down to it, the park is never going to have enough money to provide the manpower for effective enforcement. With the park being the most visited park in the country, it starts to boil down to a priority system. So little time and personnel, with so much traffic, several large campgrounds, children's programs, other rules & regulations to be enforced, and so on and so forth....park personnel have to determine what is priority, and I doubt searching the river banks for anyone who might be using an illegal method of fishing is very high on the ole' Totem Pole. It's just one of those crappy things that we have to deal with.

There is however a few things you can do to make yourself feel better about the situation. Every time you go to the park, forget about the bait fishermen, your job, politics, finances, or anything else that bothers you during your everyday life. Look at your surroundings and think about how great your country is and how fortunate we are to have such a beautiful place to spend our free time.

silvercreek
11-03-2010, 08:58 AM
Ooops, 2weight's post was not up when I posted, or I would have just kept my mouth shut. Silvercreek

Rog 1
11-03-2010, 09:12 AM
When I first started fishing in the Park 50 years ago the enforcement of regulations by the rangers was a given....the penalties were a hefty fine, confiscation of all your tackle and you were banned from fishing for a year....I worked for 95 cents an hour those summers to buy my gear and the thought of losing it ensured I followed the rules...even back then I can remember finding illegal lures and bait hooks lost in the rhodos along the large pools of Fish Camp Prong...it is a problem that will always be with us I guess...I know the campgrounds have volunteers who help with regulations....wonder if the same could be accomplished with fishing regulations or have donations collected to be earmarked just for such enforcement personnel...

rivergal
11-03-2010, 09:14 AM
Bait = Litter

Allowing bait in the park would bring in unwanted litter like metal cans and plastic bags . Bait users have a habit of leaving their containers along the riverbank. Pretty soon it would be the Great Smoky Mountain Landfill.

dizzyg
11-03-2010, 09:40 AM
2 more on Little River yesterday. Hole hopping and yanking them out to place in a plastic bag.:mad:

gmreeves
11-03-2010, 09:53 AM
While I don't agree with poaching or breaking rules in the park, I often wonder if the poaching might actually help improve the fishing. I'm not talking about people seining the river but the people who are keeping more than their limit or keeping their limit but using illegal tactics. It seems like most reports from biologists say that the reason fish are small in the park is because there are too many fish and not enough food. Most of us are catch and release fisherman so do you think that the poaching might actually balance out the numbers? Just something I think about from time to time after releasing six inch rainbows one after the other wondering where the 10" to 12" fish are. I'm not usually fishing the road side streams so it might be a different story than the back country streams I usually fish.

NDuncan
11-03-2010, 10:38 AM
2 more on Little River yesterday. Hole hopping and yanking them out to place in a plastic bag.:mad:


Did you get license plate number or contact a ranger?

I still think starting a thread here listing descriptions, license plates of cars and people that are doing this sort of thing would be a good thing, (even pictures, if possible) so that we as a community can know who to be on the look out for, and possibly help rangers with enforcement.

dizzyg
11-03-2010, 12:14 PM
Did you get license plate number or contact a ranger?

I still think starting a thread here listing descriptions, license plates of cars and people that are doing this sort of thing would be a good thing, (even pictures, if possible) so that we as a community can know who to be on the look out for, and possibly help rangers with enforcement.

White Oldsmobile, father-son team, candidates for East TN's next Biggest Loser participants...

JoeFred
11-03-2010, 12:29 PM
Joefred, i think your idea is a tad bit reddiculous. What about those of us who make our living by fishing the park waters? What would a guide do if he or she had clients who couldnt walk for miles? What about the millions of other people who dont have the physical ability to walk for miles but who still dont want to fish? So what you are saying is the park should only let healthy, in shape, and young people fish... wow, great idea...

twf, I agree. It was a very ridiculous idea. Hey, I can relate. I'm on the back side of Medicare illegibility and, also, such a stupid plan would hurt my fledgling map business. Just trying to stir some thinking.

Putting their other incentives aside, I wonder what, if anything, about the Park fish themselves would cause bait fisherman to take a chance on getting caught? Is the goal to catch wild trout?? For the taste??

JF

jeffnles1
11-03-2010, 01:08 PM
I'm still confused. Is it the otters or the poachers why I can't catch any fish? I just got my carry permit and want to know who to release my anger at.:biggrin:

Ducky,
I can't say about you, but I can say for sure what the problem is with me. I need to fish the streams more and better.

On a very good day, I'll catch 10-15 fish. On an average day, I'll land 4 or 5 and on a not so productive day, I have a great time being in the mountains and enjoying the day.:smile:

I think I'll just start blaming the otters and be done with it.:biggrin:

Jeff

jeffnles1
11-03-2010, 01:20 PM
Putting their other incentives aside, I wonder what, if anything, about the Park fish themselves would cause bait fisherman to take a chance on getting caught? Is the goal to catch wild trout?? For the taste??

JF

JF,
I honestly don't think either of those is the answer to your question. I think the answer lies in the same reason I see Budweiser cans on the banks of streams, soiled diapers on the trails, rude drivers on the roads, and other issues. Our society is becoming increasingly narcissistic.

When the ONLY person you care about is yourself, and you stop caring about others things like this happen with ever greater frequency. A lot of people just flat don't care and think the rules should only apply to the other guy. The "I'm going to do whatever I darn well please and you're not going to stop me" is the problem.

It's not regulations because they are made to be broken. It's not bait fishermen per-se, it's the I don't give a hoot about those darn rules attitude that's the problem.

Unfortunately, more rules will not stop it. Stricter enforcement of the rules may reduce it but given the current economic status, we all know that isn't going to happen either.

Unfortunately, the same mentality that breeds the "I don't care about your stinking rules" is the same mentality that will stand there and fight with you when you point it out to them.

Not in the Smokys, but in other areas, I've been cussed at, threatened, mocked, and ignored when I've pointed out to people what they are doing is against the regulations on a particular body of water.

One acquaintance of mine called the fish and game department about some people keeping over their limit of fish. The poachers saw him on the cell phone and left. When he got done fishing and went back to his truck to go home, all 4 tires had been slashed. And, the game wardens never did show up. When the police came, they asked him if he actually saw the people doing it. His answer was "no" and the sheriff deputy said there was nothing he could do other than fill out a report that may help with his insurance comapny.

I'm not saying we should ignore it and fail to report it or say something about it. I am saying it will not be appreciated and be prepared for what may happen next.

again, just my .02 worth.

Jeff

buzzmcmanus
11-03-2010, 03:10 PM
I would like to see the park opened to bait fishermen. The past couple years, I've caught bigger and better fish than I have in the past. And I really don't think it is because I'm just that much better of a fisherman than I was then. I do believe that it is because of the drought and a percentage of fish have been removed from the system. Just think if we didn't have to wait for major environmental changes to improve our fisheries. The bait fishermen could do it for us.

It would also increase oportunities for youth fishing. Lets face it, kids get bored. I've never taken a kid fishing in the park, but I can't imagine their success being much more than 1 fish an hour. If they could hook on a cricket or worm, and catch 1 fish every 10 minutes, they have a much better chance of staying with the sport and maybe even growing up to be fly fishermen. Our youth are our future and we really need to see that more of them are brought up hunting and fishing.

As for the trash issue, it's just something we would have to deal with. I see trash all over the park. I don't let it get to me, I pick it up and throw it away. The only time it ever bothered me was when someone threw out a 6 pack of Miller Lites right behind my Jeep when I was parked along Little River Road, and they were all empties. They should have at least had the decency to leave 1 full.

JoeFred
11-03-2010, 10:04 PM
The Sinks on the Little River acts as a barrier to bass swimming upstream. Do you suppose the same would apply to non-native aquatic organisms being accidentally introduced from bait fishing downstream? Of course, there are no such barriers down low on the Middle & West Prongs, so this could well be a moot question.

JF

Knothead
11-04-2010, 08:24 AM
Buzzmcmanus, I respect your opinion but may I disagree with you? I'm sure that the present regulations were put in place for a specific reason, some of which I mentioned previously. I have two grandsons, ages 4 and 7. I took them to a pond loaded with bluegill for non-stop action. My son takes his little boy to a similar pond (got hold of a big catfish there). I wouldn't recommend taking a beginner fishing in the park or any trout stream where they might fish all day and maybe not catch anything. I live close to some small streams in SE Tennessee where I am considering taking the boys next spring. I have a 2 wt. they can use. In addition, I'm going to have them look for deer tracks, birds, squirrel, etc. to let them see what nature offers in the way of entertainment.
First, I'm going to fish the streams to see what activity is available. Someone has to do it!;)

Grannyknot
11-04-2010, 08:58 AM
They should just allow gill nets.
If 1 fish survived, think of the food base that would be left available for it.
Plus, it would be easier for someone to catch Lynn's "old sam".

Wondering if anyone remember's the episode where Howard catches old sam....

rivergal
11-04-2010, 09:29 AM
While fishing at Tremont a couple of years ago I saw some orange goldfish
someone had dumped into the river. Releasing unwanted pets in the park
is not a good idea.

buzzmcmanus
11-04-2010, 10:31 AM
While fishing at Tremont a couple of years ago I saw some orange goldfish
someone had dumped into the river. Releasing unwanted pets in the park
is not a good idea.

This could potentially be far more destructive than any bait fishing regulation.

may I disagree with you?
Nope, noone is allowed to disagree with me........................Just kidding. Civil disagreement makes for good discussions.

"I wouldn't recommend taking a beginner fishing in the park or any trout stream where they might fish all day and maybe not catch anything". - Under the current regulations, I agree. But, if you could float a worm, or cricket (I'm assuming crickets catch trout) through the same runs, I guarantee you, it would be more exciting for them than it is now.

"I'm sure that the present regulations were put in place for a specific reason". - I'm pretty sure, these regulations were put into place 30+ years ago. People kept more fish then. Maybe it's time the Park Service re-considered some of their regulations. Fewer and fewer people are getting out of their cars, the park service needs to focus less on creating better roadways and put a little more emphasis on showing what else the park offers. If nothing else, maybe open a few streams to bait fishing and study the effects a few years down the road. It wouldn't have to be an all or nothing sort of deal.

The majority of bait fishermen would be congregated in certain areas, picnic areas, the sinks, the Y, etc. These are areas that most fishermen avoid anyways. There would be a few "hardcore" fishermen that would travel into the backcountry, but they would be the exception instead of the rule.

* Disclaimer - I do raise mealworms, however they are not sold, I use them to feed the wrens in the winter. I would hate if someone found out about this and thought I was wanting to open the park to bait fishing for my own financial reasons.

Rog 1
11-04-2010, 11:01 AM
I have been fishing under these "regs" as they exist today for 50 years...prior to that I do not know how long they were in existence...used to be able to bait fish in Gburg when I was a teenager and caught those trout on dough balls....don't want to see bait allowed in the park...ever...God only knows what alien bait people would dump into the rivers...there never has been a problem with people catching fish in the park...if you want bigger fish take some out to eat....when I first started fishing just about everyone that fished in the park kept what they caught to eat....the fish were bigger then and just as plentiful...except for the occasional 12"+ trout I am lucky enough to catch which I return to the gene pool...I eat what I catch on the few occasions that I get to fish....one summer the park tried to fish out treemont and required all trout but brookies be taken out no matter the size...the next year was the best fishing on that water that I can remember....fish were plentiful and on average were 1-2 inches larger than the year before....the bait fishermen who did walk back to Fish Camp Prong targeted the big bows that used to live in the large plunge pools and caught them all...while I never was able to fool one of those big fish it was always fun to spot them and to think that one day...but not to happen....so NO BAIT

Jim Casada
11-04-2010, 11:57 AM
Rog 1--My experience under the "no bait" regs reaches back an even greater distance (62 of my 68 years) than yours, and like you I think allowing bait would be a travesty. I won't go into all the reasons why, but I will say that a skilled bait fisherman can flat out wipe out a stream's population, and if that door was opened I greatly fear that the mentality of some bait fishermen would be--"I've gotten an inch so I'll take a mile and keep everything I catch." That happens a bit now, but it is mostly in distant headwaters where the flour sacks full of trout are taken.
I'm adamantly against allowing bait. Folks who want to use it have plenty of opportunities in state waters in N. C. and Tennessee.
Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

Rog 1
11-04-2010, 02:25 PM
Jim...you only have 5 years on me...I didn't start trout fishing until I was 13...first trout was a 7" rainbow from Porter's Creek on a Ginger Quill...while the mentality to take all you can is not cornered by only bait fishermen, I think that to open up the Park's streams to this practice would be too much temptation for those that do...my grandfather used to tell me stories of the locals using "stick bait" to enhance their wet flies to increase their odds....he also told me of a ranger..Cantrell..that could tell when this was being done and would watch the perpetrators through field glasses until he could write them up...

JoeFred
11-04-2010, 04:55 PM
... kids get bored. I've never taken a kid fishing in the park, but I can't imagine their success being much more than 1 fish an hour.
...
Our youth are our future and we really need to see that more of them are brought up hunting and fishing.
...

buzz, I'm with you on getting the youth interested. My 3-year old, granddaughter caught her first fish all by herself recently. Her dad was there for support. There is a short window of opportunity in mobile digital era. Many youngsters will only get to experience fishing using an "app."

The very lightly fished Hesse Creek drainage empties into the Little River outside the park downstream of Townsend. Only small stretches of this remote watershed streams holds wild trout.

For the sake of discussion letís say the National Park Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency were to enter into an agreement whereby TWRA would stock the Hesse Creek drainage up into the park.

What regulations could be put in place whereby younger, typically impatient anglers could experience catching a trout in the Smoky Mountains? (I personally think bait fishing should be prohibited there as elsewhere).

What access improvements could be made with minimal effect on the environment? (Park-sanctioned Jeep shuttles for example)

What access restrictions should be considered? (Special permit issued by shuttle operator perhaps?)

(I'm a little uneasy with this post since I've yet to get to fish the area, but I know Crockett once landed a 3 inch black dace there once. :biggrin:)

JF

New Thread (http://littleriveroutfitters.com/forum/showthread.php?t=14612) started 11/5 under "Fisheries Management & Biology."

NDuncan
11-04-2010, 05:03 PM
The very lightly fished Hesse Creek drainage empties into the Little River outside the park downstream of Townsend. Only small stretches of this remote watershed streams holds wild trout.

For the sake of discussion let’s say the National Park Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency were to enter into an agreement whereby TWRA would stock the Hesse Creek drainage up into the park.


Isn't it at least partially stocked by blackberry farms? Maybe some of those will escape upstream and do some populating.

Jim Casada
11-04-2010, 06:12 PM
Rog 1--Great anecdote about Bud Cantrell. I know him personally and one of his sons is a writer while another has done a little book on The Fishes of Cherokee Country. He was famed for his efforts in dealing with poachers and lawbreakers and didn't mind getting into the backcountry to do so. I ran into him, one of his sons, and some grandchildren on Noland Creek a couple of years back. He's a great guy and was the successor the Bill Rolen, the ranger with whose son I spent so many wonderful days as a boy.

As for stick bait or rock bait tipping hooks, another old-time fly/bait trick was to tip a fly with a trout eye. Good to know there are some folks around who have loved the Park for so many years as I have (Hugh Hartsell is in their ranks).

Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

JoeFred
11-04-2010, 07:56 PM
Isn't it at least partially stocked by blackberry farms? Maybe some of those will escape upstream and do some populating.

Looks doable... except for the poor guys that ended up pecan-crusted with pickled fresh water prawns and grits for company. :smile:

JF

MBWCC
11-05-2010, 07:03 AM
...federal law now allows properly licensed individuals to carry a weapon in national parks. Those holding such licenses have gone through intensive training, and that training includes detailed coverage of thretening situtions.
Not to argue the validity of one side of the debate or the other, but for those discussing the issue I felt the facts should be known. Here is the link outlining the requirements for a PA concealed weapon/carry permit issued in my county/state:

http://dsf.chesco.org/sheriff/cwp/view.asp?a=3&q=609185 (http://dsf.chesco.org/sheriff/cwp/view.asp?a=3&q=609185)

In this county/state there is no extensive training required for a concealed weapon/carry permit; there is no training requirement at all. PA will issue a concealed weapon/carry permit to anyone capable of properly completing the full application, having 2 friends willing to provide a positive character reference, possessing a PA drivers license or identification card, and having the financial means to pay a $25 application fee.

What Jim has stated regarding extensive training being required for a concealed weapon/carry permit may be true for TN but it is definitely not true for many states.

Furthermore, Tennessee has signed a reciprocity agreement with many other states which allow permit holders in the reciprocal states to carry concealed weapons in TN. The list of reciprocal states may be found here:

http://www.tennessee.gov/safety/handgun/reciprocity.htm (http://www.tennessee.gov/safety/handgun/reciprocity.htm)

If you review the list you will see that PA has signed the concealed weapon carry reciprocity agreement with TN. Due to this agreement a PA concealed weapon/carry permit is valid for concealed weapon carry in TN. This means that a PA concealed weapon/carry permit holder who has received absolutely zero training (the norm), much less any intensive training, or any training regarding threatening situations is now "properly licensed" with respect to concealed weapon carry in GSMNP.

I am not in any way stating an opinion as to whether lack of training is a good thing, a bad thing, or a horrible thing. I am merely stating that Jim's statement regarding everyone having undergone extensive training in order to carry a concealed weapon in GSMNP is not entirely accurate.

No offense to Jim as I very much believe he was not aware of these facts and that Jim relied on TN's rules as the basis for his statement.

Rog 1
11-05-2010, 09:21 AM
Rog 1--Great anecdote about Bud Cantrell. I know him personally and one of his sons is a writer while another has done a little book on The Fishes of Cherokee Country. He was famed for his efforts in dealing with poachers and lawbreakers and didn't mind getting into the backcountry to do so. I ran into him, one of his sons, and some grandchildren on Noland Creek a couple of years back. He's a great guy and was the successor the Bill Rolen, the ranger with whose son I spent so many wonderful days as a boy.

As for stick bait or rock bait tipping hooks, another old-time fly/bait trick was to tip a fly with a trout eye. Good to know there are some folks around who have loved the Park for so many years as I have (Hugh Hartsell is in their ranks).

Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com (http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com)

Jim...another brief story about Mr. Cantrell...my uncle and grandfather recounted a story about one pair of poachers pinched by Bud coming out of Fish Camp Prong with 112 trout...of those only 10 were over the limit...wonder how many of the newer generation of fishermen in the Park know what "stick bait" is..as always I enjoy your comments to my posts

elkhaircaddis
11-07-2010, 03:16 PM
they may allow treble hook rooster tails one day, but never bait. Everyone would leave their green giant corn can on the ground. and the blue nightcrawler cup, just take a look at the river through townsend. I actually spoke with steve and matt (head park fish honchos) several times on the treble hook subject, and they said the populations would not be affected at all, fishermen kill roughly 15% of the fish up there every year, mother nature kills 70-80% each year. Only thing is there is not an interest group of treble hook rooster tail fishermen that pump money into the park, yet there is TU. Therefore, regs will stay the same for a long time most likely