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FRW 04-24-2006 11:10 PM

Is it just me
First the good news. Went fishing at the bridge at the confluence of the west and middle prong today. I got into town late and just wanted to get into the water. It turned out to be a pretty good idea. On my third cast of a bead head nymph I hooked up with a 13 inch 'Bow". Biggest I have ever caught in the Park and my first ever on a nymph. Nothing else for the rest of the afternoon, but I consider that a pretty good day.

Now the bad news. Possibly the reason the fishing went downhill is because of the 4 young men who decided to jump off the bridge. I know there is a big sign saying that is not allowed, but I guess these yahoos can't read. They each jumped 4 times for a total of 16 cannonballs within 25 feet of where I was fishing. Nothing like a little bridge jumping to ruin someones fishing. This is the 3rd time in 3 straight trips where I have had something like this happen to me. Last year it was two people and their dog splashing behind me just down stream from Tremont, and 2 years ago it was a mother throwing her kids in behind me in the LR. You would think 500K+ acres would be big enough to get a little solitude when you are in the river. Maybe I am just old fashioned enough to think that people should show some consideration for others, but maybe that is asking for too much now a days.

Thanks for letting me. Tomorrow I will be moving higher up, maybe that will give me more peace. :-/

tennswede 04-25-2006 08:17 AM

Re: Is it just me
This is getting to be more of a problem everywhere. Hiking away from the crowds helps sometimes but I have spent considerable time hiking and still run into people. I guess we just have to learn to live with it in the future. Old fashioned consideration is a matter of education. I have found that the tailwaters are full nowadays with people that want to fish right on top of you. Sad but true. I try not to let these things bother me because if I do they win and my day is ruined.

kytroutman 04-25-2006 08:33 AM

Re: Is it just me
Have you came across anyone bathing in the stream yet? I have had that happen as well regardless of the signage and regulations.

FRW 04-25-2006 11:53 AM

Re: Is it just me
Thankfully no bathers as of yet. It isn't just a problem here. My wife and I go to Mich. every fall to fish the AuSable and Manistee. Up there it is the canoers. Some are very nice people who raise their paddles and drift silently by with a hello and how's the fishing. Others seem to go out of their way to be loud and intrusive. Talking to some of the regulars up there it seems it is becoming a bigger problem every year. They have the added problem of trash( beer and soda cans/bottles, plastic sandwich bags, chip bags etc.) being thrown out of the canoes by some of the jerks. From my experience in Mich. I would say it isn't totally generational, but it does seem like the younger you are the more likely the less consideration you have for others. And sadly gender doesn't seem to be that much of a factor. I have seen young women who were every bit as inconsiderate as young men. I know I am dating myself here, but women used to be the more civilized of the two sexes, but I am not so sure about that anymore.

kytroutman 04-25-2006 01:31 PM

Re: Is it just me
Not to be sexist but my only occurrences of bad behavior in the Smokies have been encounters with the females. One was a pair of college age students who had lawn chairs sitting in the middle of the stream to sun who unleashed a verbal barrage of four lettered words when I had the audacity to question it. The second was a lady that threw a Mc*******s bag down next to LR that her kids had just finished off. When I remarked that it was littering, her response was "that's why we have park employees". You are right about dating your age. If I had pulled either response when I was younger, my dad would have made sure I had a cauliflower ear to show for. It is unfortunate that the lack of respect crosses not only genders but also generations.

RFowler 04-25-2006 01:38 PM

Re: Is it just me
I feel for ya there, FRW. God tests our patience with different stuff. Boy do I know this in other ways. Personally, I have had only one problem in the park after about 500+ trips. Two flyfishers decided the pool I was fishing on Abrams was big enough for all three of us ::). It did get under my skin a little but I just moved on and kind of chuckled. These buffoons were getting strikes from warpaints but they thought they were trout ;D. If you can get out during the week you will encounter less crowds. That is when I fish the park most, that and in the off season. But, spring is spring, you are bound to have more competition for the resource you are using.

pmike 04-26-2006 09:35 PM

Re: Is it just me (Hey Rusty)
I wish ya woulda told me they were shiners! Guess that's why they were so bony and tasted so bad :).

Just messing with ya...

My biggest problem was at the Y at the Townsend park entrance and the boys who were letting their dogs, a pit bull and boxer run loose. It was fine till the dogs started growling as they began stalking me as though I were intruding on their territory. Yet another great reason for carrying a large industrial strength can of pepper spray.


Gek 04-26-2006 10:23 PM

Re: Is it just me
I think RFowler said it best, it's just "God testing your patience." I'm in no way defending the actions of people that most of us would consider to be rude, but how do you respond to those people? How can you teach them? What can they learn that they can also pass down to others, and ultimately, generationally to their kids, etc? Remember, many of the people visiting the park have never had the opportunity to be in such a great and peaceful place. They don't know how to act. Many bring the city with them. It's our job to help them bring a little country back to their home. That's what it's all about for me. Though it's tough, that's what it should be about for all of us. Trust me, I can get a good bit of road rage driving the cove to Abrams Creek and 100 "touron" cars stop for a groundhog. In retrospect, I realize that I was the one acting like a moron. Please understand, I'm just trying to encourage all of us to take a step back and look at the big picture...and I'm talking mainly to myself. I, for one, would take the bad times anyday over no times at all. Can I get an amen brother?

Also, I'm glad there are postings on here about these situations. Even the thread about stream etiquette between fishermen. It's a great resource for people who have never visited to understand how they should treat others when they come to the GSMNP. Let's keep it coming.

rainshaker 04-26-2006 10:53 PM

Re: Is it just me
I'm not saying this would help the local economy at all, but I've often thought (usually while searching for a place far enough up stream in which to fish) that the state Legislature should call for an expensive but mandatory 3-week safety course for a license to "tube" inside the park; tubing and lawn chair sitting in the middle of a stream. What is that phenomenon, anyway?

"I've got a lawn chair and a cooler and I know just the stream I'm going to occupy for the weekend"

I say these horrible things "tongue n' cheek," of course, and understand that the park should be enjoyed by all walks of humanity, *but in my own selfish manner, I pretend to justify the tubing license this way: We now pay $46 annually for the priviledge to engage in a harmless outdoor activity called catch and release fishing....So, one license for a harmless outdoor activity deserves another, then again, how much of the park's resources are spent rescuing Fly fishers from the park each year?

Knoxville News Sentinel
July 10, 2005

Bob Miller, spokesman for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, said the park rescues a fair number of tubers a year, and that foot injuries are the most common type.

"Tubing has the potential to take someone from knee-deep water to 20 feet of water in only a few feet," Miller said. "Like any form of water recreation, it comes with its own hazards."

moflyer3 04-27-2006 09:29 AM

Re: Is it just me
Excellent post GeK. The thought of someone getting angry over a child, or a grown-up for that matter, asking how the fishing is going in a National Park is nuts.

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