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Thread: Fly fishing guides, good/bad?

  1. #21
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    Most of this is on public land and the trail maps and streams are already published. If anyone thinks they're the first human to set foot on one of these streams they're wrong.

    I don't see what another book is going to do any different than the trail and fishing map you get from the park service at the visitor center. There are hundreds of maps around that show the streams and access points. All people are doing is repackaging what's already out there in a slightly different format.

    That's my .02 worth.

    Jeff

  2. #22
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    I don't believe that anyone thinks that they are the first person to ever set foot there. I know that there have been many hearty souls that have tried it long before i was ever a thought.

    And like you said, there are plenty of maps out there that show the streams and trails. However, you can't tell anything about the fishing from those maps nor can you really tell anything about the stream (how big it is, casting conditions, etc.). That is where these books come in handy, as they at least tell you the author's experience on the stream. That is the big advantage to some of these books.

    There is nothing wrong with these books, the author's aren't breaking any sort of ethical code or anything i guess that deep down we all (or i do at least) like to think that we have found this one great place that not many people have yet ventured; that we somehow, put forth the effort and somehow managed to find this one great stream that you will be telling stories about for years and years. Now we all know this isn't true, but it sure is nice to think it!

    But like it has been said many times over in this thread, you still have to get out and walk to these places and how many people are willing to do that? You and i probably are, but most won't.

    Craig

  3. #23
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    Craig,
    I was not referring to you or anyone else on this board. I've seen the discussion before on other boards and among local fishermen with whom I've talked. Some guys seem to think they're the first human to ever set foot on a stream and that it's some sort of secret.

    I was talking to a guy this summer who was telling me about a great stream he found. He was so secretive about it that telling me the location was like giving up the password to his ATM card. Come to find out, as he started telling me where the stream was, it was a tailwater below a local dam. About a hundred people can be found on that stretch of water on any given weekend day.

    With the possible exception of remote wilderness areas, I doubt if there are any "new" streams left to discover.

    Like most here have said, if you get more than 500 yards away from the road, one still has the Mountains to himself. It is always amazing to me to figh the traffic in the Smokeys and think it looks more like New York City at rush hour than a park. Then, I get out of the car, walk 200 or so yards back a trail or a couple hundred yards up a creek and there's not another human being in site (other than my son who is usually with me).

    Jeff

  4. #24
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    Default mytoocents

    This is one of the livelier topics I have seen on here in a while. I really like how civil a controversial topic can be addressed - something that is uncommon on the other boards that I follow.

    Let me say that I tend to come down on the side of Pete and Buzz and a couple others. Wanting to increase participation in our sport seems counterintuitive considering the ever increasing pressure on our scare resources. Nevertheless, the health of our sport supersedes the interests of each of us as individuals.

    I see this in my other pastime as well - bowhunting. Getting permission on a suitable property in East TN to bowhunt is like getting Rosie O'Donnell away from the buffet - dang near impossible. And the numbers of hunters are shrinking because of lack of access and when you find a property to hunt - public or private - the last thing on your mind is finding someone to share it with.

    In the end, 10% of the fisherman will continue to catch 90% of the fish (and 10% of the bowhunters will kill 90% of the deer) no matter how many locations, techniques and "secrets" are publicized. It still takes work and a tad of intelligence. I take some solace in that. I seem to catch enough fish and kill enough deer to keep me happy. And every now and then I take someone flyfishing or bowhunting that has never been. I think it's a good thing.

    Of course my opinion is completely unencumbered by facts. ;-)
    Last edited by adirondack46r; 02-15-2008 at 04:46 PM.

  5. #25
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    Thanks guys for all the input on the subject. I am still not sure that its a good thing having these books. My grandpa and dad have fished these streams for over 70 yrs. They have a very special place in my heart. From what I understand this book by Hall is the first true guide to WNC. There was a book I read by a man named Jacobs about all of the streams in the southeast. but he had no clue what he was talking about. The guy was talking about streams being to bushy for a good cast that most of us locals could cast with our eyes shut. I guess the one river in Halls book that irked me the most was one that I caught my first brookie on some twenty yrs ago. Its in the Pisgah national forest and very easy access from the parkway. Most of the regulars on here probably know what I am talking about. The place is crawling with hikers and tourists. I have fished this river hundreds of times and done good almost every time. Maybe in twenty yrs I have seen 15 fisherman up there. I have a bad feeling that this spring I park the truck and walk down to the stream to and see two, three or more guys working this stretch. Maybe I am just jumping the gun, but it does worry me. One thing that was said before is right, that it still takes the skills to catch the fish. I guess I can fall back on that one. Well I would love to get more input on this subject.

  6. #26
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    Jeff, didn't mean to sound like i took that in a negative way because i most certainly didn't. I think there are pros and cons to both sides, just like there are in all controversial topics. I'll be honest though, i am probably guilty of trying to keep some streams as secret as possible, but if someone asks who i know is a responsible fisherman then i have no problem telling them.

    Another issue that i have with these books telling about these streams is that, theoretically, the more people that fish a stream the more chance there is for trash to start showing up. Now i know this is all just theory with a little dash of a biased opinion thrown in for good measure, but it makes sense to me. I know that on some larger streams where people visit more frequently, you can often see some form of trash on the stream banks pretty often, whether it be line on the ground, drink cans, etc. I know that the park service tries to keep a handle on this and i believe that they have people that clean up in those areas (i could be wrong), but if trash begins to show up in some of these more remote areas then what are the odds of it gradually increasing since it would be harder to get someone to do trail maintenance? I don't know, this just popped into my head, maybe it wouldn't be that big of a deal.

    WNCFLY, by the way, i know the stream you are talking about and i have only seen one other fisherman there since i've been going there. That is a beautiful, and treacherous, stretch of water and with the nature of the river during that certain part i think only a few, the fanatical and therefore slightly dumb fisherman like yourself and i, would attempt it. Even if you wanted to do it, that section of the river honestly REQUIRES you to be in somewhat good physical condition to maneuver even remotely safely. I wouldn't worry too much about it.......

    Craig

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by WNCFLY View Post
    There was a book I read by a man named Jacobs about all of the streams in the southeast. but he had no clue what he was talking about. The guy was talking about streams being to bushy for a good cast that most of us locals could cast with our eyes shut.
    I have that book, and I noticed the same thing - I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed that. He rated Cosby as "poor" because he only considered the stretch downstream from the campground as "fishable". I guess our definitions of a "cast" are different - if I can get my fly in the water, it's a cast, even if I'm only casting leader.

  8. #28
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    I remember going to WTL in my teen's and enjoying the solitude of the streams and the native brookies. At that time, it was a random encounter to meet another fisherman. After numerous publications about the area, the number of those vying for the streams has increased. Although I don't mind hiking the extra inclines to fish the upper streams, it is not as easy in my mid-40's as it was in my teens. It gets down to the streamstide privacy and the inconsiderate nature of some who will "crash" on the section of stream you are fishing instead of hiking a little distance for separation and to make the experience successful for both.

  9. #29
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    Craig,
    It's cool. I just didn't want you to think I was picking on you or any of the guys here. This is by far the most civil message board I've ever participated in. Heated discussions are handled with civility and tact and that's a rare thing on the internet these days.

    As for the topic in this thread, there's plenty of room on both sides of the discussion for everyone to be right to a degree.

    There's no excuse for leaving trash behind at a lake or stream. I just cannot understand what goes on in someone's mind who would just toss something on the ground and walk away. I've always had a policy to take at least one more thing out of the woods than what I brought in and I've been teaching my son that same lesson.

    The same goes on encroaching on a stretch of water that another fisherman is working. Simply inexcusable. Sometimes accidents happen and you don't see the other guy until it's too late. In those times, a simple apology and back out as quietly as possible to leave him or her to the water is the only option. There's just no excuse for rude behaviour.

    Jeff

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