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  #11  
Old 04-14-2006, 09:01 AM
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rainshaker rainshaker is offline
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

Call it "profiling" but if I was a Wildlife official I believe I would target those with spin reels and a bucket o worms before anyone with a fly-rod in their hand. I'm no elitist but you've got to start somewhere.....Last fall I went fishing on the Davidson River, which is in the Pisgah National Forest, it took a Ranger about 15 minutes to find me and ask to see my NC fishing license, which I glady displayed. This guy actually wanted to know if I had seen anyone else fishing nearby

Also, although it was just outside of the GSMNP boundary, I once saw a guy "chumming" with a bucket of corn.

Furthermore, I'd be willing to donate to get some HUGE signs posted with GSMNP regulations posted

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  #12  
Old 04-14-2006, 09:48 AM
Jack M. Jack M. is offline
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

Just a thought: many people go to the park to enjoy the natural surroundings and they may not appreciate fishing regulation billboards on every third tree. *I am pretty sure that anyone who wants to know the regulations can learn them. *While I agree that many are ignorant of the regs, they are so willfully. *

Also: it is rather unbecoming to refer to tourists as "tourons." *It is a NATIONAL Park afterall, and the economies of the various towns surrounding the Park are supported heavily by "touron" dollars. *Beside that, I would bet 90 percent of the poaching is from locals. *Or should I say locidiots?
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  #13  
Old 04-14-2006, 11:43 AM
Kytroutbum Kytroutbum is offline
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

MY reference was NOT A BILLBOARD ON EVERY THIRD TREE and should NOT HAVE BEEN taken that way. The small signs now used are VERY OLD and extremely inconspicious-I can remember these same signs from when I first came to the Smokies as a student in 1968. Replacing them with a 5X7 or 8X10 with a more attention getting pattern or coloration, a "Special Regulations Apply" type heading, etc. at the major pull offs and trail heads, would be more benefical. Above Elkmont, we have had dog walkers and bike riders constantly, cars are parked in front of the poles with the small signs. I was glad to see the NPS posted a larger more visible sign up the trail. Many of these people honestly are NOT aware, even though they should be. I've had sales personnel in the stores tell me erroneous information when I've bought a Tenn, license in the past. Many people come to the park not aware of the fishing (Believe it or not with all the publications), buy a license at a store from a clerk who may never have fished a day in their life. Check out the situation in pmike's earlier post, I think is is the rule, more than the exception.

I am not an East Tennessean, although I wish I was. I have encountered locals keeping fish only two times. Both times they were fishing a green artifical worm, and in conversation with them, I could tell they were only keeping a couple legal fish. I watch two older gentlemen (in late 70's and 80's) releasing fish after killing a couple each. I have found the people of East Tennessee GENERALLY HAVE A GREATER RESPECT FOR THE PARK than many folks around parks in other parts of the country . If I were a meat fishermen, I think I would spend more time outside the park where the fish are generally larger or Cherokee. I would venture that 90% of illegal fishing is from Tourists who are NOT AWARE and 10% from deliberately illegal.

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  #14  
Old 04-14-2006, 01:15 PM
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

Thats not a bad idea...maybe just a blaze orange highlight on a few of these signs you speak of would make a difference...youd have to think if nothing else, rangers wouldn't feel as bad about writing someone a citation or siezing their gear




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  #15  
Old 04-14-2006, 03:24 PM
Kytroutbum Kytroutbum is offline
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

I guess I was a VICTIM OF PROFILING mentioned in my previous post. "Panther Martin Pam" my better 1/2 was original stopped on the hill before the Ranger came down. She is a HOOT to look at when she is fishing. Spin Cast reel, old hiking shoes for wading shoes. She must have sent red flags all over the park.(:>) Actually, She can toss a fly fairly accurately, I've tried to buy her new wading shoes, vest and other gear. I've tried to enroll her in a fly fishing school. Fly fishing isn't her thing. LOOKS CAN BE VERY DECIEVING. Last summer, near Yellowstone with 4 of us fishing she took the 2 largest fish (20+ inch bow's in the back country, released them with TLC, didn't even take them out of the water.) I have have to make her spinners- all single hook barbless- anywhere she fishes. Every fish caught is handled TLC , released with hemostat , stays in the water-even the small stunted crappies on Lake Carnico were we live. * *

Kytroutman- a bottle of bleach works better than worms to get ALL YOUR FISH on Rock Creek. Good advice there is don't even think about being confrontational with those boys.
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  #16  
Old 04-14-2006, 09:04 PM
yellowsulphur29 yellowsulphur29 is offline
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

I hope I did not start an argument or open a can or worms (no pun intended) about the problems in the park. I myself hated to cite boaters on Fort Loudon and these were locals. Most TWRA officers and game wardens do not look for problems, but believe you me there are profiles performed. I would chase the teenagers in a ski boat well before the grandma and grandpa in the pontoon. Typically it also led to more boating under the influence. I would have to admit though. It is more common that fly fisherman would be legal in the park, it seems we are more apt to conservation than some of the spin fisherman. I don't mind people fishing with equipment other than fly rods, heck I enjoy seeing young children learning how to catch wild trout, and most children do not have the patience for fly fishing. As long as the hook is single and there is no live or processed baits at the end of the line I don't care if people use a cane pole. Rooster tails come in single hook and so do other famous trout lures for spin fisherman.

I would be all for placing larger signs in the park areas. These could be posted at the major campgrounds like Tremont and Elkmont Metcalfe, and at Sugarlands Visitors center. How hard would it be to post a sign near major pulloffs like Meigs Falls or the Sinks? These areas receive a lot of tourist traffic and the signs could be made so as to not distract from the beauty of the park surroundings. I have donated hundreds of dollars to Friends of the Smokies, TU and other wildlife organizations, so if money or time is the problem to build these signs or post them I would be willing to offer a hand if for nothing else than to educate someone. The number one excuse I got as a TWRA officer was "I didn't know that was illegal", this would at least cut out that excuse. I hate to think our national park would have to go to a pay per day use like Gatlinburg, Tellico, or Citico, but maybe it would provide more funding for wildlife and fisheries.
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  #17  
Old 04-17-2006, 10:54 AM
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Default Re: Illegal fishing in park

I have been checked almost everytime I come up and I always say thanks to the ranger.... now I must add that we generally start at Metcalf Bottoms where there is generally a higher patrol frequency.

I wholeheartedly endorse the bigger sign routine as well. If there is a sign at the entrance to the park at Townsend... it sure hasn't caught my attention. I would certainly recommend a simple "Special Fishing Regulations In Force" sign with details below just to catch folks attention.

Confronting some of these folks can get really dangerous. We've had some problems on the Elk River tailwaters in the past with "good ol' boys" getting very hostile while walking out with strings of 20 and 30 trout.

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