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Discussion Starter #1
Got to the river at 07:00 Saturday morning middle of Coho prime time. Slowly pulled into the parking area, parked and got out in the rain.
We were pleasantly surprised to see only 2 other cars parked; a VW wagon and a white mid 1990's 4Runner Toyota on the other side. The two people from the Toyota were outside getting geared up. I called out "Hows it going, a little wet today huh?" Or something similar. Reply I got was something like "F*cking rain never stops." or something like that.
My 10 year old son was standing beside me, looking at me. Let's get our gear I said to the boy. I am not a prude, I have worked alongside regular guys my whole life, blue collar jobs mostly. I cuss. But come on, my kid was standing right there. But it was dark, maybe he didn't see that I had a kid with me.
My 72 year old dad was getting the rods out of the back of my truck, we joined him, and since we already had our waders on (Mom and Dad live not far away), we headed straight down to the river.
There are two areas to fish. Most guys head downstream as there are usually more fish, and a larger area to work. We headed upstream. We walked up the trail in the first light, dad and I talking about how we used to fish this area with my Grandpa when I was my son's age, my son excitedly chattering about the fishing, how nice the water looked and how it was our first time out this year. I must have heard something because when I looked back, I saw the guy from the 4Runner racing up behind us, practically running. It is a single track path and the guy was trying to get past us; he had left his fishing partner long behind.
We chose the upstream area because my son is still small. He is a keen fisherman, but he cannot wade out or cast as far as a grown man. The other reason is because in this one particular place the water is pretty much free of snags and he would be able to have a real honest chance at hooking his own fish without hanging up too much. We got to the spot ahead of the guy and figured he'd continue upstream past us.
Nope.
As I stood on the edge of the calm quiet backwater helping my son, and with my Dad gently wading out into the river, this guy rushes out splashing his way into the run directly in front of us. Almost beyond comprehension to me because he's carrying two rods! He couldn't cast either of them without putting one of them down somewhere - into the water.
Now, I don't fish as much as I'd like to, but some of the best days of my life have been spent with my Dad on the local rivers. I was born in the lower mainland, and grew up here. Same with my Dad and my son. My Dad has been fishing these rivers for more than 50 years. This is one of the last few places that we can go and get away from the crowds and those who have no etiquette. Not any more it would seem.
So he splashes into the one spot on the river where my kid can get some good casts away (with the intention of cutting us out), and I yell "Hey what are you doing?!" He replies with something like "It's a big F*cking river, there's lots of room". "Thanks a lot"! I reply sarcastically. He then turns, probably realizing he's got two rods in his hands and heads for shore walking toward my Dad, then heads upstream on the other side of some some snags. As I he walks by I say "And please don't use profanity in front of my kid." He replies "Maybe you should teach him to share."
My kid was rattled, as was I. My Dad advises me to "leave it" (also obviously rattled). And just like that, our day was ruined. What was supposed to be a nice morning fishing coho with 3 generations of guys (in an area that my Dad and I have fished together for more than 30 years) was ruined. Maybe I am too sensitive but I just don't see what's the point of continuing to fish local rivers when you have these types of encounters.
Now I don't blame a guy for getting stressed about someone getting to the run first and getting the first crack at the fish. I have been there myself. I bet the guy is probably a pretty good guy otherwise. He had a decent cast with the fly rod and seemed like he was outfitted well, and he was right - there was lots of river to fish and there were only 3 cars at the road. Looking at him, he could have been one of my buddies from about 10 years ago. He's probably got no kids yet and doesn't know what it's like or how important it is to have these experiences with Dad/Grandpa/Son/Grandson. Passing the torch, having a good day, just the guys, all on even ground, joking around. It is important, and it just makes me feel really sad that this guy in a fit of anxiousness took this day from us. With the busy lives we all lead, I wonder how many more of these days my father, son and I will have together.
Several minutes lather the young woman he had with him walked past. She looked embarrassed as she walked by while I was helping my son with his rod. I was trying to explain to him the fact that usually other fishermen are respectful and not rude. I was talking to my boy but I wasn't hiding it from her.
We fished there until dad got a Chinook and the younger couple had left. As she walked back downstream she was very nice, and chatted briefly. The guy just walked back staring downstream, avoiding eye contact. Couldn't even say sorry. As we were leaving we saw them way down river and he had caught and killed a Coho. I wonder if it was all worth it after all.
As I tucked my kid in bed tonight, he had tears in his eyes and I asked him what was wrong. He was tired, it has been a long day but here's what he said; "I am not sure if I really like Coho fishing after all Dad."
You know, I don't want to hurt the guy from the river, I don't wish him any harm at all. I just hope he reads this and comes away with a tiny bit of an idea of what effect his actions had on 3 nice guys out for a day on the river, but more importantly, the effect they had on a boy named Fisher.
I probably won't bring my kid back there for fear of running into this guy. I probably won't go back myself. I can't speak for my dad, but he lives in the area so who knows.
I guess the rude people win, and they still suck.
End of rant.

Sinktip
 

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Well that is BS as far as I am concerned. Too much of this crap going on with very little respect shown to fellow fisherman. If you are beaten to a fishing spot by another person, too bad you wait your turn and next time wake up earlier! If I was fishing with a yahoo like that and witnessed what you described, it would be the last time I would fish with that person. You can tell a lot about people by how they treat others, and believe me in the time I do get to fish I don't need to see that type of nonsense. As for this guy's girlfriend, hopefully she wakes up and smells the coffee before getting hitched up to the loser. Enuff said.
 

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Wow, that really does suck. I feel sorry for your son to have his outing with Dad and Grandpa ruined.That type of behavior has become all too common and the main reason I don't fish the Vedder anymore. I've even given up steelhead the past two years and didn't even buy a tag this year. Too many a--holes. I now get my coho from another river and spend my winters chasing cutthroat on the Fraser, peace and SOLITUDE.
 

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Take your son lake fishing! Too many aholes on the Vedder during Salmon season.Not the place for kids to learn about fishing.I have a 11 yr old son and will not take him on the Vedder.Its unfortunate but thats what its become.I feel for you man.
 

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Wow that really sucks. I would've used a bouncing betty and cast it at his head and say "sorry!" every time...
'Cause that always makes it better. Sink tip, let your son read this thread in a day or two. Maybe just copy and paste the posts you think reflect how you would wish him to be treated. He should know early that there are plenty of great people out there, not just morons.
 

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A sad day indeed Sinktip...unfortunately probably something that happens all too often on the river these days. I must commend you on your patience, but also because you did not condemn him for his actions. You even made excuses for him, accepting that there are always circumstances and sometimes reasons for peoples behaviour other than maliciousness, in this case I agree it was likely a healthy dose of ignorance on his part.

You took the high road on this one and that's a rare quality in a person. I have a great deal of respect for that. There is a positive in that your son learned from this and saw what people can be like, he now understands that and will always appreciate the value and quality of people he meets that have the same values as you.

I hope your son does read this later as Professori has suggested...

The guy just walked back staring downstream, avoiding eye contact. Couldn't even say sorry...I just hope he reads this and comes away with a tiny bit of an idea of what effect his actions had on 3 nice guys out for a day on the river, but more importantly, the effect they had on a boy named Fisher.
This was shame that punk was feeling as he walked past you...he knew it by his girlfriends actions and yours, and you should know it by his averted gaze.

If we're really lucky, your son wasn't the only person to learn something this day.

(Fisher, if you read this, there are a lot of people like this as you dad has probably told you, but there are also people that aren't like this at all. You can be proud that neither you, nor your dad or grandpa are like this, you should be proud of your dad for showing you a better way.)
 

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this is one of the main reasons i bit the bullet and went out and got a boat......i can take the two boys and dog out there and not run into morons like that. But that being said, some of that still happens with boats.....anchored some where and some one pulls up and anchors right in your drift. Along with a fishing licence should be an etiquette test!!
 

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"This was shame that punk was feeling as he walked past you...he knew it by his girlfriends actions and yours, and you should know it by his averted gaze."

"If we're really lucky, your son wasn't the only person to learn something this day."

^^This!!^^I'm sure he felt some embarassment from his actions. If that guy didn't get the message from this he's a real piece of work!
 

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The Vedder, or Stave, or any of the other local rivers are chock a block with morons. But, as you've probably learned now, fishing with your child is no time to even think about getting into any sort of confrontation. The best thing you could have done is move on, and find another spot. Keep the comments and thoughts to yourself and keep it a positive experience for your son. Now, when you are with adults, by all means, have at-er.
 

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Sadly, I only see these types of situations becoming more and more commonplace as the years go by and is also the reason I bought a boat. Hats off to you for keeping a level head as that would have tried my patience for sure. In the end I most likely would have taken the high road and moved on if I were in your place but it sucks on so many levels that the arrogant, ignorant, unethical, immoral, belligerent, and confrontational angler (and I use the term "angler" loosely) wins out. I have heard the expressions "Time spent fishing can't be deducted from your life." and "A bad fishing is better than a good day at work." but I'm now wondering if those expressions hold any water these days. The term "combat fishing" seems to have taken their place.
 

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i'm sorry to hear that happened to you. stuff like that happened to me all the time when i lived in Abbotsford and fished all those rivers. it got to the point that i don't miss fishing there at all. i have no regrets whatsoever of moving north where i can enjoy fishing without worrying about crap like that. i haven't "shared" a fishing hole with anyone except my fishing partner all season.

i truly feel for all the real sportsmen down there who just want to have a good time and have to deal with it. hopefully your kid is able to get over it and perhaps give coho fishing another try. it really is worth it when you get away from other people. :)
 

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Sorry to hear about the bad expierence there Sink tip, as some of my fondest memories of my grandfather were times we spend on the water. I had the opposite incident happen yesterday. We had scouted this hole on Thursday, big back eddy on one side with dead calm water and the main current on the edge of it, the coho were stacked and rolling. Fished another area Fri with plans to hit it first spot Sat. I arrived ther at 7 ish and there were two guys on one side and two fly guy's on the other working the slack water, no one on the edge of the eddie. I walked up to the fly guy and asked if they would mind if I worked the slot beside them. "Have atter buds", was the response. We had the hole covered, fly guys were working their magic, the guys across chucking blades were getting fish and I was sucsessfully gut chuckin the slot. Mid mornig one of the guys shouts over if I wanted to swap with him for a while, sure what the heck, It was perhaps one day that I think will stick with me for a while, The comrodery was some thing you rarely see any more on the Vedder. Though this morning things went back to normal with the sunny weather. As crappy as a day that was for you Sink tip, brush it off there are still some good guys out on the water, next time may be like my yesterday.
Cheers,
 

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Sorry this happened to your family, very frustrating. Hopefully you and you son and father can get back out on the river soon, don't let this deter you from spending quality time with your family, guys like that come along very rarely, so get back out on the water and make some memories with your son. Karma will take care of the other guy.
 

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Hey sinktip. First off, I'm sorry to hear of your experience. You definitely took the high road - and good on you for providing an example for your son. That is the most important part of this story. Be the man you want him to be.

Secondly, there's no excuse for that behaviour. Sure, we were all young and I remember when I fished before I had kids. I'll tell you that I never used four letter words - esp. in front of children. You say the guy looked experienced. Well, experienced fishers with no kids don't arrive at the river on a Saturday at 7 AM expecting to get the sweet spot of the run. From what you described, this guy has problems that run deeper than you or I care to consider. Hopefully his g/f will wake up and smell the coffee. The good thing is guys like this are not too common.

One day I hope to take my daughters out with me. I'm going to start off with lakes - my oldest who will be 4 next week wants to catch a rainbow trout!
 

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wow, that is a very sad story, where i live and fish we never run into ppl like that, pretty lucky up here on the north island, some of the things ive read this year about fishing in the LML are extremely disturbing and troubling and i sure wouldnt be fishing over there anytime soon, call me old fashioned, but searing in front of kids and women?, pretty damn disrespectful if ya ask me, too bad, and i truely feel for ya, just goes towards showing the guys character, pretty selfish...like others have said, what goes around comes around and karma will take care of that clown....holmes*
 

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take your son out again soon,show him how much fun he can have. you cannot forget the bad days but the good always overshadow them.show him how to fish thats what he will remember.its been years since i have fished with my dad but i am sure there were jerk asses around way back then i just do not remember it.if you want to have some fun when you are done for the day just find a crowd and plunk you and your son down on a rock and watch the show.you can show your son how stupid people can be and how much different the two of you are.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for all the kind comments. Like my Dad said after reading this; on one hand it it is really great to know that there are so many decent folks out there who still have the values and respect that we associate with being a true outdoorsman. On the other hand, it would seem that there are an awful lot of people who share similar experiences, some whom have given up on the idea of respect on the river banks and have instead turned to boats, lakes, or are simply staying away.
I know that I could have just stood there and let that guy take advantage, but I have always said I would teach my son to stand up for himself. To say nothing would show my boy that it's OK to let people take advantage of you and that if you act like that guy, you get the reward. I would never pick a fight, but I do not think we should meekly turn away when faced with a situation. I feel that is part of the trouble with the world today; very few people stand up for what they know is right any more.
A long time ago I did something on the river that was similar to what this guy did to us; I moved in on someone's spot and inadvertently flushed the trout that he was slowly moving in on. He was pissed at me and gave me hell. The truth is I did it because I thought I could get away with it. He was older and his words never left me, I will never do that again. Hopefully, the guy from Saturday will think twice next time.
Thanks for all the kind words, I will let my son read this in the next day or two after he's had a few days to think about other things.

Sink Tip
 
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