OK – so creating this blog is a test of the time-honored expression that “you’re never too old start something new”. Actually, after a one-year pause, my intent is for this to be a continuation of the weekly column I wrote for two dozen years before the newspaper it was published in went out of business in late March 2015.
At first it was kind of fun to not have to create what I referred to in my own mind as my “weekly homework assignment”. But old habits die hard and I frequently found myself mentally drafting the text on a topic of relevance to the BC recreational fishery, even though it wasn’t going to get written.
As well I met those – many of who said they didn’t even fish! – who were kind enough to express their disappointment that the Ardent Angler column was no longer to be found. Somewhat to my surprise these sort of encounters continued on as the months passed, albeit at a slowly reduced frequency, but even last week I was introduced to a total stranger who was quick to tell me that her weekly reading was the poorer for my columns’ absence.
So thus encouraged and with the modern capability to self-publish, here goes – much the same product I hope, with a different delivery model. I aim to try for a weekly publication schedule but not having an imposed deadline this might vary a little according to season and subject matter at hand.
An assessment of the previous version of this column would suggest that it was frequently focused on issues affecting recreational fisheries management, a category that only seems to be growing in importance as time passes. I wrote about personal fishing trips, with a bit of “how to” and “where to go” mixed in, although I’ve never felt particularly expert in any style of fishing, any knowledge worth passing on being won through hard-won experience. I have one small creek in particular I keep an eye on and so occasionally my experiences in what is called stream stewardship made it into print.
As in the past, the majority of what I expect to be writing about will be saltwater based; in truth I do relatively little freshwater fishing these days, especially with the decline of steelhead in my home area around Campbell River. I know there will be those anglers who would comment that I just don’t fish in the right time at the right place, likely all too true, but there’s no escaping the fact that steelhead fishing around much of central Vancouver Island isn’t what it once was.
The other factor is that I keep my powerboat in the water year-round and it needs to be run once in a while. The winter fishery for chinooks can be good, sometimes excellent, and they are the best tasting fish bar none so the majority of my personal non-summer fishing in the past fifteen years has shifted from river to ocean; it’s just the way it is.
I’m hopeful that a readership of this blog will develop, so as my granny was wont to say, “nothing ventured, nothing gained” – time will tell I guess and thanks for looking in.