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Fishing Etiquette

by Schmidt Outfitters Staff

Etiquette
Etiquette begins with understanding fish movements and having knowledge of the methods for fishing a river. Combine these skills with a sense of courtesy and you’ll generally find an angler with a strong fishing etiquette. One of the reasons we like to fish is to enjoy a little space of our own and to communicate with Mother Nature. Enjoying an outdoor activity that does not intrude on others is a pleasure and a right. With this in mind there are some guidelines we suggest anglers follow:
  • Pack out what you carry in.
  • Carry a small trash bag and pick up trash others have left behind. It will make you feel good to clean up your river or lake.
  • When another angler is present in an area you wish to fish, observe which way the angler is fishing, upstream or downstream. Always fish behind where the angler has fished. Never cut in front of where the angler is fishing. Front is relative to the direction the angler is fishing. It is correct and courteous to ask “Do you mind if I fish here?” or “Which direction are you fishing?” if the direction is not obvious.
  • If fishing with a partner, ask if your partner likes to fish fast or slow. Try to pace fishing at the same rate to avoid conflict and waiting.
  • When operating a watercraft around other anglers, do so with respect to them. Go behind the area others are fishing, and if operating a power craft, slow to a no-wake to minimize disturbance.
  • A general rule of thumb: if your activity irritates or disturbs others enjoying the same space you should reconsider your activity. For example, jet skiing at a pristine fly fishing spot or fly fishing at a premier jet skiing spot causes irritation to the people already using the spot correctly.
  • If you are new to an area, find a local fly shop and ask a few basic questions. When you’re on the stream, courtesy begins with asking when you are in doubt about an issue.


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