Wednesday, April 27, 2011
Below Then Above The Bridges Of Matapedia
My first endeavor into this style of Salar angling came in 1985 on the Matapedia River in Quebec. The river was not new to me but hiring a guide with a boat was.
The lower river was very different back then. What has happened over a short period of time is mainly the result of clear cut logging. When you remove the trees, sometimes within a short distance from the river bank, a number of bad things happen. The major problem is that the amount of water, after a heavy rain, that rushes into the river flow is accelerated to the point that the hydrological effects are far greater than these rivers have ever naturally experienced. The water in flow in harder bringing extra sediment. The forest does not act as a sponge releasing the water slowly so the river is then subject to low and warm periods during late summer. The extra sediment is carried down river and causes the lower stretches to fill in and widen.
Let's just say the lower pools of the Matapedia are not what they used to be. Some are completely gone and reside only in my memory.
I fished all the rest of that day and the next and the next without another take. I fished hard and felt so stupid. A world famous Matapedia guide I met many times, the late Richard Adams, would have been very upset with me for using anything lighter than twenty five pound test in June. Had I not been so brash to think that this was an easy game and I could temp the fate of the river, I would have had a fish that would be most anglers top trophy.
Today the catch limit is two salmon released for the day on the Glenn Emma water. Or two grilse and a salmon should the grilse come first. This is not the law. but is the chosen rule of sportsmen in Quebec. Personally, I have had a number of three and four fish days in my life. Mostly in New Brunswick where there is a four fish limit by law. I have had far more zero fish days, just for the record.
So what is the point of this story? I think it is that I should never take a fish for granted. Treat every precious moment as if it could be your last and savor in what is, and forget about what might be. Always do what is right..................