The weather might have been doomy and gloomy in the Elk Valley last Sunday but the Fishing Gods held off the rain so the FRGC could host their 1st Annual Youth Fishing Day at the Kootenay Trout Hatchery. It was an overwhelming success as kids as young as two were pulling in fish from the Hatchery Fishing Pond. “It was great to see such a great turnout when the weather was so bad in Fernie when we left,” explains Marasco, “there were twice as many participants here as we were expecting!”
Everybody had a chance to take a tour of the Fish Hatchery to see all the different types of fish the hatchery produces, the ins and outs of fish reproduction and stocking methods and the different methods in transporting the fish to their new homes. At the end of the tour the kids (and many adults) fed some of the huge rainbows in the shallow pools at the entrance to the hatchery. Some of these rainbows were in excess of 20lbs and nearly three feet long. No fingers were lost in the feeding and petting but there was one close call when one of the giant rainbows tried tasting a fingertip.
At the Fishing Ponds, kids, parents and volunteers surrounded the lake to try to catch some of the big rainbows swimming around. All different types of bait and techniques were used to try to catch some of these great rainbows. It was all catch and release with a few pictures in between of the happy fishermen. There were a few broken lines and many stories of the big one that got away.
There was also a Fly Fishing Course offered by Paul and Becky from the Elk River Guiding Company for anyone that was interested in learning the techniques of fly fishing and after some of the participants returned to the pond with their fly rods they managed to land a few rainbows.
Everybody enjoyed a great lunch cooked up by FRGC BBQ Chef Vern McGarrigle and then headed back to the fish pond to once again try to catch the big one.
Overall, it was a great kickoff for the Club’s Youth Fishing Program. During this summer the FRGC plans on having some different fun and instructional days to get kids enjoying the great sport of fishing.
The Club would like to remind everybody to bring their cleaned fish into Fernie to be weighed for entry into the Fishing Awards at the Annual Banquet. Each and every youth that enters a fish will receive a plaque at next year’s banquet. There are many different awards in the fishing category including the Most Species Entered by a Youth. This Grand Prize Winner receives a Tackle Box filled with an armful of fishing tackle.
Cleaned fish can be brought to the Fernie Meat Market or Back Country Meats and Sausage to be weighed and entered in to the contest.
A Big Thank You to everybody that came out and helped make this event so successful, we could not have done it without YOU!!
FRGC Youth Fishing Committee