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Renneberg

I was wandering if you trout anglers that fish S.E. Minnesota would be interested in a Catch and Release contest. The contest could be held by the Hiawatha Chapter with all the proceeds going to habitat improvement projects. It isn't a contest yet but if shown enofe interest it could be one as early as next year.
As it stands now it could be both a fly fish and spin fish contest. Fly fisherman would have one day of fishing and spin fisherman another. Both would have to fish with one fly or one lure. No bait fishing would be allowed since the idea would be not to kill large trout and thus improving the numbers of large trout. Non anglers would have to measure the trouts length and girth. The angler with the largest trout would win.
I would like to hear your thoughts about having it and any ideas about improving it. Everyones thought and ideas will be read and taken under consideration.
Remember the idea isn't set in stone yet, so certain things can and must likly will change to make it a better contest for everyone.
If you have any question about the contest ask, I'll do my best to answer them.
Even if you don't like the idea of a C&R contest or if you like the idea but not certain parts of it say something.

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Jim W

Renneberg, welcome!

Interesting?!?!???

I guess I can speak for others, you are....??? a member of....?. explain Hiawatha Chapter for everyone. Definitely a neat idea with a lot of refining needed, but if you want, your more than welcome to join us at Trout Day in Forestville/Mystery Cave State park April 27th to share your ideas in person with other fly fishing/spin fisherman!!

Other questions, are you implying you can't kill a "large trout" with a rapala or spinner or #14 dry fly?
"Non anglers will have to measure the trouts girth and length" What???

I am not trying to be rude, but revision is definitely in order here! You did come to the right place. I believe we all are conscience of the need for continued conservation in the streams and rivers of SE MN!! MOst would be happy to join in a day like you suggest, but you'll need to do some refining.

I am sure others will give their opinions soon hereafter!

Welcome aboard!

PS. Renneberg do you have a way I can contact you outide of the forum?

Jim W

[This message has been edited by Jim W (edited 03-25-2002).]

[This message has been edited by Jim W (edited 03-25-2002).]

[This message has been edited by Jim W (edited 03-25-2002).]

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Guest

Largest trout wins??? That tips the scales definitely to spin fishers as the territory in less amount of time that they can cover greatly overshadows fly fishers. The chances of spinfishers losing the "one" lure they can fish with versus one fly isn't even comprable.

What is the entry fee in terms of dollars??

If you think you can get enough volunteers for two days, then good luck. I thought the point of the whole thread on the "other site was against the local fishing contests. While I appreciate your concern for all methods of non-bait angling, pick one or the other: spinning or not as the method of your contest. It's too tough to pull off both. There's nothing wrong with making a contest spin fishing only or fly fishing only.

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Renneberg

Thank you Jim W and Hopper. Yes it does need some work but this is why I posted it. Myself and others are working out all the problems in the idea on a different page. The reason I posted it on this page is because very few people have responded to the idea on the other page.

To answer your question, yes I am a member of TU(Trout Unlimited). Twin Cities Chapter to be exact.

Hiawatha Chapter is a Chapter of MNTU. They are located in Elba, Minnesota. If anyone would like to know more about MNTU visit their site.
The hole idea of a C&R contest is improve the number of large trout in S.E. minnesota, and to promote the practice of catch and release. Other contest you have to bring the trout in and have it weighted, thus killing the trout. It doesn't take to many years of contest like this to strip a river of its big trout. The most common question I hear people ask is why aren't there more big trout in S.E. minnesota? The reason is simple. Very few anglers practice C&R. The Minnesota DNR say that once a trout reaches 12 inches in length it is harvested. They go into greater detail on their web page.

In order to keep people from just making up a number and saying they caught a fish that size we would have a neutral party confirm the catch.

We are still deciding on if we should go on total length of trout caught, or just one trout entered per angler, for example; you just started fishing early in the day and you land a 18 inch brown. Do you release the trout and hope for a bigger one later in the day or do you enter and hope its one of the biggest trout caught that day. Once release or entered you can't turn back.

Jim W you can e-mail me at Captain3955@AOL.com

Hope I answered your questions.

Hopper thanks for the reply.

Which do you think would balance out the field, total length of trout caught, only one trout entered per angler, or make it out so there are two suppurate catergories, one fly fish and one spin fish with winners in each catogory. Each would fish on a different day. My personal favorite is the last one. That way fly fisherman aren't competing with the spin fisherman.

Thanks again for the replies and don't forget to check out MNTU

[This message has been edited by Sarge (edited 03-25-2002).]

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Guest

Your data about trout over 12 inches is correct. However, the DNR would like to play up the fact that their electroshcoking data shows how many MORE trout there are in our streams than ever before. They aren't too eager to point out that the data falls off the edge of the table after 12 inches. I should know I helped distribute "Trout Facts" back a few years ago for the Hiawatha Chapter (Rochester, MN by the way...), which took DNR electroshocking data and gave anglers the true facts about the state of the fishery, which in terms of significant populations of large fish is really nonexistent.

Anyway, back to the topic....I still think you'll have problems having two separate days of a "contest." How are you going to get potentially many judges for several days, that is considering what the entry fee would be (what would the entry fee be?) I guess you'll never know until you actually try it. Why give the $ to the Hiawatha Chapter and not Win Cres? Why not get the TCTU sponsor it since they don't actively get behind any projects in southeast MN? How do you decide who is the better angler: the one who catches 5 fish totaling 40 inches or the one who catches one fish that is 18 inches? If you have two spearate categories, are there two separate sets of criteria - one for spinners and one for flyers? I still think you're trying to be too accomodating to all potentially interested parties.

Let's say the entry fee is $50 per angler. How many spin fishermen would get in versus fly fishermen? Go to the local bars in Elba and try and recruit the locals to spin fish for a $50 entry. I'm not suggesting the spin guys are cheap, but they are a different crowd (no better nor worse) than the fly fishing crowd. I know - I guide them in the summer. Point being, if you want to make $ for the resource, would it be better served concentrating on one particular method versus another?

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Sarge

Renneberg, its always nice to hear from people trying to come up with ways to improve our fisheries. With every idea that comes along there will be someone who will not like it,I would probably fall into that category on this one.

I agree that large trout contests, especially those on opener are detrimental to trout in general, And I have never participated in one. A C&R contest probably could be made to work, but two day events would be a hard sell, conditions vary way to much from day to day to make it fair, and you would have a hard time getting me to follow along watching someone for a day and not participating. Maybe if you draw names and both fish together, close enough to call your partner over without stressing the fish.

Another problem you would have would be combining spinfishing and flyfishing. The "One Fly" contest is intriguing and could probably get numbers of TU guys to participate. But with you throw in "spinfishing"-I'm having a hard time making it workout in my head?

Another consideration to me and probably many others is TU itself. In 2001 there were 97,564 trout stamps sold in MN, how many members does TU have statewide? I was a dues paying member for about 8 years, because I wanted to support our fisheries and learn more, But after seeing the way it was run, elitism, personal attacks, and in general little help from most of the members I decided I no longer wanted to be invovled. Don't get me wrong TU has accomplished many good things, and there are some really nice people, but at the time it was not enough. Maybe things have changed?

But since this idea is to raise money for TU, maybe TU should find ways to make the organization more appealing to the masses. (More people= more power= more$$$=more accomplished)IMHO. Reaching out and including spinfishers would certainly increase TU$$$$$.

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GullGuide

Jim,
Email me...I lost your addy!!!

------------------
>"////=<
Gull Guide Service
fishingminnesota.com/gullguide
Brainerd-Mille Lacs-Willmar
Bemidji-Ottertail

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Jim W

Renneberg,

Call me confused, one apple shy or whatever, but I am a little puzzled how having a fishing contest would improve the large trout fishing in SE MN?

Thanks however, for your passion to serve and protect our wonderful natural resource. It takes a lot of time(believe me) to orginize anything. LEt alone, pleasing everyone! Keep at it!! SOmetimes you need to just do it! Then make changes in retrospect!

Careful Hopper, getting close to stigmatizing spin fisherman!?!?!lol

Keep the rods bendin'!!! Folks!!!

Jim W

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Renneberg

As it stands right now the contest will be a one fly contest. Fly fishing only. It does look like it will happen next year since members of the Hiawatha Chapter have shown great interest in the idea. So far no one has said anything bad about having it.
I am a TU guy. I've been one for less then a month and I'm starting to see what you are saying about TU members. The other people that are helping with my idea have been very closed minded about any other angling method outside of fly fishing for this contest. I keep hearing members crying about how they need more money for H.I. projects. If they would open their eyes, they would realize that spin fisherman would draw in more money for H.I. projects, but they just keep turning their heads the other way. I was a member of the Brule River sportsman club for several years. They have just over 500 members nation wide, but are able to maintain a 60+ mile river. They do such a good job that WISTU and Wisconsin DNR don't need to do any thing to the river as far as H.I. projects are concerned. They also do much much more outside of river projects. More then all of MNTU Chapters combined. The reason why is that they are open minded to other angling methods outside of fly fishing and thus draw more anglers into the club. I wish that there was a sportsman club somewhere in southeastern minnesota. I know that I would be a member.
Thanks again for the replies.

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Guest

Being a TU member for a whole month, are you in a position to make generalizations about what the Minnesota TU members do and don't do, what the want and what they don't want, how they act or should act??

Let's call a spade a spade. The TCTU has the largest member base in the state, yet their banquet will raise only ballpark what the Hiawatha Chapter does. The Hiawatha Chapter does more miles of H.I. than TCTu could dream about. Let's be honest, there aren't many worth while coldwater conservation causes in the Metro. I'm sorry, but I cannot justify thousands upon thousands of dollars being spent on low gradient streams that run through the ever burgeoning population of Mpls./St. Paul, not to mention the thousands upon thousands that go into saving a poor trout stream that runs through a golf course AND more importantly, spending thousands upon thousands of dollars in stream easements in teh process. Ever see what kind of chemicals go on a golf course (oxymoron: environmentally safe lawn chemicals). Maybe there would be more money for H.I. if some of the coldwater organizations put their money into relevant causes like preserving the southeastern portion of our state. I'm not here to bad mouth TCTU, but you want to talk about chapters that carry the load - then you're talking about the Hiawatha Chapter. No other chapters combined do as much - perhaps your pursuite for habitat improvement monies needs to come from the other chapters (like TCTU).

I'm a non-participatory Hiawatha Chapter member by choice, and I'm one of the guys who said there needs to be more diversity in who comprises the chapter. However, the reality of getting enough people interested to help with a two day event, let alone charge the participants it a larger project than you think. Bottom line, while there are many knowledgable and decent posters who spin fish on this site, the reality is, are you going to get a significant number of people who will want to pay to participate in a catch and release contest? I doubt it.

What you're talking about is a radical change of how Trout Unlimited in this area views persons who fish other than with a fly rod. Plus you need to convince those who aren't TU people but are ardent coldwater anglers that don't use a fly rod to join a cause like TU or would be welcome at TU finction. I've been to them and spin fishing and bait fishing is not a hot topic unless it is to bad mouth them. It can be done; but it won't be done by holding a fishing contest. It will take much more than that.

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Renneberg

Jim W I'm sitll waiting to hear what you wanted to say off the forum. E-mail me a Captain3955@AOL.com

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Renneberg

Hopper I think you heard me wrong. I am saying that TU in general doesn't like spin anglers. Just go to MNTU web page and look at what many of them say about spin fishing. I know that not all of them feel this way, but the ones that do make it out to be as if spin anglers are the ones responsible for the large number of small trout in S.E. Minnesota, and that they are the only one who care about the trout enofe to improve a stream.
We both know thats not true. I don't blame a spin fisherman for not joining TU since the majorty of TU members don't like how the fish for trout.
I then went on to say that sportsmans club act the same as TU but don't care how you fish for trout, and that this is the reason that they are doing so well and spreading. In some causes even replacing TU chapters. If TU chapters want to double there numbers they have to realize spin fisherman care just as much as fly fisherman when it comes to improving the states trout fishing.
You stated earlier that there were 97,564 trout stamps sold last year. I'm willing to say that over 90% of stamp buyers are not TU members. That's alot of potential members that the TU chapters aren't capitalizing on, and sportsmans clubs are.

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Renneberg

Jim W, it sounds like the contest is good to go. I don't know when its going to be held or what all the rules are yet. We'll have to give them time on that, but I'll do my best to keep you posted.
I can't make it down for trout days, because I'll be fishing for some big browns up north that weekend. I'll be there next year for sure.

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Guest

Read the post again - I never suggested that TU did encourage spin fishers to join, in fact, the complete opposite was said: spin fishers are a non-entity in the TU Minnesota world. The reality is that NOTHING is said about spin fishing, interpret that either way - positively or negatively. I bet most members feel the bait fishers, not the spin fishers, are responsible for the lack of trout over 12 inches. Personally, I don't blame the spin or bait fishers, I blame the DNR for having such liberal rules that people can take advantage of. People keep five trout because they CAN!! It's not a TU issue, it's a regulations issue.

I disagree completely about the role sportsman's clubs have - name for me any sportsman club in southeast Minnesota that takes trout seriously or improving the habitat seriously? They may have numbers, but what is their aim?? They are a club, not a coldwater organization - do you really think they are for protecting and preserving the resource?? They are all about angler rights and haing that ability to catch and keep trout.

I never once stated statistics about who bought a trout stamp or what organization they belong to. Do I think not enough people are in TU - yes. Do I think not enough anglers need a reason to join Tu - yes, again. I agree there's too much alienation; perhaps cleaning out the hierarchy of TU, which has seen virtually no change for the past 20 years, might be an answer. People are tired of seeing the same faces in charge of the future of coldwater resources. I know, I talk to many former TU members on the trout streams each year.

Good luck in your quest to make a positive difference....

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Renneberg

Hopper if you want to see what a well run sportsmens club does check this club out www.bruleriversportsmenclub.com. Read their news letters to see what they do. That river alone receives about as much pressure as the Whitewater and Root river conbined in a average summer, yet still produces big trout.
I do agree with you that the DNR should have a size limit for trout. There just to afraid of making too many anglers mad.

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Guest

So what's the point of this thread - to start a sportsmen's group of your own, to brag about the success of sportsmen's groups in other states, or to raise money for the trout resource by hosting a fishing contest, and in turn getting more people signed up for TU? Isn't there a huge difference between TU and a sportsman's group???

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Renneberg

Hopper you remind me of someone else on the other page. But with one big difference. I won't say who I think you are because you may not want everyone to know, which would be why your under a different name on this page.
After I seen what was posted about how big a H.I. project is for Hiawatha is(1600 feet), I would have to say, yes sportsmens club are better since they can maintain and improve rivers over 60 miles long.

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Renneberg

Hopper you remind me of someone else on a different page. Since you are under a different name here on this page I'm not going to say who I think you are, since you may not want other people to know. Its funny how you say one thing on one page and another on this page.
No, I'm not trying to start a club, but I would help anyone out that is or would like to start a sportsmen club.
Yes, the hole idea of the contest is to help the Hiawatha Chapter with H.I. projects. Hopefully with my idea they can do another 300 feet or so.
Yes, there is one huge difference in sportsmen clubs then there is in TU. Sportsmen club do a better job of maintaining a hole river vs. 1600 feet of a river by TU.

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Guest

I don't see what the point of discussing a fishing contest that won't happen until 2003, so on to happier subjects.....

Despite less than ideal conditions, I ventured out today to fish the "opener." After fishing the winter catch and release streams heavily last week, it was nice to get out and get on some different water.

Even though the snow was driving and the wind cold, I caught fish all day on #14 orange scuds and a few on stone fly patterns. Stomach pumping revealed a significant number of caddis pupae, but I didn't do real well on them. The highlight of the day was a thick burly 19 inch brown that like all his counterparts was pretty sluggish in the cold water.

Ran into one angler as I was leaving, Norm Zimmerman, from SW Wisconsin - one of Ross Mueller's fishing buddies and a contributor to Ross' books. He's a super nice guy, so we swapped stories about streams in the area and parted ways.

The areas I fished did not have nearly the snow as Rochester got, but they were dusted with an inch or so.

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mark p

The Hiwatha chapter has at least one member who is a bait fisherman (me) and I have been a member for about 6 years. I would never admit that at a meeting though because of what I have heard people there say about bait fisherman. I did however buy a fly rod last year and used it a couple times so maybe I can go now without hanging my head too low. I am basically a non-participating TU member because I just don't have the time. As a matter of fact I rarely ever attend meetings anymore.

You really have to look past some of the people involved and decide if the organization does enough that it is worth giving your money to, and time if you have it. I decided that joining TU (donating money) was the best way for me to help the resource in SE MN since I wasn't willing to do the actual work myself. I just wish TU would recognize that they could be so much more powerful if they would invite everyone to join.

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Jim W

It's truly unfortunate that a fishing technique gives a person the right or the feeling they have the right to stigmatize, label and judge others who choose not to use their technique!! WHether or not the person spins all of the time or not!

They are only turning people away. I value my resource probably more than most of those jokers! Those jokers being the ones that made you feel uncomfortable Mark!!!!

Keep doing what you do and enjoy best! Not letting anyone dis-value your belief system or methods of conservation!!!!


Jim W

[This message has been edited by Jim W (edited 04-09-2002).]

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Renneberg

Mark P. I don't think that your the only member of TU that fishes with live bait. Someone posted a report about fishing live bait with circle hooks on MN TU web page. They reported that they didn't hook one trout in the guts.

I don't know for sure if this person is a member or not, but it took alot of guts to post a report like that on a page that is used by so many fly fishermen that hate bait fishermen.

Have you ever tried circle hooks for trout Mark P.?

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fish4life

Mark P. Im with you one hundred percent. My best argument for bait fisherman and artificial fisherman is that you have to learn how to fish trout somewhere and id like to see someone try to teach their son or daughter to fly fish their first time out fishing. I fly fish as well but i will never stop worm dunking or spinning. If someone gave me the choice to worm dunk and spin or fly fish id choose to dunk and spin just because the only good places to fly fish in SEMN are always crowded and id rather fish otherwise and not see another person on the water.

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Jimmy

hello all, I,m a flyfisherman (c&r) and in my youth I did alot of spin and live bait trout fishing. My answer to the gut hooking problem was to use a hook large enough that the trout would not be able to swallow. When spinning for trout I would use a single hook. And I would always crimp the barb. I know some people would disagree with me saying these methods don't work but I know for a fact, tried and true, they do. I've had great success. And on the contrary to your arguments I know alot of people who spin for trout that readily practice c&r.
Jim

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