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High water fishing blues

The weather was great the fishing less so
fishing 72
Adam Daniels out fishes his father at Canora Dam 1-0 on first day out in 2022.

CANORA DAY / YORKTON - Welcome to the first edition of ‘Fishing Parkland Shorelines’ for 2022. Like most of us I remain very much a novice fisherman, loving to fish, but far from an expert. In the following weeks I’ll again attempt to give those anglers who love to fish but just don’t have access to a boat a look at some of the options in the Yorkton area where you can fish from shore, and hopefully catch some fish for a good summer fry. 

The perspective of age changes things more than I had anticipated it would.

The changing of the years was always more a joke to me, something to pass off with a quip, rather than an actual change in the way I thought of things, or did things.

But, since hitting 60 a couple of years back, I notice some real change, including becoming increasingly a fair weather fisherman, and one who much prefers an evening of casting hooks than heading out in the morning. (OK I have never been a happy morning person much preferring a pillow and blanket in the a.m. to just about anything – fishing typically included.

It is also that time in my life where I want nice weather to fish. Yes, I can hear my father talking about how fish bite great amid a shower – more anecdote on his part than proven technique I assure – but I still like a warmer evening. Of course I don’t want it too hot either. I might have a general marshmallow shape but that doesn’t mean I want to melt while fishing.

Of course this change of attitude over time is likely not just an age related phenomenon. I think it has more to do with a changing attitude about the act of fishing.

For most of my roughly 55 years of tossing hooks it has been an act designed to catch fish to take home to enjoy fried in butter, preferably with a side of homemade French fries.

Now a trip to fish seems to only superficially be about catching a fish, perhaps because age has allowed me the perspective to enjoy other aspects of ‘the act of fishing’.

For example, growing up on a farm wild birds were all over the place, the tree line of the creek through the property and of course in the grasses of the sow pasture. I frankly paid them little attention.

Today, a pasal of common sparrows at the front yard feeder is something I enjoy simply watching.

So when fishing red-winged black birds in the reeds, common seagulls winging over the water, a group of pelicans swooping in low, or the mere sound of a killdeer’s call are fine trip enhancement which has nothing to do with catching a fish.

The time spent with my son, my usual fishing partner which I know makes me a lucky dad since often family leaves town these day, is also enjoyable. I’m fortunate we share several hobbies, board games, disc golf in addition to fishing, so we often do things together, but the solitude of fishing allows for lots of talk of the Roughriders and Blue Jays and the latest addition of the board game Dominion, which again can be enjoyed sans fish.

So, all of the above is a rather long path to a short talk about the first excursion to fish this spring.

Typically we get out opening day, if work schedules allow, or at least the weekend after opening, but this was the spring of dull, wet and cold, so the trip was delayed in accordance with my fair weather desires.

Finally, the sun was shining on a free day and my son and I headed to the Canora Dam. With all the rain I was expecting some fast-moving water to challenge our casting on day one of the season, but I was not expecting higher water levels than I ever recall at the dam.

With the water so high most fishing spots were actually under water and the few close spots were occupied, so we walked until we found a spot. There were still trees, one of which has a red five of diamonds of mine that the wind sent its way – a highlight of the evening actually.

There were birds to watch and a father/son talk, and I didn’t manage even a teasing nibble.

My son did get a walleye, but as I write this now there is still no jealously because he had to clean that fish when he got home. I was at the same time relaxing watching a DVRed Blue Jays game. The sage perspective of age suggests I actually had the better fishing trip that day.