Keeping secret areas secret

The Forum is Closed. Forums The Drift Keeping secret areas secret

This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  BinnyDoreo 1 year, 2 months ago.

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    Scotty MacFly

    I haven’t read this subject on this forum, but it has showed up on other forums I have been on or just lingered about. It’s the subject of keeping your lakes and rivers that you fish secret. I read on another forum that the poster mentioned, and I’ll try to quote him, ” I don’t know if I am allowed to mention the river that I fish, because some forums don’t allow it.” I read the replies, and have noticed all the photo’s that are put on threads that people post to share their catches with everyone, and that’s fine with me. And one of the replies that came back on that thread mentioned that every river, stream, and lake he ever fished had been ruined because of people seeing some sort of a landmark in a photo, and now seeing it’s a good spot to fish, have come and trashed it. So don’t put any thing in the photo that people can see and find. So to make this shorter than what I’m terribly trying to do, some people don’t want to mention their rivers and lakes in fear of this problem.

    It got me to thinking. What about all the magazine articles then? I think if this is a real problem, the magazines are doing more harm than anyone else. I just got a new Fly Fisherman mag. in the mail today, and one of the featured articles is on my beloved Cache La Poudre……with pictures. And the first photo it shows, I can take you there. I don’t fish that spot because it attracts many people picnicing, and tubing and such. But the photo doesn’t show that. You can’t see the parking lot on the other side of the trees in the photo. HMMM, sneaky.

    The Poudre is in trouble, that’s why it’s in the magazine. It’s being threatened because they want to build dams and make two reservoirs. That will lower the water level in the river.

    But that’s another story.

    I did see a post saying that, on a forum, or just to anyone I guess, mentioning a river is not harmful because it covers a large area. Just don’t mention your secret fishing hole on that river because that’s giving more detail. I kind of agree with that.

    I’d like to know all of your opinions on this. Is giving a river or lakes name away a cardinal sin, or is it allowed as long as we don’t give away that secret hole that has the log sticking out of it where the turtles hang out sunning themselves under the tire swing? I dare you to find that spot, lol.

    I have to say, and this is my personal opinion, if this is a real issue, and I’m not saying it is or it isn’t, but if it is, I blame fishing magazines and maybe even fishing tv shows for this. Except for The New Fly Fisher tv show. It’s their job to show you resorts and lodges to stay at on a fishing trip, and they balance it very well. But shows like our local fishing show here in Colorado, The Fishful Thinker, I can see that show to be harmful. But again, it’s their job to support and advertise this sport, so I can’t really blame them. How else are they to do it? You can’t be a tv fishing host and say to the viewers, ” hello, I’m your host, Fisher Fisherton, and today we are on the banks of the stinky muddy river somewhere in a remote area that you will never find.” Nope, can’t do that. It’d be funny, but no.

    So what do you think?



    You raise a number of points, all good.

    Hotspotting is a problem. An example is my favorite Great Lakes steelhead creek – what was a good local fishery was touted as “world class” by a certain river pimp in FF magazine in the late 90’s and the crowds followed. Well, it was never world class, it’s too small and too close to major population centers to stand up to the beating it’s suffered since. There had been a gentleman’s agreement among guides and fishing writers to keep this stream on the down low in print (or internet, which was in then its infancy) until those of us who were fighting for some special regulations to protect its wild fish had made progress on that front. (about 25% wild/75% hatchery in the mid 90’s according to state biologists my local TU chapter helped in their research) But River Pimp is a remorseless self promoter (he’s published a number of books and his byline is still often found in FF) and that was that. The explosion of internet blabbing didn’t help, but you can point to that article in FF as the beginning of the end.

    The creek remains under general regulations (three steelhead a day limit, no restrictions on bait, barbless hooks, no-kill of wild unclipped fish etc) Where a polite request once brought permission to cross private land to fish now large segments of river have been bought up by “lodges” and posted, and what’s left is almost “bring your own rock to stand on” even during off-peak times. It’s heartbreaking to see a place I truly loved all but ruined.

    As to whether to not mention anything that could point to identifying a lake or river, well I guess it depends. I mean, everyone knows about the Henry’s Fork or the Deschutes so there’s little point in keeping mum about them. But except to inflate his own ego why would anyone with a functioning brain mention by name some little blue line that can’t take much pressure?

    Or as Nick Lyons once wrote, “I’d rather go into the worm business than become known as a popularizer of secret spots.”


    Scotty MacFly

    Wow, that’s quite a story Grs. It’s too bad things like that have to happen to nice areas. I for one have no issue in saying things like the Arkansas river fishes really well between August and Oct., but to mention a certain spot on the Ark. on a forum I won’t do. Too many people who are non members I hear tend to look around on forums looking for such sweet spots. Whether it’s true or not, I can’t say.

    I will say I have mentioned some spots in private, but these are spots that are well known by many, not like out of the way places where you have to walk in a bit, but places that are right in front of your face, like telling a friend to go try the big bend on the creek that runs through the middle of town. Places that are good areas, but not a place I like to go to be alone and enjoy the surroundings of a clean wild natural environment.



    Sometimes, you have to keep your own heavenly lake away from prying eyes, otherwise, more and more will come to visit it, bringing in a lot of regulations in the future.

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