Letter: Fishing contest too easy for anglers | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Fishing contest too easy for anglers

Fishing contest too easy for anglers

I hope the Team USA Fly Fishing Tournament created the big boost for the town of Basalt that its main supporter — the Basalt Chamber of Commerce — thought that it would.

There are many cool things about competition and many uncool things about competition — and competition at the expense of other living beings crosses a moral borderline that people should think about carefully unless those other living beings exist simply as commodity to be exploited.

Some people believe that the only competition on rivers should be between an individual angler and the specific fish they are trying to catch. And when that fish chooses to eat the fly, the fisherman has won that competition against the fish — not against another fisherman who he must beat by repeating this over and over and over.

To ensure a more pure ethic, the Fédération Internationale de Peche Sportive Mouche rules of competition need to be changed.

Only the competitors and their controller (judge for their beat) will truly know how many fish were foul hooked this weekend, which is all too easy to do in shallow water with 3-weighted — sometimes bright — nymphs that are "jigged" in front of the fish.

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To make sure that the fish are not exploited and have a choice in this "competition," change the rule to state that only fish hooked in the mouth count.

And then, may the best angler — and fish — and chamber — win.

David Johnson

Crystal Fly Shop

Carbondale