by Jeff Goldberg
“Lake George is, without comparison, the most beautiful water I ever saw; formed by a contour of mountains into a basin thirty-five miles long, and from two to four miles broad, finely interspersed with islands, its water limpid as crystal and the mountain sides covered with rich groves of thuja, silver fir, white pine, aspen and paper birch down to the water edge, here and there precipices of rock to checker the scene and save it from monotony. An abundance of speckled trout, salmon trout, bass, and other fish with which it is stored, have added to our other amusements the sport of taking them ….” – Thomas Jefferson, a letter to his daughter (1791)
Wow, can you imagine that! 219 years ago, a description of a place that is still current. If you are reading this, you can feel the same experience that the third president of the United States did. In his letter he said, “An abundance of speckled trout, salmon trout, bass, and other fish with which it is stored, have added to our other amusements the sport of taking them ….” The trout and salmon in today’s world have to be managed. In order to do a good job in the management of any body of water, the biologist in charge needs to have good information about catch rates, the number of hours fished, and mortality rates among other things. Where does that information come from? There are several places. One of them is directly from anglers. On Lake George, there is a cooperative angler program that is administered by the local biologist for the New York State Department of Enviornmental Conservation (DEC). Over the past several years, I have tried to enlist cooperators with some limited success. I cannot understand why so few are willing to help. I hear them saying “I do not catch enough fish,” “I do not spend enough days fishing,” “I am only here 1 week a year,” etc, etc.
Here is the deal. We need cooperators!! We need this information from everybody. There is no shame if you did not produce. No one knows who sent the books. It helps with making the proper stocking decisions if there are too many hours of no production. It is the total accumulated hours of fishing vs. the total number of hours fished that is important. We need everyone’s information, all added together, to make this continue to have “An abundance of speckled trout, salmon trout, bass, and other fish with which it is stored, have added to our other amusements the sport of taking them ….”
To find out about last year’s cooperator results that have been compiled, you can go to the Lake George Fishing Alliance website at www.lgfa.org. There were only 21 cooperators that has a lake that supports thousands of anglers per year. We need your help to continue to have and improve upon the fishing in this most beautiful place. At FISH307, we have made an agreement with the DEC to make cooperator books available. If you are here for just 3 days or a week or more, and you are going to fish for trout or salmon, you can pick up a book at the beginning of your trip and either drop it off at the end or mail it to the address on the book. This would be a tremendous help.
The same is true for ice fishing. Most people do not know this, but the fishing pressure on the lake is probably stronger in the winter than the summer. Lake George is a favorite fishing destination in the winter. The same attraction applies – the utmost beauty, the clear clean water, and the great fishing.
Help us keep it that way. Please stop in and cooperate.
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