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With the open water season upon us up here in the Great White North it seems like a good time to talk about kayak fishing etiquette when it comes to river fishing.When kayak fishing a river you’ll encounter everything from other anglers in boats,anglers wading,non anglers in boats,power boats and on many of our local rivers in Alberta the occasional thirsty cow. For most this will be old hat but for new kayak anglers it will help to ensure your days are as enjoyable as possible especially on high pressured waters.

Etiquette –
1. The customs or rules governing behavior regarded as correct or acceptable in social or official life

2. A conventional but unwritten code of practice followed by members of any of certain professions or groups

Launching – Don’t clog up boat ramps. When arriving be sure to get yourself geared up well away from the launch area. When you do get to the ramp (wait you turn if there’s a line up)unload your kayak quickly and move it to a safe location out of the way while parking your vehicle.

Fisherman in Boats – Give other anglers in boats lots of room. As a general rule stay far enough away to ensure you can’t cast the same water. You can definitely follow other boats through good water just don’t be so close as to crowd them in any way. Never pass boats only to cut them off and hit good holding spots first. When finding yourself in highly congested area’s I find it best to stop and wade for a while,allow the crowd to pass and continue on my way.

Wading Fisherman – Give fisherman on foot the right of way. Do your best not to disturb the area there fishing. When in tight quarters ask them which way they prefer you go.

Non Fisherman in Boats – When encountering non fisherman in boats don’t crowd them. They may not always keep there distance from you but typically it’s because they don’t know what your doing. Usually a few polite words will do the trick.

Landing – Again ,don’t clog up ramps.Land your boat quickly and move it out of the way.Retrieve your vehicle, load your kayak quickly and move off the ramp so other anglers don’t have to wait for you.

Making the most of your day spent on the river is everyone’s aim so do your best to avoid river rage. As the saying goes,”Treat others the way you wish to be treated”.