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Never too young to learn ice fishing
The age-old angler’s adage about the worst day fishing proved true on the frozen surface of Yellow Lake, Sunday.
Nearly 100 youngsters, bundled up in multiple layers of clothing, the only signs of life being the eyes showing from within the cotton cocoons, took part in the Kids Learn-to-Ice -Fish event. Even the cold winds, blowing snow and limited fish catching did little to dampen the spirits of the participants in the popular winter pastime.
For some of the kids, interest waned quickly and they were soon off exploring deer trails on shore, building snowmen or just laying immobile in the accumulating snow.
Still others like Joseph Trudel of the First Oliver Scouts sat stoically on overturned plastic pails watching for the slightest sign of any marine presence.
“I’ve had a lot of bites already and I’m really having a lot of fun but still no luck getting anything out yet,” said the 11-year-old.
The event was organized by the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and the Freshwater Fisheries Society of B.C.
According to Ken Sward, Region 8 president of the B.C. Wildlife Federation, young people are the future of the sport.
“There’s lots of families out here fishing —some of these kids have been here for five or six hours — and they’re having a great time,” he said.
“I talked to one fella and he said this is fabulous and he never realized this sort of stuff went on.”
Felicia Cartier, who was sitting on the ice with her four-year-old son Kaden Coolidge, agreed.
“This is a great day, isn’t it Kaden?” she said, giving him a nudge. “We were more than excited to come out. I’ve always wondered what was going on when I drove by. You see little tents with people huddled around and now I get it.”
All of the equipment, hotdogs and hot chocolate were provided free. As well, members of sports clubs from throughout the region volunteered their time to help.
Organizers hope to make this an annual event.