In 16th century Europe, it was common to offer a gift to family and friends on New Year’s Day. Until 1564, the New Year began on April 1st. Some believe that when the New Year was moved to January 1st, it became a gesture of defiance to offer a fish on April 1st since fishing was not allowed at that time due to it marking the beginning of the spawning season.
Fast forward to modern-day April Fools Day, the day of days for pranksters and one when a fine line may be crossed at any moment. Pranks are fun, to a point. A very funny joke can, indeed, turn into an insult or emotional trigger, depending on the recipient.
Being a fool requires mastery of self-composure; being a prankster requires a sense of decorum. Fishing requires both.
Fishing is often referred to as “one of man’s oldest pastimes” and fishing is in a state of renaissance. The true fisherman is not a prankster. The true fisherman is a student of nature and a student of movement, patience and perseverance.
Vermont streams, lakes and rivers offer opportunities for relaxation, artistic expression, contemplation and the practice of the art of fishing. Fishing is a flourishing art in Vermont, one that is grounded in decorum and concrete efforts toward sustainability and humane practices. We often forget how significant it is to know the source of our food. Fishing is more than an outdoorsman’s game; it provides a source of food whose safety and management we can affect because it exists in our own neighborhood.
There are so many resources in this area, for anyone wishing to become familiar with the local fishing industry, or to develop their fishing skills into an art. As with other arts, the goal is not the final product; the goal is the process. Fishing is a solitary and silent art, but one that is most enjoyable if it has been learned at the side of a true master, one who can show you the secrets of the trade and take you to venues you might not discover on your own.
The Go Stowe Team says it best:
“One day you can be working the upper tributaries of the Lamoille River and a day later casting from a float tube onto Sterling Pond located at the very top of Smuggler’s Notch. You might be fishing on Wolcott Pond or from Lake Eden but no matter where you go, you will enjoy being there. Savor the experience of drifting serenely along the edge of a pristine pond located almost 4000′ above sea level. After all, there’s more to fishing than just catching fish.”