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Friday August 18th 2017

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Fishing Trip

Peter Molenaar

by Peter Molenaar

It is good for an inland worker to visit big water from time to time.  My father and I are just now returned from fishing Lake of the Woods in northernmost Minnesota.  The curvature of the horizon is discernable to the eye there.  So, thank you Smith Foundry for letting me go.

As I was not pressed to engage the machine, the promising sunrise then lingered.  The inlet bay of our camp offered a calm cold mist among the green cattails.  But the big water answered with wind and waves.

Several flotillas of cabin cruisers located the walleye far from shore.  But we with our smallish boat opted to troll the shoreline for northern pike or maybe a musky.  We had paid a high price for a day’s worth of frustration when, wop, “FISH ON!” I shouted.  It made one glorious straight up leap– “YEOW!  It’s a bass!”

Such an extraordinarily handsome specimen of a smallmouth bass it was.  I gently removed the hooks all the while apologizing and wondering if the notion of Karma were true.  But, ego prevailed.  Our bass was brought to shore to be weighed (4.3 lbs!), photographed, displayed among the humanoids, and consumed.

Yet my unsettled conscience was to receive another blow.  During the return trip, Minnesota Fishing Regulations 20l1 revealed that smallmouth bass taken after September 12 are to be catch and release only.  Had I known…

So, the question remains:  Was the chauvinism manifested towards that beautiful fish of the same magnitude as that displayed by images of “great white fathers” carved upon sacred rocks in South Dakota?

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