In and around Golden there are many beautiful rivers and lakes which fishermen from far and wide journey to for many different reasons.
Local angler John Shapperd Sr. took some time to share his view on some of the best places to go and what to do once you get there.
Shapperd has lived in Golden for 29 years and is well know for his knowledge of local fishing holes.
He tries to go fishing at least once a week and believes the area has something for all types of fishermen.
Shapperd explained the lake fishing is quite good, with many of the smaller lakes only needing smaller boats, while much of the river fishing has been good in the fall or the spring as well.
“In the Columbia River it could be bull or rainbow trout and some of them are very large,” he said. One are ahe recommends to people who do not have a boat are the Black Water Lakes which are about one hour west of Golden.
He explained that the first lake in that area has a small dock so families can fish quite easily from it.
For the more adventurous anglers Shapperd said to go to Gorman Lake, which will take almost an hour to hike to.
“You are in there and can fish for rainbows all around the lake. There are also picnic tables up there,” he said.
Shapperd also recommended Cedar Lake as another place where fish can be found.
He added that people who are coming to fish in the area should be careful which lakes they are fishing in because there are a number of “Trophy Lakes” around Golden.
“They are not strictly fly fishing though most people do fly fish them. They are single barbless hook, no bait and if you are going to retain a fish it is only one over 50 centimetres.”
In the three weeks of fishing leading up to the interview Shapperd said he and his friend were the only people on the lakes fishing at the times they were out.
“It is quite beautiful but people must respect that this is one of the best places on earth,” Shapperd said.
He explained that people have to be prepared to carry out whatever they carry in to the lakes while also being very careful with any fires they may start.
“It is not just the fishing. It is appreciating what you see whether it is the wildlife, flowers, the weather. It is everything,” he said. “Pack it in, pack it out.”
Another point Shapperd shared was his theory of, “Limit your catch, don’t catch you limit.” He feels it is important to only take fish that are larger, and give the smaller fish a chance to grow. Shapperd releases 99.9 per cent of the fish he catches only taking the occasional one home.
In the end the Shapperd shared this view on the area.
“After 29 years I still love the area. It is beautiful and you have so many choices. There are huge amounts of resources in this area. They are all very enjoyable with great opportunities,” he said.
In Golden you can pick up a fishing license online, at the court house or at Home Hardware.