Legal Question

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Stan Wright, Mar 30, 2013.

  1. Stan Wright Member

    Posts: 152
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Ratings: +21 / 0
    What is "Fishing"? And what is "Practice Casting" ?
    What would the Game Warden say if he walked up and ask for your fishing license... and you said: "I'm not fishing, I'm practice casting".
    Let's say you had NO Flys, or Hooks of any kind on you... Just a piece of yarn tied to the end of your leader.
  2. troutdopemagic Active Member

    Posts: 406
    Lake Stevens, Washington
    Ratings: +134 / 0
    I would say you'd be good to go. Your not technically fishing. You have just as much of a right to use a closed river for recreation as do kayakers, rafters, and drunken tubers. If he was a real hardass, I suppose he could get after you for "harassing the fish" and check you up and down to see if you had any hook/flies.
  3. Peyton00 Active Member

    Posts: 710
    Puyallup, Wa.
    Ratings: +290 / 0
    Thats it! bingo.
  4. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 3,994
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,563 / 0
    Most likely an officer would watch you from afar at first and see if you hooked anything. I doubt if they'd give you a citation if you had no form of hook on your line but they would still find it odd that you were practicing your casting on a closed river. How do they know you wouldn't attach a fly after they were gone?

    Personally, I'd find another place to practice my casting just to avoid any confrontations.
  5. Chris Johnson Member: Native Fish Society

    Posts: 1,787
    Bellingham Wa.
    Ratings: +316 / 1

    I have a friend who recieved a ticket for harrassing wildlife, he moved some oysters so he could find them later.
  6. freestoneangler Not to be confused with Freestone

    Posts: 3,975
    Edgewood, WA
    Ratings: +706 / 1
    I'd call the WDFW and ask... have heard that can be construed as "in the act of fishing" which, as you may know, John Gierach defines as "standing in a river waving a stick" ;)
  7. Steve Saville Active Member

    Posts: 2,482
    Tacoma, WA
    Ratings: +312 / 1
    I have heard that you can call ahead and letbthe WFDW know you are going to be practicing on a specific piece of water. I believe Aaron calls every week to let them know the Day On the River group will be practicing on Saturdays.
  8. teedub Active Member

    Posts: 361
    Cle Elum
    Ratings: +98 / 0
    If the Officer watched from afar waiting for me to hook something (assuming a fly is attached) he might need backup most days.
  9. Jerry Daschofsky Moderator

    Posts: 7,717
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +659 / 5
    Call ahead and let the WDFW know where you'll be casting. That way they can have it on file in case anyone calls.

    I've done this and never had a problem. When I was practicing my spey I would do the above. Especially since my cabin on the Wynoochee is on river and practice run is viewable from road.

    BTW on weekends I used to have to call WSP since they handled calls on the weekend.
  10. miyawaki Active Member

    Posts: 3,213
    Kent, Washington, USA.
    Ratings: +839 / 1
    I've been asked, showed the yarn, chatted a bit and said, "Thanks for checking."

    Kent Lufkin likes this.
  11. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 3,994
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,563 / 0
    Be careful guys, I've caught fish when they've hit the leader to tippet knot and became entangled in the line. Just my luck, I'd be practicing my casting and end up catching a fish by mistake about the time the law arrived. :D
  12. WonkyWapiti Member

    Posts: 126
    Maple Valley, WA
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    Just to add my two cents to what others have stated, I would make sure that you do not have any actual flies on your person like stuck to your hat, etc which in a game officer's mind might discredit your version of events if you have easy access to them. Other than that, I think the others above have given some good advice.
  13. Jerry Daschofsky Moderator

    Posts: 7,717
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +659 / 5
    Yes that's true. I had no vest or any other gear. Just my rod, Reel, and yarn fly.
  14. jwg Active Member

    Posts: 537
    West Richland, WA
    Ratings: +104 / 0
    WA rules are poorly organized

    Freshwater rules say, under tackle, hook and line angling only.

    Angling is defined in Definitions, as Angling (Hook and Line Fishing) Fishing... With a line attached to a pole... Or a hand-operated line without a rod or reel.

    I had though fishing was explicitly defined but only found the above when I looked.

    But it seems clear that it involves both a line and a hook.

  15. Nooksack Mac Active Member

    Posts: 1,947
    Bellingham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +109 / 0
    A week ago, four of us had a practice session with spey rods. I had prepared the way by calling the regional WDFW office, identifying myself, my car, and our fishing club, notifying them that we'd be practicing at either Lake Whatcom or Nugent's Corner on the Nooksack River, both of which are closed and in public view. I assured them that we'd not have hooks, and invited them to check us out. The clerk said my msg. would be forwarded to the enforcement officers in this area. We'll probably be doing it again, so this advance notice, which can be easily renewed, paves the way.