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Josh Pearson
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just want everyone who pinches down their barbs to be aware. My dad on Saturday evening was ticketed on Rocky Ford for failing the "Velcro Test"
For those of us that had never heard of the "Velcro Test" let me tell you what CRAP it is. The DFW officer took my dad's fly and ran it backwards through the soft side of velcro, since it stuck in the velcro, it failed the test. Therefore his fly was deemed to have a barb. $75 short in the wallet we left the Ford.
The officer took my dad's fly and a leatherman to show the proper way to pinch a barb down. IT mangled the hook damn near unusable. For the record the barb had been pinched down with a pair of needle nose pliers before Howdy Doody came upon us.

Thanks DFW:reallymad

josh
 

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Wow, I have never heard of that test either? It sounds like enforcement needs some money. I could offer some advice on places he could visit to make an impact instead of harasssing pinched barbed, catch and release, fly-fisherman.

give me a break?

Mcronariver:eek :eek :eek :eek :eek
 

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Gee whiz, you'd think they would be more focused on all them snaggers and non-licensed folk I saw this year. That seems so trivial compared to them guys I saw using grappling hooks. Wrong place, wrong time I guess.

Matt

"Everyday that you wake up and decide not to go fishing...is one less day you'll go fishing." Forrest Maxwell
 

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Seriously? I agree with Mcronariver, ,WDFW really needs to re-evaluate where they focus there EXTREMELY limited resources...I have witnessed gear slingers chucking treble hooks at chinook salmon while standing 20 ft upstream from the hwy 99 bridge on the Samish river, an area that is not only closed to fishing for salmon, but closed to ALL fishing. These blatant poachers always seem to get away with it while your c&r dad is ticketed for not meeting WDFW's degree of barblessness. Makes you want to do this :beathead....
 

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Mother Nature's Son
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I'd check the regs. If this test isn't printed, it doesn't exist and I would fight it in court. It won't cost you anything, you would just have to appear in court and talk to a judge.

If you had not attempted to push the barb down then I could understand why you got the ticket. As mentioned above, it would seem that the officer's time could be better spent on more flagrant violations.

Skinny
 

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I totally agree with Skinny, your Dad should fight this ticket as hard as possible. What that officer did and his attitude is about as bogus as it gets.

Skinny's point on the "velcro test" being either in writing or not is a very good point. This should be fought on principle if nothing else.

Mark
 

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Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!
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The trouble is that the intention of barbless regulations is to prevent hook barbs from damaging the mouths, tissues etc.,of the fish. And just crushing a barb won't always eliminate a sharp residual edge at the back of the crushed barb.By the leter and intention of the law, literally speaking, the officer probably has a case.In practise and use I think the officer's actions stank of an "easy pinch". The only good thing about this is that the story will get around about how unreasonable they are up there on the Rocky Ford, and everyone will be a little more careful about their barbs.In a place like that, or say the San Juan,in New mexico, where the fish are caught frequently throughout their lives, less harm is a good thing.Personally, I think the officer would get better mileage out of being more civilized and encouraging about the issue.I do think you should fight it on principal in court.maybe the officer will collect overtime on that.But you should get a chance to rebutt this.Just my personal opinion.Of Note: there are a pair of pliars out there that are hard to find, Brownell's catalog used to sell them. They are parallel grip pliars and crush barbs perfectly on one squeeze without leaving a sharp back edge.Jewelers use them too.
 
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The experience your dad had on Rocky Ford is typical of the current DFW mentality that appears to be "revenue no matter how". I received an equally bogus ticket this summer on a remote Eastern Washington lake. The issuing officer had been given a badge, a gun, a bulletproof vest and a huge new 4wd rig to go out and protect our dwindling resouses with but they had not provided him with an ounce of good judgement or common sense. He ticketed an elderly man fishing alone on a little used lake who was catching and releasing trout on barbless flies. Still, he found a technicality to book me on when in reality he should have just checked my license and told me to have a nice day. The judge dismissed his "infraction fantasy' but I still got a subpeona, had to appear in court for arraignment and had to deal with the stress and trauma of driving 100 miles round trip to court. For years I had enjoyed good will with DFG officers, always visiting with them and exchanging information and ideas. Since I have never broken any game laws and have fished C&R for almost 25 years I never felt that I had anything to fear from those guys. Today I know better. If I see one in the area I simply pack up and leave now-kinda like when a mad dog is nearby and you just want to play it safe. Those guys have fouled their own nest. Those of us that fish and fish legally are their greatest resource yet they are systamatically alienating many of us with their ill-advised citations. Ive
 
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This officers sounds like he was a jerk to you, but personnally i think that it is good to hear of any officers out and about. having lived in ephrata the last 6 years, and fishing the ford between 75-100 days a year, i have never seen anyone from fish and game down there. I have watched nuumerous people down chucking gear, right in the middle of the day, with no game officers around to do anything.
 

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Josh Pearson
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Does anyone on this site work for DFW? I would like to know how one constitutes a barb test. I have heard of the shirt test, now I have first hand experience with the velcro test, is there any other test we are forgetting?

Realistically the ticket will just be paid. By the time a day of work is taken off and a day of travel from Gig Harbor to Eastern Wa to resolve this. You loose money hands down, even if it is thrown out.

In the last ten years I have been checked by 2 Dfw officers. both were within this years license period. The first time was down at the Purdy spit when the Kings were coming through. He was a great guy to talk to and did a quick license check and barb check and was on his way. Matter of fact, I was chest deep in the water when he said he needed to check my license. I said to him "Well then come on out, the water is fine". He just started to laugh. Of course I headed in to shore.

I am very appreciate of seeing the officers at the waters I fish. I would rather see these guys more often, than not see them at all. I have seen to many idiots fishing illegally to know that we can not monitor the waters we fish by ourselves.
We do need their help, but on the flip side getting technical on a velcro barb test is a little overboard. From here on out, I guess I learned to be changing flies when they appear.
 

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Don't be so hasty to jump all over the DFW's back! I'd bet that, with some sort of census of all members, you'd find that the number of positive interactions largely outnumber the number of negative interactions. I agree that the guys with his less-than-scientific barb test sounds like a 100% dick. But he made a poor choice and wasn't exactly professional and reasonable. I doubt that'd fetch an agency-wide agreement. This is exactly why you should fight the ticket on principle and do some fishing while you're out there. Just remember, there are loads of us who work for agencies such as the WDFW, Park Service etc. who deal with enforcement and other issues and are also frustrated with the way things work and the fact that a legitimate guy gets hassled by a warden while a family of migrant workers hauls out 35 lbs of trout from Nunnaly using worms and line wound around aluminum cans.
 

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This fall while fishing the Plumb's Landing pool on the Snoqualmie, I had a rather pleasant interaction with a DFW warden. This officer approached me about not having a proper permit displayed for parking in the WDFW lot. I confessed that I didn't have one and explained that I had lost it recently. He very politely gave me a warning, checked my license and, surprisingly, my fly for a barbed hook. The barb check was visual, he did not run through cloth or velcro. He wished me luck and was on his way. Quite impressed with how reasonable and professional this guy was, I bought another parking permit that night on the way home. After all, he could have easily slapped me with a minor ticket and I would have had no room to complain.

-Crock
 

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If they ended the barbless hook requirement tomorrow, I would still use them because I am almost certain that they hold fish better. They certainly make the release easier and quicker.
A game cop several years ago told me about his shirt test.
He said he would stick an angler's fly in his shirt (just above his pocket) and see if it came right out. If it stuck, then it was ticky ticky time.
You might try this test at home using an old shirt and see whether you can pass the shirt test.
I've been thinking about filing down the barb with a rasp just so I can forget about this s---, and get on with the business of having fun.
I think wardens should be held accountable for their actions. What did they do last week? How many citations were issued and for what? How many calls were received and responded to? What should citizens be looking out for and using a cell phone to report?
Construct a website and fill in the data. Allow for Q and A so that sportsmen will know what to expect.
Can they help with rules and regs.?
If not, why not?

P.S. For what it's worth, I have always supported and admired game wardens, but things seem to be changing.
Rather than setting an example by good and informative relations, they seem (some, but not all, of course) to be on this petty trip that greatly endangers their image and is very damaging to the department's purpose.
Why is this so?
Who is behind this?
What can we do?
BOBLAWLESS :dunno
 

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Just an Old Man
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The thrill is not in the kill---But to let them go.

I for one always perform the shirt test when I'm tying flies. I just got in the habit of doing it and when I buy them and pinch them down I do the Shirt thing again. All in habit. You never know when one is going to watch you thru binoculars. That happened to me and a buddy on Quincy lake one time. We had our camp set up and we were being slobs. Well unknown to us we were being watched by him from the other end of the lake. Got a $10.00 ticket for being a litter bug. I dropped a pop can in our camp site and got a ticket for it. I could see if I was going to leave it but I picked it up before he came and I still got a ticket.I paid it but got a lesson from it.

Jim
 

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<edited>

I dont know how many of you guys read posts over there, (I know a few of you do)but it sure makes me glad that I call this site "home".

<edit> Thanks GG. I won't, though, support bashing other boards at any level. It is a good read, but lets keep the responses focused on this site. Thanks. Chris.
 

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Sparkey actually wasn't proposing a bait ban on winter steelhead... he said it might be worth closing waters to bait from June 1 through the fall to protect juvenille wild steelhead. :rolleyes

And as a dual resident of the two boards, IMO, there are good and bad elements of both. Bob's (www.piscatorialpursuits.com) is definitely more my home site, but I love reading all the stories over here from all you facinating characters. Don't playa hate!!
:professor :p
 

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I do not think fisherman/women here are getting aggro or anything, but what it comes down to is fairness. Most of the guys in enforcement like to talk to the fisherman and retain a working relationship with them.

I am friends with some of the enforcement guys on the coast and in EWA and they usually target serious offenders, they have been known to board boats in the salt to check barbs but I have never heard of the so called "velcro test."

I do agree though, it is good to hear they are out and looking for people who are not respecting the fishing regulations.

The problem is: don't screw the people on you your own boat--we are all trying to help, in whatever small way we know how.

Mcronariver
 

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I would write a letter to the Ephrata newspaper, Chamber of Commerce, Mayor's Office and City Council, County Coucil (I think the county has a tourism board too to complain about this officer. It is a small town and I am sure everyone knows this guy. Explain in the letter what happened (how your dad had crushed the bard of the hook down and thought it was with in the law) and also tell them how much money you have spent in the town in the last few years.

It sounds like this guy was being a little over zealous in writing your dad up. There are so many other gross infractions that go un-checked. The last thing the town wants in an overzealous "Barney Fife" type cop who starts to scare away law abiding fisherman who put a lot of money into the local economy.

For example I have made two weekend trips with two other anglers to Rocky Ford in the last 12 months. Both times we stayed at the local travel lodge motel, ate at local restaurants, bought gas, and bought lunch food at the local super market. In total I would guess we spent about $200-300 each trip. My business alone won't make or break the town but when you multiply that by the number of anglers that vist the Ford each year it probably adds up to at least a million in extra revenue for a town that really needs the money.

Your complaint will not fall on deaf ears and will likely get back to the officer. It may not be worth fighting the ticket as you'll spend more in time an gas to go to court.

A friend of mine (who is a prominent local FF'er) did this when the WDFW voted against wild steelhead release last year. He called up the chamber of commerce in Forks to complain about a member of the WDFW commitee that lives and works in that area and who voted against wild steelhead release. My friends complaint was based on the WDFW persons vote and how it could affect the local economy. My friend broke down gis annual spending in Forks and even provided the name of a local business person who was willing to vouch for how my friend and his fishing buddies level of spending in his own business. The person at the Forks chamber got back to my friend with a very positive response. I am not sure what happened after that but it illustrates how talking with the right people in local government can work.

A guy did this on another site a while ago when all his gear was confiscated by Warm Springs tribal police on the Deschuttes. He was a very squeaky wheel and mangaged to get an appology and all his gear back.

Good luck!
 

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Below was emailed to me today in response to my question what was legal here:

Dear Mr. Zaretzka:

Thank you for your e-mail correspondence to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Fish Program. Evan Jacoby in our Legal Services has prepared the following response for you:

Thank you for your communication regarding barbless hooks. If the individual who was ticketed had truly pinched down the barb on his fly hook, he should have contested the ticket, not simply paid the $75 fine for the infraction (the rule says, "pinched down" not "pinched down enough"). It may have been easier to just pay the money and complain, but he had a right to a hearing. Generally, it is relatively easy to see if a fisher has pinched down a 1/0 or 4/0 salmon hook, but it is a different matter for a #14 or #18 fly hook (Rocky Ford Creek being a fly-only watershed). I suppose a person could be absolutely sure that the hook complied by filing off the barb, but I have never heard that pinching down a barb rendered a hook "damn near unusable." I am not aware of the "velcro test", but now that you have heard of it, it would be advisable to see your fly hooks do not fail the test.

Sincerely,
Evan Jacoby, Counsel
(360) 902-2930

If you have further questions, please email again or call (360) 902-2700. Our Customer Service hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Sincerely,
Fish Program

>>> "Albert G. Zaretzka" <[email protected]> 01/13/03 10:34PM >>>
BARBLESS

Read the following, and then read the rules guide you publish. Under definitions (page ),. under Hook, Barbless is defined as "A hook from which all barbs have been deleted when manufactured, filed off, or pinched down." Noting the last phrase "or pinched down", how does that published definition correspond with the below? Are there other regulations specifying what are the "legal" tests for barbless hooks? or are agents allowed there own discretion??

I don't want to break the law, nor do I want to be hassled. Thanks in advance for clearing this up; perhaps you could post on the forum below as well.
 
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