2012-11-09 and 2012-11-10 Floating Villages of Cambodia

15 11 2012

We visited two floating villages while in Cambodia.  Kampong Pluk and Prek Toal.  The villages are located way out in the flooded plains of Tonle Sap Lake.  In the dry season, it’s not so far out, but now, at the end of the wet season – it’s a LONG way to land.  These villages are, for the most part, simply a conglomeration of houseboats with a few permanent structures such as the Buddhist temple.

Things work differently in a floating village.  The store comes to you.  There was a general store boat

and also boats that specialized in different foods. 

You don’t just run over to your friend’s house, you get in your boat and paddle over, you take the boat to school, and you basically live life in boats

When you live in a floating village, your main industry is, unsurprisingly, fishing.

Most importantly, if you don’t like your neighbours in your floating village, you just pull up anchor and move – HOUSE and all.

If you’d like to see more from these two floating villages, please visit the flickr sets at:


Thanks for taking time to visit!

Hatheume Lake is NOT a day trip from Vancouver!

2 07 2008

Yesterday, Canada Day, Myself and 3 friends decided to fish Hatheume Lake between Kelowna and Merrit.

We left Vancouver at 0330 after 2 hours sleep and didn’t get back until 2200.

I definitely think you need to classify that lake in the "weekend trip" category.

That being said, the lake was beautiful and the fishing was good for some people. (Not me).  Definitely on the re-visit list.  There are HUGE fish in this lake, and they are loving Chironomids right now.

Fishing restrictions:

HATHEUME LAKE  – No fishing Dec 1-Apr 30 Rainbow trout daily quota = 1; artificial fly only, bait ban, single barbless hook

I’m still wiped out after the trip.

Tight lines!

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North Vancouver First Nation – Giving up Sockeye for the year

17 08 2007

The Tsleil-Waututh First Nation in North Vancouver has said “Enough is enough”.  Chief Leah George-Wilson of this Coast Salish First nation with a population of 450 has stated that they will not be taking their allotment of sockeye from the Fraser river this year in order to help the dismal run have some chance of success. 


While we continue to hear about some Native groups continuing to net the decimated sockeye stocks, these people have taken a public stand to “Do the Right Thing” and say “No”.

While admittedly they weren’t exactly entitled to 20,000 fish or anything near that, EVERY single fish that makes it to the spawning grounds will make a difference.  Other Native bands have harvested over 35,000 sockeye from the river already.

You can read more about it in the Vancouver Sun, where I first came across the article:


Oh, did I mention…. Thank You!

For those wishing to express their thanks directly, you can email the chief and the band council at:  reception AT twnation.ca

Letter to the Editor – Chilliwack Progress

11 08 2007

The Chilliwack Progress, a small local newspaper in Chilliwack BC, published a story titled “Anglers Take on Ethics“.

The story is sorely lacking in true fact finding, or in depth coverage that is the hallmark of good journalism.  I sent a letter to the editor of the paper, as well as its author, Jennifer Feinberg, expressing my dismay with the tabloid style of poor journalism expressed in the article.  I  would have appreciated an acknowledgement at the least.  Well, even though THEY didn’t publish my letter to the editor, the nice thing about the modern media is that it isn’t concentrated in the power of the few.  Blogs allow us all to be our own editors and publishers and as such here is my letter to the editor of the Chilliwack Progress and Ms. Feinberg:


I have just recently read your article “Anglers take on Ethics, August 7, 2007”
I’m not going to address your entire article, but I’d like to start by clearing up a few misconceptions:
“Concern in the local angling community…”
Should read “Concern among some in the local angling community” as a large number or local anglers are NOT concerned.
“…fishing practice known as flossing, snagging, or bottom bouncing.”
Should read “…fishing practice known as ‘flossing’ which is a variation on a technique called  ‘bottom bouncing’ and is often referred to by some as ‘snagging’
“…it’s considered unethical and unsportsmanlike…”
Should read “… the concerned groups considers it unethical or unsportsmanlike…” as, once again, many do not consider it to be unethical or unsportsmanlike.

I hope you can see where I’m going with this (and that I won’t need to continue any further).  There is a vocal portion of the fishing community that feel that this is wrong, even though FOC has not issued any violation orders in this regard during the numerous times that they have been at the sites of this “floss fishery”.  Ethics, of course, is an individual and communal issue, but fishing regulations, as posted are enforced by FOC for salmon and Provincial CO’s for other freshwater fish.  It is important that people are able to debate the merits of differing fishing techniques. There is a LONG running debate between the flyfishing community and the “gear” fishing community about ethics, as there is between the barbed and barbless hook users. It’s human nature.


The rules clearly say that any fish willfully or accidentally snagged must be released immediately. 

“Quite a few people know they’re snagging the fish. The regulations that say it’s against the law to snag or foul hook the fish, or attempt to do so, but (to enforce it) a fisheries officer would have to catch them in the act of killing the fish.”

The rules actually state:


It is illegal to: 

  • fish for finfish and/or shellfish without a licence.
  • catch and retain salmon if your licence does not have a valid salmon
    conservation stamp attached to it.
  • wilfully foul hook or attempt to foul hook any fish other than herring,
    northern anchovy, Pacific sand lance and squid.

So, we need a definition of “foul hook”.  Pleasantly the freshwater fishing regulations, put out by the province have that definition:


snagging (foul hooking)? hooking a fish in any other part of its body than the mouth. Attempting to snag fish of any species is prohibited. Any fish willfully or accidently snagged must be released immediately.
(emphasis mine)
The group within the recreational sector, of which you have chose to interview one individual, feels that even though 1) the rules ALLOW it, and  2) there is no action taken against individuals fishing in this manner while in the presence of FOC officers, that this style of fishing is illegal as quoted by you.  I don’t know if you gathered more information, but it certainly seems that were simply taking this one individual’s statement as fact – an incorrect fact.
This debate has torn many members of the fishing community apart and publishing a one sided opinion piece without gathering more evidence than talking to one fisherman is irresponsible journalism at best, helping to divide the recreational fishing sector (notice I didn’t use “sportfishing”) even further, and serving no purpose other than filling space in a newspaper.  On the positive side, at least now you’ll be able to go out some time and gather the REST of the opinions from a wider population of fishermen and fill more of that newspaper.
While I am not in your normal reader catchment (located in the Lower Mainland not the valley) I hope that you will take my concerns seriously and not lower to the standards of supermarket tabloids in an attempt to be shocking and gain attention.
p.s. while we’re at it – Would you please refrain from calling it “Sportfishing”, since the government classifies it as “Recreational fishing”.  If there’s a sport between a human and a fish (implying competion on an even ground), then we’re really lowering humans 😉
Brian P. Hampson

Football, Fish and a Wedding – Busy weekend

9 07 2007

On Friday I went to the home opener of the BC Lions.  I have season tickets thanks to the good folks at the Team 1040 radio station.  We whooped Edmonton’s butts 29-9.  It was a fun time.  My friend let me park in his visitor parking while we were at the game, and when we returned to get our vehicle, there was lots of water, firemen and a fire alarm…  we drove out quickly.  Dunno what happened, but my friend said apparently it wasn’t anything that he needed to deal with.  Odd.

Saturday morning I got up bright and early (0630) to head out to Richmond.  It was “Fish for the Future” Day!  I met up with the organizer at about 0750 and we loaded my truck and another full of all the canopies and equipment for the day.

Once down at London Landing (end of Number 2 road) in Steveston more volunteers had arrived, so we all started unpacking and setting up.  We transformed a pretty quiet little pier into a bustling area of display booths and activity stations.  There was a family of swans with their little cygnets floating around the dock area.  They stuck around long enough to allow me to get a few good pictures.  By the start time of 1000 we had the fishing rods set up, the flytying and fly casting station ready, the Freshwater Fisheries society. BC Hydro, Seymour salmonid society and O.W.L all in action.  I moved down to my usual location – down on the floating dock with my buckets and worms.  We were ready.

The wind was light and the sun was strong.  I was glad I had my SPF45 sunblock on.  Kids started streaming down the gangplank to the dock and we were crazy busy getting worms on hooks and helping them get their lines in the water.  Worm after worm, line tangle after line tangle, we eventually had a constant rotation of approximately 25 kids fishing at any given time.  It wasn’t too long before our first fish of the day; a peamouth chub.  The tide was high, and on a slow ebb so the fishing wasn’t exactly fast and furious, but we did bring in some bullheads, peamouth chub, whitefish, northern pikeminnows and a big large scaled sucker!  We kept an aquarium up on the pier where people could see the fish and learn more about them.

I made a small break for myself this time, as I was determined not to miss the opportunity to photograph the birds of prey that they had on display (I had missed this the past 2 years – too busy).  I ended up with what I consider to be one of my best bird shots to date:

Barn Owl – Original Size Here (great detail)

You can see the little western screech owl they had also at: http://www.fotothing.com/DragonSpeed/photo/fabf0931d3fa753d8cdf6e9c797428db/ 
They were very beautiful birds.

We finished fishing and displaying at 1500, and then after unloading all the stuff back at the organizer’s home I headed back to my place and barely managed to make it without falling asleep. I was exhausted.  I walked in the door and slept until 2230!

With the weekend only half over there was still a Sunday of activity to go.  We woke up a bit late on Sunday morning, but we made up for that by having a quick brunch at home and then it was go-go-go!   One of Mrs D’s cousins’ daughter was being married and we were invited for the reception.  Since the dry cleaner had lost my shirt back in December I now had a dress shirt count of “0”.  We had to head out to the Bay to find a shirt.  After that, it was over to a friend who moved out of our complex and was having his housewarming party.  We had a great visit, and had a chance to see some of his pictures from his trip to Antarctica that he had taken.  Great stuff!  After visting and chatting until 1545 we headed home and caught the end of a couple of open houses.  Always a good opportunity to look around and get some design ideas.

Our neighbor dropped by and we chatted for a while. Always nice to get caught up, as we all seem to live such busy lives.

We left home at 1745 to get to Richmond for the wedding reception and made it nicely for 1830.  By a funny coincidence, one of the couples sitting at the table with us was at the “Fish for the Future” event on Saturday.  Small world 🙂  It was a great reception and the bride looked lovely in a cream coloured gown.  We ate the usual chinese multicourse meal and felt like you could roll us home when we were all done.  Finally we got home on Sunday night at around 2330, and it was time to pass out and get ready for work on Monday.  Crazy, but fun weekend.

Fish for the Future – This Saturday!

6 07 2007

It’s coming… Tomorrow.

Have you wanted to teach your kids how to fish but don’t necessarily know how to fish yourself?  Want your children to lose that “XBox flab”?

I’ve been volunteering for the past few years at this event.  It’s great!

Fish for the Future 2007 from 10:00am to 3:00pm on Saturday July 7th.
The festival will take place at the No. 2 Road Pier (London’s Landing) in Steveston. This will be the fifth annual event and there are some exciting new additions that all can look forward to.

With the support of the BC Family Fishing Weekend and National Fishing Week, this is a community event hosted in Steveston. A variety of activities usually take place during the event. The event is FREE, kids who do not have a fishing rod can borrow one during the event. The whole purpose of the event is to promote family fishing, as well as bringing awareness of various environment issues to the general public.

Please note that parking is limited so it is best to car-pool or cycle to the event. Juvenile tidal fishing licenses will be available to those who are under the age of 16 and they are free. For adult tidal license, please visit Berry’s Bait and Tackle. Limited amount of bait will also be supplied. Food is not available on site. The closest place is a cafe on No. 2 Road just north of the pier. Drinks (pop and water) will be available on site.

This year’s exhibitors will include:

BC Hydro PowerSmart – “Turn it off!”
Burns Bog Conservation Society – Bog and Game Booth
Chilliwack/Vedder River Cleanup Coalition
Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC – Mini Fishing Lessons
Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society – Birds of Prey
Seymour Salmonid Society – Salmon Education

Ongoing activities during the event will include:

Arts and crafts
Fish species station
Fishing for Tidal Fraser River fish
Fly tying workshops
Flycasting clinics
River fishing clinics

In a nutshell:  A GREAT time for kids and their parents.  We’ve even had “older” adults ask about how to get into fishing.  We help people learn the basics of river resource stewardship, starting with the simple act of handling fish carefully after catching them.  Lots of demonstrations.  The birds of prey are cool!

Annual Fishing Trip to MooseCamp

5 06 2007

Last weekend it was time for the annual “First Weekend in June trip to MooseCamp Resort” on Rioux lake.

The weather was hot (over 30C!) and the fishing was good. We left Vancouver at 0100 on Thursday night and didn’t get home until 2000 on Sunday.

During the time we were there, we caught literally hundreds of fish between the 9 of us, and kept a few nice silvery 14″+ rainbow trout. The evening surface fly fishing was great on Saturday.

We were entertained by Loons, Eagles and Osprey. We heard a moose nearby and we saw black bears when we were on the road to and from the resort. It was an awesome time. I’ve posted up some pictures of the trip over at my photo gallery.

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