Where it all started. The values learned long ago.
It would be around the age of 5 that my uncle Gilles took out fishing for the first time. We went out on Lake Mahon to fish bullheads.
I was amazed that it was possible to catch so many fish in a single afternoon out. I even caught a small round fish with incredible colors and patterns. It was a sun fish he told me.
Wow … !!!
Years went by, now 12 years old, just starting high school, I met with Michel Lacroix who was a fishing addict. I wasn’t long that a lasting friendship formed and still going 50 plus years later. Each day off was a reason to run outside and fish for whatever would bite on the Ottawa River whether it was from shore or out in his dad’s boat.
Hours upon hours of pure pleasure!!! Even if the fish would not bite much, we were out fishing and that was all that mattered and it was pure happiness. We would imagine all kind of scenarios...
Aged 16, the big moment happened for me.
The beginning of the first trip out to the La Vérendrye Reserve on the Gens de Terre with my uncle Gilles. Spending 3 to 4 days out camping and chasing after walleye and northern pike.
I had now to start learning more about that beautiful sport. So I started educating myself by watching TV shows like Fish'on on TV Ontario and then I understood everything. The importance of proper fish manipulation, techniques and selective harvest if I wanted to be able to enjoy this sport for as long as I wanted to and more importantly respecting the environment.
At 28 years old, I became a father and it was clear that I was going to try passing on the passion and knowledge to my son Pascal!!!
I started at an early age to have him watch fishing shows with me (It was our little bonding moment) and also teach him about the common species of fish that we encounter on the Ottawa River (Aylmer to Luskville section).
At first, I would make sure to fish sector with higher potential of catching something just so I could teach him the basics of fishing. He was about 3 years old when he caught his first good size fish, a smallmouth bass. All immortalized on video or course.
As years went by, I taught him the importance of respecting nature, camping sites and fishing spots, being selective with what was captured with propre manipulation and all the rules and regulations. We only keep what will really be consumed for meals. The respect of the aquatic fauna was also important. The importance of respecting and releasing bigger specimens back in the water having a direct impact on the future of the sport. They are the biggest progenitors.
Each year we would head out to Lac Larouche for walleye and northern pike in early June. Now that a few years went by, Pascal and I both head out with a partner since he now run his own boat. It adds a little challenge but it is mostly a moment to kick back and relax for us.
For a few years now, bass fishing as become a rendezvous for us. I do have to say, it is a fishing style that is a little bit more physically demanding.
All those moments, they generate memories that are priceless!!!
In conclusion, we both set out on a mission to introduce someone to fishing as often as possible. Today, my son Pascal, the one I taught everything I knew and shared the passion and love for the sport developed a great expertise for bass fishing. Now, he’s the Mentor that teaches me all the techniques and technologies that surrounds the world of bass fishing.
I am very proud to be able to witness that long road he traveled, the passion he’s got for the sport and the respect and values that are connected to it.