He then proceeded to yell profanities and other "nice" words at me, all while threatening to "beat my *##". I walked away, after saying, "Have a nice day, sir," downstream to my original destination where no other people could be seen fishing, anywhere.
These guys are out of their minds. They think they own the stream, and can therefore bully everyone away. I have use of a 3 man Creek Company pontoon, and from now on will probably only fish that area from the pontoon. Plus, they can keep their stupid pelletheads. I just wish more people would get involved and help the efforts to stop these people.
It's too bad you had to go through this, but you must not let them chase you away or make you fish in some other manner. They win if you do. You should of called the police, though we both know they are busy enough, for his harrassing you...We had a case here in Michigan a few years back where a couple folks out in canoes got in to it with each other and there was swearing etc and a family happened by in another canoe with children aboard and took the guy to court and he was fined.
I read Gonzo's link and we have had these sort of squabbles all over this country...One of the more famous was Ted Turner trying to turn the Ruby out west in to his own private stream and there were rumors that he was going to stock it with non-natives.
We have a stretch on the North Branch that is locally called the "Club Waters" because large tracks there belong to private hunting/fishing clubs that go way back...Unless you were familiar with the woods and not oppossed to trespass the only way to fish there really was to float down in a river boat or hike a good distance upstream.
Years back, especially on the weekends, these places would hire guys to "patrol" their stretches and hassle an angler if he ever tried to exit the stream. One of these places was/is called Nash Camp and I have a nice up close photo of their sign from the stream...All the "old-timers" when they see the picture ask if I got it floating by and I always give them my best little rascals grin and say no, I was standing in the stream ;)...
There's another place where a family owns both sides of the river and for years guys would sneek back to a meadow on the opposite side of their cottage with their cars. There is an island here with small wooden bridges so they can walk across...This spring I was fishing there and the woman that owns the place walked over the bridges and island and peeked out in to the meadow expecting to see my vehicle there...I was fishing up the channel along the island and near the bridge as she walked back across...I smiled at her because I knew what she was up to and she knew I knew...;) She was having a hard time figuring out how I made it in front of her place.
Anyway! I'm not supporting trespassing here I just got a little off track...There are always going to be hassles between folks who equate owning the property with somehow their having dominion over the stream...It somehow becomes theirs...This isn't England and we can see easily through this "club" owners Orwellian "double-speak"...He wants to be the only one to make any money there while he's exploiting something that really belongs to the citizens of PA.
The Anglers of the Au Sable was formed in 1987 basically because we couldn't get some other fishing groups to support catch-and-release on a section of the mainstream. This was a real hot-button issue at the time and it got a little out of control in some quarters. There was a restaurant owner in town who actually threatened to poison the stream if no-kill went through! He has long since been out-of-business.
In a favorite stretch that I have fished for a long time there was an old guy who had a cabin there that he claimed to have owned since the 30's. He basically thought that any "new" rules didn't apply to him personally...He was some how "grandfathered"...The "natural-rivers-act" designation didn't apply to him and he could do what he damn well pleased on his property whether or not it fell within the zone or not...He would rail at me how "those guys", by which he meant the Angler's of the Au Sable (I was wearing the club cap at the time)had ruined the river and it's never been the same since the no-kill went through...You know "Back in the good old days etc"...He would walk down the middle of the river, the "flies-only no-kill" section of the river with a spinning reel with some big old weighted jig attached at the end that he had attached some feathers to and called it a fly! If you said anything to him he would feign being deaf.
I know this isn't a "good" sentiment, but I haven't seen the old-fart in years and maybe if he has passed, wherever he ended up, I hope that the powers that be there have refused to let him fish...One of these days, in my fishing novel, you will be able to read about the morning he shot at me with a small pistol from his dock...I'm pretty sure that was when my beard started to go gray!
Matt...There are times, more often than not, that I'm not too fond of our fellow humans and their selfish ways...Thankfully I haven't gone "postal" or anything :).
Hang in there! Carpe Diem, brother! I think you PA Boys need to plan an en masse, uptream of the access point, visit to the pool in front of their club...Make sure you find a local supporting news guy to film it...Give him a pair of waders...Take those water proof chairs and have a good old fashioned sit down...Bring the rods, some refreshments, and pick a day when you know the "clients" are out there having their faked-up dream experience over hand fed stockies. It's a wonder they don't have lackeys upstream somewhere chumming the waters with fish pellets and the fly of the day!