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Fishing Etiquette & Stream Rules

Madeline's 1st Trout!Rockwell Springs Trout Club is and shall remain a respite for its members through the use and preservation of its resources exclusively for the relaxation and enjoyment of the trout fly-fisher, from novice to expert, and his or her family and guests.

The rules below  are intended to insure that everyone has the best possible opportunity to relax and enjoy the Club's most unique and important resource - our stream. The Club's Board of Directors has no desire to limit anyone's enjoyment of the stream beyond that point where it infringes on another fly-fisher's relaxation or enjoyment. Fly fishing at its best is a rather solitary endeavor. Unfortunately our resource is limited in size, so often fishing at Rockwell Springs is not as solitary as we might prefer. These rules are an attempt to help all of us fit into the space that we have while preserving the solitary nature of our sport.

Please help us in our efforts to insure the fishing enjoyment of all by observing the rule and etiquette of our Club.

Sportsmanship on the Stream

Be aware of other fly-fishers and Club employees along the stream. Allow a safe and courteous distance, 50 feet in pool areas and 100 feet in stream areas, between all those present on or near the stream.

Never cut in ahead of someone who is fishing a section of stream, and never cast to the same fish or group of fish to which another fly-fisher is casting.

Be aware of back casts. There is a sharp hook attached to the end of every fly line. They are intended for the fish, not other fly-fishers. Alwasy announce yourself as you pass through an area where another fly-fisher's backcast might come near you. 

Keep the Club beautiful. Carry any trash off the stream to receptacles.

Stream Rules

All guests and first-time participants must watch the fishing video before fishing. Bartenders will set the video up for you.

Fly-fishers must make an honest effort to land every fish that is hooked. Only those fly-fishers registered for "Catch & Release" fishing and displaying a green badge may release fish. All fish that are not released are to be promptly killed and either placed in a creel or taken to the fish cleaning area. Fish are never to be left lying on the ground. 

All fly-fishers must have a net or landing glove with them at all times. One of these methods must be used to land ALL fish. No fish is ever to be dragged from the water onto the bank or lifted onto the bank dangling from a hook. 

Catch and release guests are required to be accompanied by a catch and release fishing member when fishing the area north of Vickery Road (Grinton's Gulch and Sadler's Meadow), and a member may take NO MORE than three (3) guests at one time to the area north of Vickery Road.

Only members and their registered family members and guests, who are actively fishing, are permitted in the fishing area. Everyone is required to wear a Club issued badge while fishing. 

Pets are not permitted in the fishing area. 

Only fly rods, equipped with a fly reel and a fly line are allowed. Lures incorporating spinners or other "hardware" (ie. treble hooks or live bait), of any kind are not permitted.

Observe and obey signs that are posted along the stream.

All kept fish are to be processed by Rockwell Springs personnel.

Children on the Stream

Children must wear eye protection while in the fishing area. The Club will have some safety glasses that can be borrowed, if you do not have a pair. 

Parents or hosts are responsible for their children's behaviour and safety.

Children under eight years old may only fish in the Wilson Pool and must be closely supervised by an adult who is registered to fish. 

Children eight years old to fourteen years old may fish throughout the fishing area if accompanied by a registered fishing adult or unsupervised at the Wilson Pool.

A non-fishing child may accompany an adult fly-fisher in the fishing area, provided the child remains with the adult and is under close supervision.

Parents or hosts who feel their children are able to fish without supervision should discuss the possibility with the Club Manager.

Catch & Release Fishing

Catch and release fishing is available when either a daily or annual Catch & Release Fee has been paid. It is the Club's intent to provide this option to fly-fishers who are competent to release fish. If you are a beginner, please do not sign up to release fish until you gain some experience.

Members, their family members and their guests may release fish only if properly registered with the Club and only when displaying a green fishing badge, indicating the appropriate "Catch & Release" fee has been paid.

Only fish caught on barbless hooks may be released (this includes hooks on which the barb has been pinched down). Any fish caught on a hook that has a functioning barb must be kept. 

The area North of Vickery Road is catch and release fishing only. Only members and guests with catch and release privileges may fish there.

Catch and release fly-fishers must respect the Club's investment in fish stock. You are expected to harvest any fish that has been hurt or is damaged. Fish bleeding at the gills or mishandled will not survive and must be kept. 

Any fish that you want to release must be properly handled. The following guidelines should always be followed: 
  • Thoroughly wet your hands before touching the fish.

  • Never squeeze the fish's abdomen, hold it gently but firmly high on the back just behind the head and never touch it's gills.

  • Do not play the fish to exhaustion, get it to the bank and remove the hook as quickly as possible.

  • If the fish is lethargic, revive it (preferably in a net) before releasing it.

  • If the fish is damaged in any way, keep it.

Stream Safety

We recommend every fly-fisher wear glasses for eye protection, especially polarized sunglasses which help you better see the fish.

Watch your footing when landing, netting and if applicable, releasing fish. The stream banks can be very slippery.

Please be mindful of the weather, if it appears threatening, head for cover immediately. If you get caught in a storm, remove the lightning rod from your hands. Place your rod against a tree or on the ground and retrieve it after the storm passes. 

Shirts must be worn at all times. 

Wildside Parking

The Oxbow Lodge parking area is only for guests staying at the Oxbow Lodge. Fly-fishers are to use either the Northwest Road or east end parking areas.

In Case of Emergency, Call Clubhouse: 419-684-5339

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