Nine years ago I was approached by my friend and fellow angler Willie Mitchell to attend the inaugural Fishing For Kids event. Having fished the Langara area since the late eighties I was not going to miss the chance to return to one of my favorite fishing places in the world.
After dragging thousands and thousands of herring through the water over these past 9 years ‘Karma” was finally good to me up there at good old Big Mac (Macpherson Point) where I was blessed to catch a 42.4lb derby winning chinook. There are no words to describe the feeling that comes after participating for 9 years and then it finally happening. It all happens in a moment – your rod tip starts to twitch – you grab the rod and set the hook and then game on….. I watched my partner skate around the ice twice(2012 and 2014) hoisting the iconic Stanley Cup – the look on his face was magical. If you really want to see the happy dance that comes after 9 years of trying just ask my partner Willie for the video he shot on his iPhone of me bouncing around the boat hugging our guide Jordan.
I have had the opportunity to watch the Fishing for Kids event grow into what is now arguably the Best Fishing Charity event on the West Coast. Why so good you ask? The kick off event at the Rosewood Hotel Georgia Reflections lounge that featured Canadian Grammy award winner Tom Cochrane was only the beginning. The short flight up from Vancouver International airport in a plane filled with anglers all brimming with anticipation about winning the $200K first prize. Followed by the arrival at the beautiful Westcoast Fishing Club lodge on Langara Island that immediately becomes energized by 44 excited anglers all vying for the biggest Chinook. Make no mistake these anglers are all serious about catching the ‘Big One” – but that seriousness is immersed in a fun filled 3 days that sees all kind of joking and kidding amongst the teams. Each day after a fine meal in the Clubhouse Lodge you often see the participants lounging on the couch sipping a cocktail swapping fishing stories about the one that got away.
Every year we have the privilege of hearing from a child and parent who face the challenges of Autism – without fail every year many eyes well up in tears as we listen to the parent speak and express gratitude for the funds raised by this Charity event and how it contributes to a better life for families facing challenges. A moment that everyone reflects on how blessed life really is - and how awesome it is for a group of fisherman to come together and do what they love most while supporting a such worthy cause.
In the words of Elton John “ you should never take more than you give”. Fishing for Kids is all about “giving”…about “fishing and friendship”…”enjoying life”… and most of all having fun.
As a wise man once said “he who follows is always behind”- Ha-Ha – from the Mitchell /Langereis team we say – “catch us if you can”!!!!
See you all in 2015 for the Tenth Anniversary Fishing For Kids Event.