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Setting the net

Photo: Unplash / public domain

Author: Ian Johnson, The Pas, MB

In the great New Iceland tradition of my father, Palmi Johnson from Riverton, the square hook was his gold standard. Every summer we snuck out at sunset and set a net for lake trout on Lake Athapap, totally illegal of course, but that was part of the joy for my Dad, like extra butter on his hard fish treat.
Our Lund boat and Mercury outboard were loaded up just as the last rays of sunlight disappeared and we could avoid the dreaded conservation officers scouting for poachers who were about. But we were Icelanders – Vikings of the inland sea, bred to the waters, inherent rights – or so my early teen years imagined. It was really just an outing and an unforgettable time, in retrospect – the best part of summer.
Looking back, this must have been suspicious. Who heads out boating in the near dark, then comes home hours later?  . . .

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