If you have finally saved enough money for the insanely expensive BC angling licenses, and the steelhead season up-charge for rental cars or fishing guides, you should bone up on the “Canadian” ways.
To start you will want to load up your spotify playlists with Neil Young, Tragically Hip, Feist and Michael Buble. Toss on some Stompin’ Tom Connors and Leonard Cohen for some bonus points. This will immediately get you through any border line ups faster than a canuck on skates.
The first thing you will want to do upon entering Canada is shift down a couple gears. Although you won’t be on island time here, the pace is a just a bit more relaxed.
To get acclimatized, the best thing to do is order a Caesar from the nearest pup and watch a period of the Vancouver Canucks game. The clamato, celery salt, worcestershire and vodka will do its thing while you ponder whether to set the hook or drop a loop on your first Skeena steelhead.
As the stereotype proves, Canadians are quite obsessed with polite manners and proper etiquette. They don’t care so much if you eat your dinner with your salad fork, but you sure as hell better start at the top of a run and step through when fishing with others.
To avoid stirring up a hornets nest it’s best to keep your fish in the water at all times, and never beach them on dry rocks. Steelhead are as sacred as Don Cherry is this country so best to follow these rules religiously.
To blend in with the locals you will need to learn the dialect properly and know that it is not pronounced “aboot”, it’s actually “aboat”. Politically most Canadians are ready to vote in Seth Rogan or Drake instead of the current administration. If you want to discuss some hot button topics in Canada like the oil pipelines, or health care, make sure you have a couple cups of hot Tim Hortons coffee if it’s before noon, or cold beer after.
If you drink caesars, watch a bit of hockey, like Neil Young, and do everything you can to protect wild steelhead you are actually a lot more Canadian than you may think. You will fit right in. If you have yet to come fishing in Canada, it is now time to make it happen. US dollar is way up and the runs of fish are strong. Hope to see you on the water!