Fishing is fishing for many of us. The location, the type of fishing we engage in on any given day or what species of fish we are chasing doesn’t really matter. We are, after all, fishing and that’s all that really matters.
There are a few among us, however, who see it differently, and are consumed by their passion and have a tunnel vision for their craft and all that goes along with it. There is no better example of this than the fly fishing purist, such as our own Peter Blackmore.
Blackmore lives and breathes fly fishing and is a humble guy who quietly dodges along sharing his experience, his technique and his hand-crafted flies with all of us who have been lucky enough to be on the receiving end of his knowledge, generosity and passion.
He has been consumed by fly fishing since he was in his teens in Templeman, a tiny community on the Bonavista Peninsula of Newfoundland where he grew up. He began by tying his own flies and fly-fishing speckles.
He carried this passion with him into his adult life and continued to grow his experience and appetite more and more as time passed. As fate would have it, Blackmore found his way to Labrador as a young man and landed in the middle of some of the best fly fishing waters on the planet.
Over the years Blackmore has honed his skills as a master fly fisherman and master fly tying specialist. Although he has fished salmon in the rivers, he has spent an endless amount of time fishing speckles in Labrador.
Although he enjoys fishing any of the species, his heart is in fishing Ouananiche, the most challenging of them all.
He is an example of more doesn’t necessarily mean better.
In his humble fashion he said, “I don’t have a cabin, I don’t have a boat and I really don’t travel a long ways from town. I just walk into the places that look like they should have a few fish and start fishing.”
His simple philosophy, the remarkable inventory of experience and a pocket full of his proven hand-crafted flies seems to be all he needs to have for many successful days.
When we entered his fly tying room there was little doubt that this was the place where a lot of the magic occurs. A small space filled with fly tying supplies, his vice and his chair and it was easy to tell that this is his wheel house. There were sheets of foam, covered with his most recent collections of his handcrafted flies. They were covered with Streamers, Bombers, Bugs, Salmon Flies, endless examples of many wet and dry flies in all sizes and colors. All of these created by the master’s hands out of wool, feathers and Bucktails, all limited in character only by his imagination. It’s an artist’s gallery, for sure.
Locally, Blackmore has given an enormous amount of time and effort to teach our youth the importance of our fish and the many techniques and the importance of the catch and release philosophy. He has also been the driving force in chasing down sponsors for catch and release fishing contests and “take a kid fishing” days in Labrador West.
He also created a Facebook Salmon and Trout Fishing page six years ago. He originally created the site for himself and a few buddies to share information on fly fishing and fly tying techniques, the where and how to.
This page is also a valuable teaching tool on resource management initiatives and the value and technique of the catch and release policy that we all have to embrace. This page also encourages the inclusion of our youth, female members and parents and families sharing some of their time fishing.
This small group of buddies has over the last six years grown into with at last count was 9,395 members from Labrador stretching across Canada, the USA, Slovakia, Great Britain, Germany, a global representation all started by Blackmore, here in the Big Land.
There is an old saying that says, “those who care the most about something do the most to make sure it continues.”
There is no better example of this than Peter Blackmore.