I am so mad today!
Early this AM I got up and went to fish a lake out East I had been to last week and done very well. This like as small but legal access. Everrything I have read in the pamphlets and on the website for the New York State DEC says it's public access.
I was on the lake fishing (and doing well I might add) when I hear a loud yelling voice say "Bring it in now!" I looked around and I saw two men in what appeared to be uniforms standing at the launch site giving me the come-here motion.
I figured it was the NYS game wardens checking for fishing licenses. No problem. I had mine.
So I paddled over and as I got closer I notice they weren't game wardens but town police. OK. Thought a bit odd local cops would be checking fishing licenses but no biggy.
When I got to shore one of the cops asked if I had my fishing license and to see it. So I handed it over. Very standard stuff. I had nothing to hide.
He commented that I had come a long way to fish this lake (it's about 35 miles East of home for me). I responded that the fishing here is good and "You gotta go where the fish are!" with a smile.
He replied "Well, you won't be able to fish here much longer."
I was perplexed. Did he mean weeds or algea would soon chock the lake? Did he mean thunderstorms were on the way?
So I asked "What do you mean?"
He said "In a few weeks we're putting up signs 'No Parking Without Town Permit'.
I was stunned!
He went on, "...We've had a problem with a lot of out-of-towners fishing this lake" (meaning people like me!). The he smiles, hands me back my fishing license and says "Enjoy the rest of the day."
If you felt a suddent *THUD* around 10:30 this morning that was the sound of my heart hitting the ground.
My morning was completely shot. I just lost all motivation in fishing. So I packed it in and came home.
What the fuck?!
I pay nearly $13,000 a year in property taxes (yes, you read that correctly) to Suffolk County and I can't fish this little lake because I just don't happen to live in this one-stop-light town?!?!
The only possible salvation for me is I already buy the Town of Southold non-resident parking permit (at a cost of $150!) so I think (hope!) that permit will cover this location. I'll call the Town Clerk on Monday to see if anyone knows (but even that doesn't mean the cop on patrol will know!).
Then again, why should I care? By this time next year gas will be over $7/gallon. I'll have to junk my SUV (who's going to buy a 9 y/o SUV when gas is $7/gal?) and get a Smartcar. Can't fit much fishing tackle in those.
I'm sooooo pissed off now!!
Little by little (sometimes not so little too!) public access is being removed. Meanwhile taxes and fees go up!
And they wonder why people aren't coming to their hole-in-the-wall towns and spending money there. Why the hell should I?
Gotta love Long Island: Send your money but you stay home.
No wonder young people are leaving Long Island (and NYC). I'm going to encourage my kids to get the hell out as soon as possible.