Just wondering how many of you bring along your fishing rod when backpacking? I'd like to bring mine along but my backpacking buddy is terrified it'll attract bears. What do you guys do to keep the stink off? Obviously I wouldn't be cooking the fish near my tent but I think it'll be hard to avoid getting that fresh fish smell on my hands. Guess I could bring disposable gloves and hang them with my food.
Yes, this fish "stink" you speak of may be more pungent to you and most other humans. That said, a bear's sense of smell is the most acute in the animal kingdom. Hiking thru the backcountry even if you were to vacuum pack every morsel of food a bear will still detect your scent two valleys over, or more accurately up to 30km away. The question is, is how much of an effort does the bruin intend to make when it knows a ground squirrel-or another food source-is a mere few hundred metres away. "Keep a clean camp" for sure but don't ever be under the impression because you do, that you're now "invisible" to the bear.
As far as the fishing goes I carry a collapsible fly rod complete with a dry and wet line. Along with a few flies and that combo at least for me finds me usually successful in a high alpine rocky mountain lake. If I don't return the fish to the lake I immediately cook it, eat it and burn what's left over. Biodegradable soap cleans what needs to be cleaned, including me, but again don't believe for a minute the bears can't smell me or my camp no matter how clean it is. I've followed this routine for decades and have never had an issue. Good luck.
Last edited by woodenshoes; 01-06-2018 at 07:10 AM.