Seminars@Hadley Presents:

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Fishing with Lawrence Euteneier on the ‘Blind Fishing Boat’
 
Ever wonder what it’s like to be alone in a boat without being able to see? Captain Lawrence Euteneier will entertain and educate you with stories of fishing
from the world’s first fishing boat for the blind. 

Lawrence is a life-long and semi-professional fisherman who competes in fishing tournaments, organizes guided fishing adventures, advises the fishing industry
on accessibility and teaches people with vision loss to fish. Functionally blind since age 22, Lawrence has also invented the world’s first fishing boat
for the blind (www.blindfishingboat.com). 

Learn about fishing techniques and gear that will have you catching more than your sighted friends. It’s those with experience using their sense
of touch who catch the most fish.

The following Link will take you to the Hadley website where you can listen to or download the presentation:
http://www.hadley-school.org/2_f_past_seminar_hadley.asp

The Hadley School for the Blind,
700 Elm Street, Winnetka,
IL 60093,
800-323-4238

1 Comment

  1. nicki says:

    I have always been someone who, despite my disabilities, wanted to be involved in sports, especially any sport that involved water. So when it recently
    came to my attention that there would be an online seminar about fishing for the visually impaired my attention was caught hook, line, and sinker.  

    Lawrence Utineer was the main presenter of the seminar. He had been a champion fisherman when he had vision and was determined to continue pursuing the
    sport even after its loss. To this end, he developed a number of techniques that allow blind individuals to become skilled fishermen, and learned some
    surprising things along the way.

    He learned, first and foremost, that fishing is an activity uniquely suited to the blind. When fishing, you are mainly relying on touch, which levels the
    playing field. Blind people have had years to hone their ability to sense the slightest movement through touch, and are unlikely to be distracted by the
    sights and sounds around them, as concentration is another skill we hone quickly. In fact, when Mr. Utineer began sponsoring fishing excursions and training
    guides in blindness etiquette and fishing techniques, they were consistently surprised, even shocked, to be out-fished by blind people, especially since
    they were experienced hands at the sport.

    During the seminar, Mr. Utineer gave a number of helpful tips to blind fishing beginners, describing each implement that should be used in precise detail.
    For example, his description of a closed face reel was: an object which resembles a coke can; the line slowly feeds through the hole as one is casting.
     

    He described how a person moves from a closed face reel, which is not easily tangled like open faced ones but which can only catch small fish, to a spin
    caster’s rod, which has an open faced reel underneath and can catch much larger fish.

    There were some fascinating tips about which sorts of rods and reels are useful. You would think that a rod which is light and bends easily would be much
    easier to catch fish with, at least I would. However, with a rod like that, he carefully explained, the rod absorbs the tension which lets you know the
    fish is pulling on the line, just as a car with good springs and shocks absorbs the tension when driving over bumps in the road.

    He rather killed my high for fishing when he described unhooking the fish.  You are supposed to hold the fish on either side of its body just under the
    gills with two fingers while gently working the hook out of its mouth.  However, many people have accidentally pinched the gills, permanently damaging
    the fish. This had the environmentalist in me howling in protest, and if I ever went fishing, I am rather afraid I wouldn’t enjoy it for being tense with
    anxiety that I would hurt them. And yes, I realize I have just revealed that I do not have the slightest trace of Davey Crocket or Daniel Boone flowing
    through my veins.

    Even as my interest waned, I was fascinated by the articulate, concise way he covered his subject. He spoke of lures, of how at night, you would want to
    use artificial lures of lighter colors while during the day, lures of darker colors would be best. He talked about what color lures worked best in different
    clarity levels of water. For example, in very clear water, silver or clear lures work best, while in dark stained water, the darkest colored lures are
    ideal. He enumerated the pros and cons of different types of fishing line and hooks.

    And then he said something that I found very good advice. He said that if you sign up for a fishing club, not to tell them you are blind ahead of time. 
    In this way, they will judge you by the merits you show when you arrive instead of forming an impression of your limitations before you ever have time
    to refute it. I found this especially profound because while my disability is a part of my life and how I live it, it is not the first thing I want people
    to know about me, and it is certainly not what I wish people to judge me by.

    All and all, despite having numerous technical difficulties, Mr. Utineer managed to captivate me for over an hour with his stories and wisdom.  Although
    I don’t think fishing is the sport for me, I look forward to checking out his website
    https://www.blindfishingboat.com
    simply because he gave me an interest in the subject in general, and made me very proud, listening to him recount his accomplishments, to be part of the
    blind community today.

    If anything I have said here has interested you, I encourage you to check it ut as well. And if you are a blind person looking to fish, don’t let my environmentalist
    leanings prejudice you against the sport—let his site open the door for you.

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