We all know Chad Hoover for his great kayak fishing content, ranging from on-the-water highlights to tips, reviews and more. But this video is a whole new kettle of fish, as he faces a foe unlike any other—angry landowners. Hoover is clearly floating on a public waterway, but the encounter escalates when the landowners threaten his life. This video is a must-watch for any angler who wonders how to handle harassment or threats while kayak fishing.
Harassment While Kayak Fishing is a Growing Problem
As Hoover describes it, “this is the video that I never wanted to make.” He has caught other run-ins on camera before, but he felt compelled to share this footage because of the violent threats. “This landowner took it to the point where he threatened to kill me and said he would shoot me, and he had the right to…drag my body up onto his property.”
Searching for Sheltered Waters
The day’s fishing starts out tough, with windy conditions driving Hoover into more sheltered waters at a nearby creek mouth. “I told my videographer to hang back, because it was such a small creek that I didn’t want to spook the fish,” he explains. The inlet is blocked by an illegal gate, but Hoover stays on the outside and catches a fish on his very first cast.
They soon have company, however, as two landowners rush out looking for a confrontation. Hoover tries to smooth things over by making small talk, but is met with curses and insults when he refuses to leave right away. “Who knows what number of reasons, or they could just be irritable, angry people, right?” he suggests. But the game changes when threats start to fly, leading to an impassioned response from our host.
Distance is Your Best Friend
Hoover describes being shocked, then angered, before realizing that the only safe option was to distance himself and call the police. “Don’t do what I did,” he advises afterward, “and dig your heels in—even if you’re catching fish. Back out of the situation, and if you feel as though you’re wronged, notify authorities.”
Also, take time to familiarize yourself with local laws that protect hunters and anglers from harassment. A good starting point is the searchable State Wildlife Law Project from the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies.
Visit the Chad Hoover Fishing YouTube channel for more top-notch kayak fishing content.