OUR VIEWS: Kindly share the pier

Jun 26, 2012


Countless miles of bike and hiking trails, beautiful sand dunes and beaches, and a picturesque lake are there for all to enjoy.

Early risers that make their way out to the North Pier on most mornings will find fishermen lined up from one end to the other trying their luck at catching salmon, steelhead and perch. It’s interesting to watch the varying degrees of expertise present.

Even more interesting is the demeanor of those that line the wall. Some are willing to share their knowledge with those who might just be getting started; while others act as if they own the pier, and anyone who infringes on their territory is a nuisance.

Fishing is a family sport that is often passed from one generation to the other. It’s a time when special memories are made that will be talked about for years to come. The anticipation of what’s on the other end of the line as the pole bends and the reel screeches is an unforgettable time for the young and old alike. It’s times like these, over the years, that turn young fishermen into old ones.

Unfortunately, not all experiences on the pier are positive. The wind that often blows can create a challenging situation for the young, inexperienced angler when trying to keep lines from drifting into someone else’s area. This is part of fishing and those that fish in a public area must remember that. A day that starts with excitement and anticipation of “catching a big one” can easily turn into an unpleasant experience due to the attitudes of those on the pier.

We encourage those that use the pier to remember that it’s there for all to use and that their actions on any given day may shape the fishing memories of others for years to come.

Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung, Kevin Collier and Liz Stuck. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to news@grandhaventribune.com or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.



I typically frequent the South pier for walks on the weekends and don't run into too many fisherman. The only issue I see there would be that they leave their disgarded fish laying on the peir to rot. The one small issue I have are the teenagers who crowd on the beach side to jump off in large numbers. The seem to be oblivious to others around them and sometimes it's hard to get through. I think a little common sence politeness goes a long way.

Mark Brooky

If the kids who year after year jump off the pier, oblivious to the jagged danger below the water's surface, had any common sense, they just wouldn't do it! But common sense and teenagers (generally speaking) is an oxymoron.


Yes, It would also be good if the boaters would go farther out and away from the pier before making a turn into the lake. I have lost several fishing rigs because the boater was in a hurry to turn and cut or tangled my line. Some of these boaters don't understand what fishing line will do to their motors and props. A little courtesy would go a long way.


It would be really nice if the people fishing didn't try to hook people in the water on purpose. My husband and I scuba dive the pier a couple times a year, in the afternoons, with a dive flag away from the sea wall - only to be bombed with hooks. My husband had a hook actually hook his wet suit and had to cut the line with a knife. Curtesy goes both ways - boaters and fisherman.


we don't walk the North pier you speak of much because of the 5 mile drive through Ferrysburg, but do walk the South pier that is attached to the Grand Haven State Park all the time. The people fishing there are good bunch for the most part, answering tourist questions like 'are you fishing for crabs?', 'are there barracuda in there?', etc. They can and do actually teach people a little about our area.

As for the idiot teenage pier jumpers, we have to wait for someone to break their neck before anything could possibly be done about that...


I think people need clean up their language as well out on the pier. I have two small boys and I see a lot of other children out there as well, and in the last year or two the foul language has gotten considerably worse. I hear the "f" bomb way too much. I think people need to have a little more respect when out in public like that.


It sounds so good. I am looking forward on this. I can see that it is really more effective. Good job on this. - Mercy Ministries


Post a Comment

Log in to your account to post comments here and on other stories, galleries and polls. Share your thoughts and reply to comments posted by others. Don't have an account on GrandHavenTribune.com? Create a new account today to get started.