Say what you will about far-flung fishing adventures … that they’re not worth the carbon footprint they create, or that they’re the fool’s errand for anglers with more money than sense … but the search for massive brook trout in the farthest reaches of Patagonia has a certain romance to it. And now, the full version of the film, “Finding Fontinalis,” is available for download, so anyone can chase the elusive 25-inch brook trout vicariously through the eyes of a handful of fortunate anglers.
The film (trailer above) chronicles the history of brook trout in America—as Patagonia’s Yvon Chouinard notes, “We don’t have big brook trout in America anymore”— and pushes a conservation/restoration agenda that hopes to one day see trophy brookies living once again within their natal waters of the United States. Given the development and the severely altered landscapes where big brookies once swam, that dream may remain a dream. Perhaps more importantly, there are still big brookies that swim the lakes and rivers of eastern Canada—maybe these are the brookies we ought to focus on.
— Chris Hunt