Talk­ing with tourists

The Gulf News (Port aux Basques) - - FOCUS - BY ROS­ALYN ROY Ros­ Twit­ter: @tyger­lylly

MACDOUGALLS, NL – Some­where in the cool dark of night on a crowded beach, an On­tario tourist clutched a bucket of capelin, ob­served the crowd plung­ing in and out of the wa­ter, and asked some ques­tions.

Specif­i­cally, John Coutts wanted to know how much longer the fish would con­tinue to beach them­selves that night, and if they would con­tinue to do so in fol­low­ing nights. And do capelin do this ev­ery year?

The an­swers turned out to be for roughly an­other hour, for one more night, and yes, but not ev­ery year at MacDougalls. Capelin spawn by beach­ing them­selves, but on Satur­day, July 8, most couldn’t make it past the horde of dip nets to reach the sand.

Coutts and his wife Peggy, who hails from the area, are cur­rently vis­it­ing an aunt and cousins in Port aux Basques as they have done ev­ery few years.

“The cousins found out about ( the capelin rolling) and within 10 min­utes we were on the bikes coming down,” Coutts said of his un­ex­pected fish­ing ad­ven­ture. Coutts has never ac­tu­ally eaten capelin – some­thing his cousin Art An­der­son has promised to rem­edy. Un­til his feast is ready, Coutts is con­tent to en­joy the spec­ta­cle.

“I think it’s amaz­ing. It’s a learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence and it’s ex­cit­ing,” said Coutts. “I ab­so­lutely love New­found­land and New­found­land peo­ple.”


On­tario res­i­dent John Coutts rushed with rel­a­tives to MacDougalls beach on Satur­day, July 8 to haul in some capelin when the fish beached late in the evening.

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