Author Gord Deval is the grand "old guy" of sport fishing in Canada. Few anglers can match him when it comes to his familiarity with trout and fly fishing. Internationally known, he holds countless bait and fly casting records. Canadian and North American champion, he has represented Canada 32 times in North American and World competitions. Memories of Magical Waters contains a richness of fishing lore related to Deval’s experiences on numerous streams, rivers and lakes in Ontario and Quebec. Throughout his extensive outdoor reminiscences are many insights into fish habitats, fishing "how tos" and general insider tips on lures and casting techniques.
Deval’s fishing adventures of over fifty years take the reader to such exceptional trout waters as the Ganaraska River in Ontario, the Broadback River in Quebec, Lake Simcoe and many almost inaccessible waters within Ontario’s Land O’ Lakes, Haliburton, Muskoka and the Kawarthas, and streams closer to urban centres. His experiences include ice fishing and stream fishing, as well as fishing on open waters. As an angler, he has "wet a line" with a veritable "who’s who" of fishermen past and present.
Gord Deval holds, or has held, over one hundred records both nationally and internationally, including several world records, during more than six decades of tournament casting. He won the North American All-Round Senior Championship fourteen times. He was the president of the Ontario Fly and Bait Casting Association in the 1950s, while organizing the first Canadian Casting Association and acting as its president. Deval has also competed thirty-seven times in the North American Championships, winning many titles and awards. He has been the recipient of Ontario's Athletic Achievement Award every year since this special recognition became available.
Deval has been a qualified casting instructor since 1949, beginning with the old Toronto Anglers and Hunters Association and at present with his Scarborough Fly and Bait Casting Association. He estimates that he has personally taught over a thousand anglers and tournament casters the finer points of the sport. In 1995, Deval and his club hosted the North American Championships in the City of Scarborough. It was agreed by most of the participants to have been one of the best of these events ever held. He has qualified for the select All American team numerous times over the years after being the first Canadian to ever win that honour.
In addition to his casting, fishing and cooking seminars, Deval also teaches rod building and fly tying. A collection of his personally tied trout flies was presented to Viscount Alexander, the then Governor General of Canada, on behalf of the Toronto Anglers and Hunters Association back in the 1950s and he has since taught many hundreds of others the intricacies of fly tying.
Of course, there have been many radio and television appearances along the way, with casting, fishing, fish-cookery demonstrations and seminars. He has also written many magazine articles and a number of books.
Deval was honoured in 1992 by the City of Scarborough with a special award for his service and dedication to his sport and the city over the years. As already mentioned, in 1995 Deval and his club hosted the North American Fly and Bait Casting championships, attended by over eighty competitors. Despite the rigours of running this event, he managed to establish a new record in the two-hand distance spinning event - 428 feet. Deval believes that the biggest honour he has had to date was being selected to receive the Bi-Centennial Award of Merit and Medal presented to him by the Mayor of the City, His Worship Frank Faubert, in 1996. This was recognition as one of a very exclusive group, the top 200 Scarborough citizens to have brought honour to the city over its history during the past 200 years.