A Day For The Kids
I have spent a great deal of my life taking fishing way too serious, and sometimes I just need an attitude adjustment. If you want to remember the reasons you fell in love with fishing in the first place, take a day off and have fun. Take the kids fishing.
Tournament fishing, competitive fishing, and just the pressure we put on ourselves to catch more fish, can distract us from the simple pleasure of fishing. If you think I am wrong, put your rods aside and take a kid fishing. Watch their faces light up and the excitement on their faces when the learn to catch a fish. Let them have their fun, and try to remember how you felt when you were first learning.
Below are some tips for making the day all about the children, and helping them get the most out of the day.
My first tip is to make the day all about the kids. Leave your rods at home, and spend the day helping the new anglers learn the ropes. I have tried to fish and help out the youngsters, and it just does not work. Remember they will need help with just about everything.
Children remember things that may not leave that much of an impression on an adult. I can assure you they will remember the time you spend together most of all. Along with fishing have a picnic and spend some time discovering the nature that surrounds a body of water.
Remember for the most part the young angler will not be a professional, keep it super simple. If possible pick an area where there are few overhanging trees, and the fewer snags in the area the better. Check around and see if there is a lake or pond that other youths are using.
Take A Kid Fishing Program
In our area there is a program that organizes small tournaments, with events for different age groups. The winners receive prizes like tackle boxes, rod and reel combos, and toys. This is a great way to start a young angler off, they focus more on activities that keep the youths entertained than on the competition.
Most of the tournaments are held at DNR stock ponds, which greatly increases a child’s chances of catching fish. The department of natural resources has a representative on site to educate on rules and regulations, as well as nature and wildlife.
My grandchildren attend as many of these events as they can. For the most part they don’t bring back many trophies saying they won, but if you listen to the stories they tell about how much fun they had it is hard to see them as anything but winners.
Remember that a young person’s attention span is about as long as a gnat, and you will have the key to planing a day that they will enjoy and remember for a long time to come.
Take along something to keep them occupied when the fish are not biting. Be prepared to get their bait out of every tree within casting distance, and be prepared to untangle a mess every 5 minutes. Help them out, but turn each mess into a learning opportunity. Teach them how to do for themselves, and they will try to become an expert.
This may sound like a lot of stress, but watch their faces as they learn new skills. On my last fishing trip with my grandson, I spent most of my time baiting hooks, fixing broken lines, and trying to teach him new skills. Somewhere during the day he became the teacher, and was showing papa how it was done.
At the end of the day he had caught an impressive stringer of good sized bass, and is still bragging about the day he out-fished his papa.I learned a lot that day, and I could not have been happier if I had caught every fish. Ask him today who is the better fisherman, him or papa, and he will tell you about the day he took papa to school.
That is one memory I am glad I could give him.
Share The Day, Make Some Memories
Make sure to take along plenty of drinks, and snacks. If the fish are not biting, it will only take a short time to loose interest and become bored. This is the perfect time to have lunch, roast some weenies, and just take a break. Even if they don’t catch fish they will still have some good memories to take home.
Make sure you take along insect spray, and a first aid kit. Also take along a camera. If they do catch a fish of a lifetime snap a photo, so they will have a poleroid mount.
In conclusion: Make the day all about the kids. Watch their faces light up, and see what simple things fascinate them. By watching them enjoy the day, you may find yourself forgetting your problems and having some fun.
Remember it’s all about the memories you make with the ones you love.
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