Fishing With Kenny: Things We Should Do and Some Things We Shouldn’t
article by Kenny Covington
To me fishing is the greatest outdoor activity we have ever been blessed with. There’s no better way to spend a day. I’m sure my friends that hunt would argue with me about that, but my argument is based on the fact that 70% of the earth is water, so I believe we should spend as much time as we can enjoying it with a fishing pole in hand. Now that I have stated my fishing beliefs, I am often asked about mistakes I see other anglers make. I usually reply with, “As long as they are on the water, there is nothing they are doing wrong” and I honestly believe that. However, I do have a few suggestions that have nothing to do with lures and specific techniques.
In this month’s BayouLife column, we are going to suggest and discuss some ideas that may help you become a better angler, but I know will help you to enjoy this sport even more.
Here are some things that I try to keep in mind no matter if I am fishing a tournament, pre-fishing for an event or just fishing for fun with a friend. While most of these ideas are not set in stone, a few of them are critical when looking at the big picture.
Have Fun. That is why we go fishing in the first place. Just to be in the outdoors, or enjoy the time spent with a family member or maybe it’s time spent to introduce someone to this great sport. No matter what your reason is for being on the water, make sure you enjoy it.
Take care of your equipment. Our excursions can become nightmares when our equipment isn’t in working order. Take time off the water to maintain or properly upkeep your equipment. Are the batteries being charged properly? There is nothing like getting to the lake and your motor won’t crank or your trolling motor doesn’t work. Do you need to replace line on a few reels? Fresh line makes any reel work better, and there is nothing more frustrating than dealing with line issues that could have been easily avoided. Is your boat gassed up? I’ve seen this more times than I care to remember. The only way to know exactly how much gas is in your boat is to stop and put some in it.
Things such as these may seem to be common sense issues, but I have seen these on several occasions. As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is always better than a pound of cure.” I am willing to bet that was first said by a fisherman, who owned his own boat.
Find, figure then catch. No matter what species of fish you are trying to catch, no matter how many fish you are told supposedly live in a lake, it’s not very often that you are going to catch fish as soon as your bait hits the water. Catching fish is the easy part. It’s the locating and figuring out how to catch them that is the hard part.
Patience is a virtue and a necessity. This is probably the biggest requirement when fishing with children or really just fishing in general. It’s easy to become frustrated when the fish aren’t biting and even more so when fishing with children. Make sure your trip is about the kids more than it is about catching fish. If they get tired of fishing and want to eat, let them eat. Or maybe they will want to play in the minnow bucket. Or take a short boat ride. Let them determine the atmosphere of the trip, and you will more than likely gain a fishing partner for life. When it comes to fishing and kids, please make sure you refer back to “Have fun.”
Fishing is probably more popular than it ever has been. Today, when you add the other water sports that people enjoy, our water ways are more crowded than ever. This often times leads to a new set of problems.
Who owns the water? The correct answer depends on who you ask. Bass fishermen have long been accused of thinking narrow mindedly about the rights and wrongs when it comes to particular bodies of water. White perch fishermen are beginning to stake claim to their water and their arguments can go on and on. Landowners have suddenly decided that it’s their right to create their own private lakes using water that is never theirs to begin with. I haven’t even mentioned water skiers, jet skiers and the other pleasure boaters.
In a perfect world, we would be able to find a common ground and learn to share our waters without conflict and controversy. I’m not sure such a place will ever exist. That being said, I do believe that common sense and common courtesy would go a long way in making things better for all parties involved.
I hope we have shared some information that you can put to good use. For those of you preparing for or beginning your hunting seasons, please be careful in the woods. For those of you still on the water, take care and catch one for me, and I will see you next month!