Fishing is an activity that the whole family can enjoy. As a parent, you will experience the unbridled joy of a son or daughter catching their first fish. For the child, they can enjoy a pleasant day on the water and learn a skill that can bring them a lifetime of joy.
Check out this video about this mother’s story and how fishing has become an important part of her life and that of her children.
1. Get fishing tackle
The best approach is to keep the equipment simple. A good starter set for younger children is an inexpensive rod and reel combination with a closed reel (also known as a spin-cast reel). Line tangles are limited by the design. Older children who are able to keep throwing can use the popular spinning rod and reel. Adults also prefer spinning tackle. The folks at your local bait and fishing shop can help you adjust the rod to the reel and select the appropriate fishing line and end device (hooks, sinkers, bobber, etc.).
2. Choose the right bait
The fishing boxes of experienced anglers are filled with artificial baits such as spinners, jigs and spoons. However, beginners and children should use live bait, preferably earthworms (which can also be found at this local bait and fishing shop). Worms are easy to hang on a hook and do not require any sophisticated action or technique to bite a fish. Simply pull the hook through the center of the worm, leaving both ends free. Attach a bobber to the line and then clip some weight (“split shot”) a few inches below the bobber. The weight of the split shot puts the bait on the fish. You’re done.
3. Find places to fish
Small ponds and lakes that are home to panfish such as crappies, catfish, bluegills and other sunfish are ideal places to fish, as your young protégés do not have to deal with the current of a river. Have everyone toss their lines in the water and then sit back and wait for those bobbers to submerge to signal that a fish is on the line. In most cases the fish hook themselves. All you have to do is tell your child to curl up. Unhook the fish, re-bait it and have it cast again. More information, tips and tricks can be found at takemefishing.org.
4. Keep safety first
In many cases, you can do all of this from the shore. However, if you’re fishing from a boat (or if the family is fishing on a dock over deeper water), make sure everyone is wearing a personal flotation device (PFD).
5. Enjoy every minute
Don’t forget to take lots of photos of your first fish. You will enjoy the memory for years to come, and your children will enjoy these pictures too. Get your fish on TakeMeFishing.org