by Michael Kurre, Mentor Coordinator
Fishing is much more than dunking a worm and hoping for that tug on the other end of the line. My definition of fishing is even different than the dictionary version: the sport of catching fish.
Fishing is to me is all about the anticipation of how the angling opportunity might pan out. It’s about preparing your gear for the adventure, studying lake maps for the spot on the spot (where the fish should be, but often times are not) or dreaming of the big catch. You never know what a day’s fishing is going to bring.
Fishing is about managing the resource for the right habitat the fish need to flourish and connecting with the outdoors as in ducklings trying to keep up with mother mallard or watching a bald eagle soaring high in sky with the greatest of ease.
Fishing is catching your own bait by digging for worms, tracking down a grasshopper or turning over rocks for insects. And it’s looking for signs that tell you fish might be in the area. Maybe it’s a blip on your locator, watching the birds dive on baitfish or a windswept point which congregates baitfish for larger predators.
Fishing is the photo memory of your first catch, showing off your trophy of a life-time or exaggerating on the one that got away.
Fishing is building a gourmet sandwich from last night’s venison roast, harvesting some fish for the frying pan and releasing even more to provide another angler the same thrill of the catch. Plus an added bonus, a fish dinner is healthy part of a good diet.
Fishing is developing a life-long activity that encourages stewardship of natural resources.
Most importantly, Fishing is sharing the experience with friends and family, by carrying out what Fishing is to you.
I’ve casted a few ides of what Fishing is to me, but how can you make the difference by what fishing means to you?
The Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation (RBFF) developed the Anglers’ Legacy program back in 2006 to set the hook on some of the country’s most avid anglers (the sport’s strongest ambassadors) to “Take the Pledge” of taking someone fishing this year. You too can pass on the life-sport of angling by giving back what you’ve been given, the gift of fishing, by taking somebody who has not enjoyed what Fishing is.
RBFF also provides a tackle box full of angling information to help you in teaching aquatic education, as well as helping your students discover the biggest classroom of them all, the outdoors. The website provides downloads, free magazines, links, hobbies, licenses, places to fish, how to introduce somebody new to angling and boating, fun and games and much more.
And don’t forget, Take-A-Kid Fishing weekend is June 11-13, 2010. Minnesota residents 16 and older can fish for free during these days when they accompany an angler 15 and under. Here’s a real opportunity to stock up on memories and share what Fishing is to you with somebody new.