01-05-2006, 10:21 AM
There seems to be a general consensus in the "2006 Suggestion Box" thread that we as a fishing community should devote more of our time and energy to instilling our passion in our youth. I am wondering if there is an opportunity to leverage our relationship with the Big Brother organization and take it to another level. I envision a list of anglers around the country/world that would be willing to take a single pair out fishing for a day. I don't know if there are liability concerns but it might be worth investigating. I think this could be as simple as posting a quick request in a section of the forum that a kid would like to go fishing if someone could spare the time. Whada ya think?
You know where my mind is on this topic, let's roll with it.
01-06-2006, 11:41 PM
I'd love to do this if I had a boat, but there's very little shore fishing to be found near me. :(
I have a kid to teach how to fish in a few years though. My daughter is getting bigger every day!
In the past my most effective efforts at this has been fishing with rubber-legged poppers for sunfish as a first venue. Everything is very visual, there is action, and it's easy to hold their attention.
About half the time I have been able to elevate the game to try to get the largemouths that are seen hanging around / cruising. This ups the ante and if the kids are into it you can tell. Some will forget about the kibbies entirely seeking the holy grail others would rather have more action, this is an individual thing.
After showing him the whole routine I once left my son to his own devices with a popper and a 6wt as I walked to structure break seeking a trout. He was doing well hooking and releasing pumkinseeds when suddenly I look back and his rod is bent to the hilt!
I look out to the shallows and it turns out a coromorant has got his sunfish in it's mouth while he is pulling as hard as could be to get it back. He was not at all intimidated by the bird which eventually stood up on it's hind legs with wings flared to try to scare him off. NO way - my son had a determined look and had that rod bent to the hilt as if he was in a tug of war over a toy. The bird finally got the fish but what a riot.
Another successful strategy is the one we take for Big Brother Day on Monomoy. The area is captivating in it's own right so even when the fish play hard to get it's an experience and the wonderful letters and emails we get from the kids prove that even when the fish were being difficult.
A boat certainly is not necessary, in fact it's much easier to take kids on shore usually. If you lack shore access nearby, arrange something on a beach area in spring or fall before/after swimming season; or else give a day to the Big Brothers, Boy Scouts, or any group I am sure they would be glad we did.
01-07-2006, 01:50 PM
I've looked into the Big Brothers program before but they require a HUGE time commitment. You can't do any one-time things. You have to sign up for a minimum of one year and I think it's every other weekend. I can understand why, they don't want kids to get attached to somebody that's not committed to it.
You must have missed this. We do this every year!
(Feel free to join us this summer)