Thursday, May 17, 2012

Those That Catch Fish and Those That Just Fish

Have you ever noticed that there are certain people that always catch fish and usually good sized fish? Sure, anyone can get lucky and catch a really nice trout or redfish once in a while; I am not talking about that. I am talking about the person that day-in and day-out catches fish and more often than not better fish than others at the cleaning station. I am talking about the groups that put fish in the boat while other boats close by don’t catch anything. We all know the fisherman or guide that goes fishing and comes in with a limit more times than not on a regular basis. My grandfather always told me that 10 percent of the fisherman catch 90 percent of all the fish caught on any given day. That means the other 90 percent have to share the remaining 10 percent of the fish caught that day. Not very good odds if you are not in the top 10 percent.

The purpose of this article is to tell you how to be in the top 10 percent. Now, I am not talking about the guy that has the money to go out with a guide every trip, nor am I talking about those that can afford to fish in exotic destinations with the best guides. I am talking about being successful and in the top group wherever you fish. Remember, in order to be good at something you have to invest time, effort and money. One cannot pull your rods and reels out of the closet once or twice a year, head out on the water, and expect to be in the top 10 percent of the fisherman that come in to clean their catch at the end of the day.

Here is my advice to become good at whatever you pick. First try to go with others that are better than you are at the given task. Pay attention to what they do and ask questions. Learn what they have to teach and put it into practice. In this day and time you can buy books and DVDs from some of the best experts in their fields. If you want to become a top speckled trout fisherman then get videos from the guys that win trout tournaments and competitions or those that guide for trout and learn all you can from them. If you want to be a top shallow water fisherman go to shallow water fishing shows, seminars and hit the flats at every opportunity. Spend the money even if you have to take a whole group to go out and fish with one of the top guides in the area and for a species that you want to lean about. Ask questions of these experts, what an opportunity to learn to be a better fisherman. If you want to be a redfish fisherman of note, learn all you can about redfish; their habits and where they are in the water at different times of the year. Learn everything you can about them and the equipment you need to catch them. Practice casting, purchase the best most sensitive equipment you can afford and go fish. When you ask people questions ask what bait they used, what line weight, what depth were they fishing, what kind of retrieve, what colors were effective, what kind of rig and anything else that might help. Just do not ask them where they caught the fish. I find experts are more than willing to give out lots of information until someone wants to know their hotspots. Would you want to come back tomorrow or next week and find strangers fishing your best spot? I know I don’t and I figure no one else does either.
Lastly but most important is to set goals and stick to them. If you want to catch a 30 inch speckled trout then you must use baits and tactics to catch large speckled trout. That may mean fishing with large top water baits and catching nothing while those around you pull in 15 inch trout all day on shrimp tails. If your goal is just to catch more fish or fill your limit more often, evaluate how you are doing in reaching that goal. If you are not reaching your goal then don’t keep doing the same thing over and over. If what you are doing is not working change something and keep learning until it starts making sense. Did I say practice, practice, practice?

I know people that can look at an area and tell you where the fish will be, where the bait will come from, what part of the bay will hold the largest fish. They were not born with that ability, but learned it just as you can if you are willing to put in the time, effort and money to be in the top 10 percent.

Have fun in your quest, Wild Ed

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good article Ed and spot on. You've got to put in the time, money and thought in whatever sport you wish to excell in. Most of our sports are learned from others. Thanks for teaching me some of what you learned over the years.