I’m glad my Dad took the time to take me fishing when I was a young pup. Growing up through grade school and junior high I was really into sports and fishing time was limited but always fun. By the time I got in high school I realized I enjoyed hunting and fishing so much that I opted to spend my time roaming the woods and waters instead of practice and games.
I don’t regret it one bit and think it’s important to get kids involved in the outdoors at a young age. Yea sure sports were fun but hunting and fishing are activities you can participate in the rest of your life. It’s also always a learning process and the earlier you start the more you can learn.
There are too many distractions like computers and video games nowadays that kids have other ways of entertaining themselves. Add that with the fast paced lives we live in today’s society and free time can be somewhat limited. However, I think it’s important to make time because valuable lessons can be obtained in the outdoors.
There is no better way to learn about the critters living amongst us than to get out in their habitat and observe. I attribute the respect for nature and knowledge I’ve gained to spending countless hours hunting and fishing these West Virginia mountains. I acquired this appreciation at an early age from squirrel hunting and catching bluegills thanks to my Dad who found the time to take me.
And speaking of bluegills, they are the perfect fish species for kids. They’ll hit almost anything you throw at them and can provide plenty of action to keep the youngsters interested. They are also a great fish species to target with a fly rod. Tie on a popper and cast it out, give it a couple twitches, and usually that’s all it takes for a bluegill to explode on your offering.
I bet several of you fellow outdoorsmen and women have a first fish picture of a bluegill somewhere in the old photo album. Because back then we used film and put the pictures in photo albums instead of simply downloading them on a computer, which is a lot more convenient if I do say so myself. No more trips to the store and no more waiting on the pictures to get developed. I guess some advancement in technology hasn’t been all bad.
I have fond memories of spending summer evenings fishing a pond that was close to my grandparents’ house at the time. There were some huge bass in there and every once in awhile you’d hook into one. It’s always fun and interesting fishing ponds because you never know what might be lurking in the murky depths. Hook into a big ole catfish and it feels like fighting a whale to a kid, especially on those snoopy and Barbie fishing poles. They still make those don’t they?
This summer make the time to take a kid fishing. It’s such a relaxing pastime and like I said earlier, it’s something you can do as long as you live regardless of your age. We are fortunate to live in such a great state with countless fishing opportunities all around. Tucker County is full of them. I know I’ve been enjoying every minute teaching my daughter the finer things in life. Take care and tight lines until next time.