What’s better than a boat, a body of water, your favorite beverage and a fishing rod and reel in hand?
As summer approaches and the days become longer, sitting out on the lake tossing a line into the water with a fishing buddy is about as good as it gets in my book.
I’ve been doing a lot of that, lately.
Some of my earliest memories involve a fishing pole in my hand. Growing up in parts of Texas and Florida on both the Gulf and Atlantic coasts afforded me the opportunity to fish in rivers, lakes, canals and my favorite – the ocean.
We always had some type of a boat – nothing fancy by any stretch, but big enough to travel quite a ways out. Typically, we’d make a weekend out of it, leaving Friday after school and work and then finding the campground to set up shop.
Sometimes we’d camp on a random island in what seemed like the middle of nowhere. For a young boy, it was always an amazing adventure.
Though I’ve gigged flounder, night-fished for blacktip sharks and used trot lines to catch catfish, my all-time favorite species of fish to hunt, without a doubt, is largemouth bass.
Now that I’ve lived in the Midwest in my later years, where bass fishing is available in nearly any close body of water, I’m proud to say that I’ve had a case of bass fever that I’ll never be cured of.
Even better, I recently acquired a john boat with a few added luxuries, like cup holders, to make my bass fishing expeditions that much more enjoyable.
Some people ask if I keep the fish I catch and the answer, mostly, is no. Unless I’m specifically fishing to catch a bulk amount for say, a fish fry, I’m typically all about the catch-and-release.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against keeping your catch, as that’s obviously the fundamental reason people began fishing in the first place – for food.
Bass fishing is a bit different. The bass fishing culture encourages catch-and-release, as the larger bass one catches tend to be breeding females that help keep the species alive.
Nothing in this world pleases me more than reeling in a big bass, snapping a quick picture if it’s large enough to brag about, and letting it go back home.
Any bass fisherman will tell you exactly the same. It’s just magical.
Some people do puzzles, some work in the garden and some people do yoga to relax and unwind from a fast-paced world.
I fish. It’s my drug of choice.