I don’t worship in the Church of the Bass Pro Shops. Sure, I’ve taken my kids to that midwest mecca to see the fish and the stuffed animals, but I’m not a hunter or  a fisherman. I don’t know much about lures, bait, rods or reels.  Waiting in the summer heat for the fish bite is not my idea of fun. And the five hours I spent on a boat deep-sea fishing rank among the most miserable of my life.  But I’ll try anything once just for the halibut.  I’m not saying I’ve never caught a fish–I have–but it wasn’t a thrilling or life-changing event.  So what does a heretic dad like me do when his kids want to go fishing?

Ana had the first catch of the day.

There are several seasoned anglers at my (real) church who would be happy to impart their fish stories wisdom. Yeah, I could ask them.  Of course they obliged and gave me good advice. One of them advised taking the kids where they could actually catch something–where they could have some success. This made sense to me, but where would I find such a place?  Luckily, a friend of mine mentioned a local trout farm where he sometimes takes his kids fishing.  They supply all the gear, and we could keep everything we catch.  Perfect!  We could all practice our fishing technique in a fairly controlled environment.

On a warm Saturday morning, the owners of the place outfitted us with fishing poles, a net, a basket, and all the bait we needed. We were ready!  The bait consisted of corn, hot dogs, and marshmallows?  I guess trout have a sweet tooth because the fish couldn’t resist the marshmallows, and neither could Julia.  At one point she picked a soggy marshmallow off the hook and ate it.  “It was soggy. The fish don’t want it,” she said. Each of the kids caught a trout, and everyone had a great time.  Despite my worries, I didn’t have to extract any hooks from a kid’s hand or head or leg.  Not bad for a dad who doesn’t really know what he’s doing. I may never be a fishing zealot,  but I can definitely understand its allure.

Benji was frustrated that his sisters all caught something before he did. But he eventually made a catch.


About Ben

I'm a father, a husband, an educator, and a soldier. I love the outdoors especially the mountains.

3 responses »

  1. Dad says:

    So… you’ll try anything once just for the halibut. Well, now, I guess that fishing isn’t your sole passion. Hard to fish when you are perch’d on a mountain top. But around here there are a grouper two of those that do. On a scale of 1 to 10, fishing ranks 13. For them it’s a crappie life when they can and a crappy life when they can’t. It’s part of their very bassest instincts. They can fish trout the whole day. And on Sundays they don’t sing in the choir ’cause they can’t carry a tuna, so a lot of them opt for fishing instead. I know, you just want me to clam up, but I just can’t. After all, you started this, so I’ll just flounder around trying to add to my reply. I can see it now, the rest of you will just sit around carping and grunting while I just skate around the issue. Besides, I like to eat fish, but only if they taste like chicken and don’t have that fishy odor. I smelt one once and it was bad…. Okay, okay, I’m sorry I brought all this up, but I’m just a sucker for the punny things in life.

  2. Jimmy says:

    I remember that deep sea fishing trip. Your lunch was delicious. hahaha

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