In last month’s column I wrote about finding patience. Next up, let’s tackle another important rule in fishing: confidence. Fish are not the smartest creatures on earth, however, the elusive fish can prove persnickety, which is why you need to bring an equal amount of deception to match its choosy nature. My greatest lessons in fishing included being confident, quiet and crafty.
Often I catch no fish, which is known as being “skunked.” And from me to you, I’ve stunk it up plenty of times, yet my confidence keeps me coming back for more. Just several weeks ago, I pitched a live shrimp into the water and a fish came right up to it. I held my breath and watched it look at my bait, snobbishly turn its head and swim away. This was discouraging, but I had the mindset that I would catch the fish no matter how long it took.
I went back to the same spot a day later using the same gear and did hook the fish. (At least I’d like to think it was the same one.) I caught it because of my crafty and calm nature.
Just as important to note is noise. Too many times I’ve found myself using “sh” as a nice white noise to hush a crowd, but bangs and clunks can shut a fishery down just as fast. Sound travels about four times faster underwater, so loud engine revs, splashing of anchors and just plain ignorance to a skittish animal will produce a no-strike environment. The trick is to quietly position yourself so that the fish have settled in nicely, and you’re making a cast with confidence. Eventually, the fish’s appetite will override any undue noises you’ve made.
Next month, we’ll start our excursion by choosing the proper equipment, and we’ll focus on one of the most crucial pieces: the fishing rod.
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