Originally posted @ FishExplorer
For the past two years I have been a snob. I have turned my nose up at the prospect of spin fishing. I haven’t looked down on others that were spin fishing, just myself. This snobbery is self-induced, but thankfully it is now over.
The lack of time I’ve spent spin fishing for the past two years has only to do with one thing – knowledge. I wanted to get better at fly fishing and I thought the only way to do that was to put away the spinning gear. I fish high altitude lakes a lot and on a windy day it is too easy to push the long stick aside, pick up a Kastmaster or a tube jig, and toss it into the wind.
I didn’t want that to become a crutch so I vowed to fly fish exclusively,become more skilled at lake fishing and to become better at nymph fishing as well. It’s been a good two years and I feel that I have learned a lot and have probably moved up the ladder a bit – maybe one step above being mediocre.
My reason for pulling the spinning rod out of storage was a good one – my three-year-old son. He, of course, sees daddy going out to fish for the day and of course wants to come with me. He has played around with the butt section of an old fly rod with some line on it, but has never fished or done any casting.
So I went ahead and invested in a kid’s Zebco rod, picked him up from daycare and headed out to a lake across the street from where I live. We have visited this lake and park numerous times, but I had never fished it. I know from searching on here that the lake used to have huge bass in it but has since been fished out and probably has slim pickings at this point. I also read that just a couple of weeks prior to that day, they had stocked the lake with rainbow trout. Armed with this info, we headed to the pier to give it a shot.
I rigged up my son’s pole with a hook and bobber and threw some powerbait on the hook. I wasn’t expecting him to catch anything, and figured he would just want to cast and reel, cast and reel, and that’s just what he did. But, to my surprise, he was a natural! Talk about a proud father, I couldn’t believe that almost immediately, he was pressing and releasing the little button and casting the line out pretty far from the dock. I was impressed, to say the least.
After he had gotten the hang of things, it was my turn to put some line in the water. I tied on my lure and zinged it out as far as I could. Twitched the rod once and Yahtzee – fish on! A largemouth jumped out of the water and the lure came out with it. Oh well, first cast and getting some action was a good sign.
A few minutes later, the same thing happened. Then, another few minutes later, I got a bite and this time he didn’t come off. But he wasn’t jumping at all as I reeled him in with my rod almost bent in half. I was wondering what kind of fish he could be when I finally got him close enough to realize that it was a rainbow trout, and definitely not one of the stocker rainbows, this one was almost 24” and was the circumference of a football! I was in shock and couldn’t believe it. I wondered why I hadn’t tried to fish this lake sooner.
After all that happened during the hour and fifteen minutes we spent there, I realized that I don’t care what type of fishing I’m doing, I just enjoy being outdoors and catching. But sharing this experience with my three-year-old was an even greater thrill.
So the next time you spin fishermen see a fly fishermen, don’t automatically assume he is a snob. And you fly fishermen – don’t turn up your nose at the idea of spin fishing, because in the end we are the same. We are outside doing what we love to do and enjoying every minute of it, whether it’s using the long or short stick, WE fish.
A short video of my son’s first day casting:
A couple days of fishing: