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Month: December 2016

Pass on the Tradition

Pass on the Tradition

Tom Keer 12/28/2016 The holidays are often a time for reflection. When I remember my 2016 fishing season I think about many other years, too. People and places come to mind as often as species caught and lost. Ultimately everything blends together, for time I […]

7 Winter Fly Fishing Destinations Worth Visiting

7 Winter Fly Fishing Destinations Worth Visiting

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How to Teach Kids to Fish… In the Cold

How to Teach Kids to Fish… In the Cold

Fishing is a great activity to teach kids. It is empowering, increases environmental awareness, and is just plain fun. There are many tips to teach kids to fish but the old rule to “always leave them wanting more” has never been more important than fishing in the cold. Extra creature comforts can help their cold fishing enjoyment.

Here are three tips for teaching kids to fish in the cold.

“Start warm, stay warm.” That old saying has helped extend many cold outings. Crank up the heater in the truck on the way. Make sure they dress in layers, including a hooded sweatshirt, extra socks, and long underwear. Shake up several of those little hand-warming packets and make sure they have in their pockets. Monitor your kids’ warmth. Keep in mind that it will take a little bit to pack up and hike back to the truck so don’t wait to leave until one of them finally says, “I’m cold.”

Sweeten the deal. For example, my son likes to grab a drive-through bacon, egg, and cheese biscuit before we hit an icy steelhead stream. He also likes that we sometimes shop for fishing tackle before or after the trip. Ice-fishing is like camping in the daytime. A tent-like ice hut or ice shanty is helpful for wind protection. Bring a thermos of hot chocolate and some snacks like jerky or sunflower seeds. With a little propane heater, even though sitting on buckets on a frozen lake, the interior can almost grow cozy.

Don’t forget the bait. There are lots of lures that work in cold water conditions. Jerkbaits will work in open water and small jigs or spoons like Al’s Goldfish are staples for trout and when fishing through ice. And although we want to teach patience, live bait is a confidence builder. It quickly lets you know if you are in the right spot. Time is of the essence when fishing with kids. And nothing keeps everyone warm more than catching fish.

When you venture out in the cold to fish with your kids, stay safe. In Pennsylvania, life jackets are not only a great idea but required by law until April 30 for anyone in a kayak, canoe, or boat under 16 feet. (Your boat registration is up to date, right?) When ice fishing, I prefer to wait until at least 5 inches of clear ice for safe support. If conditions are “iffy,” try again another day.


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Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb

Andy Whitcomb is a columnist, outdoor humorist, and stressed-out Dad. He says there are “people who fish”… and there are “fishermen”.  One of the few things he knows is that he is a “fisherman”…  To the point it could be classified as borderline illness.  Sharing this obsession is rewarding, therapeutic. He likes to encourage people to “stop and smell the crappie.”  Enjoys catching fish, but gets a greater thrill out of helping someone else hook up.

Born in Florida, but raised on the banks of Oklahoma farm ponds. Now relocated to western Pennsylvania. He has fished, worked, lived all around the US.  He has a B.S. in Zoology from Oklahoma State as well…

And he met his wife while electrofishing. He has been contributing weekly to www.takemefishing.org since 2011.   

What is Ice Fishing anyway?

What is Ice Fishing anyway?

Tom Keer 12/21/2016 To many anglers’ delight, the recent weather brought snow and freezing temperatures across the Northern part of our country.  From Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine, ice fishermen sharpened auger blades, lubed reels on jigging rods and on tip ups, and headed out […]

Local Fishing Knowledge

Local Fishing Knowledge

Andy Whitcomb 12/19/2016 When I travel, I always try to tap into the local fishing knowledge. I don’t expect them to give away ALL their secrets but many anglers are glad to talk fishing and will share valuable information regarding what to use, where, and […]

Saltwater Fishing Knots You’ve Never Heard Of

Saltwater Fishing Knots You’ve Never Heard Of

There are those saltwater fishing knots that you’ve either tied hundreds of times or have at least heard of; such as the non-slip loop knot, the improved clinch knot, and the uni knot. However, there are also some saltwater knots that may not have made it onto your knot-tying radar yet. Check out these five noteworthy, but perhaps unfamiliar, saltwater fishing knots that are worth learning how to tie.

 Alberto Knot. This line-to-line connecting knot is named after legendary surfcaster Alberto Knie. Also known as the Modified Albright Knot, it is useful for tying fishing lines of different diameters, such as fluorocarbon or mono leader to braided fishing line. Learn how to tie the Alberto Knot.

•  Spider Hitch Knot. While the Spider Hitch may not be as popular as the Bimini Twist, many anglers consider it to be faster and easier to tie. Since this knot forms a double line, the Spider Hitch is a good knot to use when fishing with heavier hooks or leaders. Learn how to tie the Spider Hitch Knot.

•  Slim Beauty Knot. The Slim Beauty Knot is another one of the lesser-known fishing knots that is used for joining lines of different diameters or materials. Saltwater tarpon anglers frequently use this knot because it’s strong and fairly easy to tie. Learn how to tie the Slim Beauty Knot.

 San Diego Jam Knot. The San Diego Jam is a terminal knot that is particularly useful for securing heavy lures or jigs to your leader. Anglers off the coast of California started using this knot as a reliable way to tie on hefty tuna jigs. There are four simple steps involved in tying a San Diego Jam Knot, so it’s a fast and easy knot to learn. 

 World’s Fair Knot. Another easy-to-tie terminal tackle knot for connecting your fishing line to a swivel or lure. The World’s Fair Knot was appropriately named after being introduced at the Knoxville World’s Fair in 1982. 

Since you now have a few new saltwater fishing knots that you can use the next time you cast a line out into the ocean, don’t forget to make sure your saltwater fishing license is up-to-date. Practicing new fishing knots, fishing gear maintenance, and renewing your fishing license are all great things to do when you have some spare time this winter.


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Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit shefishes2.com or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.

Lifetime Fishing License

Lifetime Fishing License

Tom Keer 12/14/2016 We all look for unique holiday gifts, you know, the ones that cause a child’s face to light up like a football stadium on Friday night.  A rod lights up some kids, while a selection of cool lures makes others happy.  But […]

Our Magical Fishing and Boating Trip at Walt Disney World® Resort

Our Magical Fishing and Boating Trip at Walt Disney World® Resort

Bruna Carincotte 12/14/2016 In October 2016, Take Me Fishing™ hosted six bloggers and their families on a magical fishing and boating experience at Walt Disney World® Resort. The families, who came from different cities across the U.S., participated in hands-on fishing and boating activities, and […]

5 Reasons You Should Teach a Kid To Fish

5 Reasons You Should Teach a Kid To Fish

Whether you are a parent or a mentor, there are many reasons to teach a kid to fish. Some reasons are obvious, like spending time outdoors and making new memories, but there are also some not-so-obvious reasons. Don’t forget to keep these additional reasons in mind the next time you have the opportunity to take a kid fishing. 

1. When you teach a kid to fish, you are helping them unplug from technology. Mobile devices and computers have become a big part of our daily lives, but it’s important for kids to learn when to take a break from technology. You can teach kids about the mental benefits of spending time outdoors by helping them focus their eyes and attention spans on nature versus a computer screen.

2. Fishing encourages feelings of confidence and empowerment. If you grew up fishing, you probably remember reeling in your first catch like it was yesterday. Part of the reason fishing creates such vivid memories is because it encourages positive feelings of accomplishment and empowerment. Every time kids master a new fishing skill, there is another opportunity for them to gain confidence.

3. When kids go fishing, they learn more about the freshwater and saltwater eco-systems that fish inhabit. Fishing trips can be great mini biology lessons. Adults can use them to create “teachable moments” about the marine food chain and fish species identification.

4. Fishing can teach kids about the importance of conservation. When you teach a kid to fish, you can educate them about state fishing regulations, proper release techniques, and why regulations are important to follow for conservation. Encourage kids to practice proper catch and release techniques every time they go fishing.

5.Kids build lasting relationships with friends and family while fishing. If you’re an angler, you can attest first-hand to the bonding that takes place between friends or family when you take fishing trips together. The excitement of a great catch doubles when you are able to share the experience with someone you care about.

Now that you have five more reasons to teach a kid to fish, check to make sure you have a valid state fishing license before you head out on the water. Every state has different laws regarding fishing licenses. While minors can usually fish for free or get a discounted rate on a license, you will need to check the specific fishing rules for your state.

 


Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson

Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit shefishes2.com or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.

Fishing Gift Ideas that Conserve

Fishing Gift Ideas that Conserve

Andy Whitcomb 12/12/2016 This is the season for gift giving. With all of the pressure to find the gift that communicates the appropriate amount of sentiment, this can be a stressful time of the year. Here are some gift ideas that can reduce stress on […]