As a father of 3, I find it at times challenging in this day and age to get my kids out fishing. In the era of technology, and my kids are loving it, it also takes away from the time kid’s spend outdoors. Personally, I feel there is a place for it, but at the end of the day there has to be a balance. Same goes for taking my kids fishing, they don’t have to go if they don’t want to….but if they do, no way I’m leaving them at home.
Here are a few tips I have for getting kids out fishing.
- Keep it short, keep it fun. My daughter can fish for 5 to 6 hours, my boys…about half. Either way, when they say they’re bored I typically take them in. After all, I don’t want them to think fishing is boring.
- Spoil them. Okay, so this may sound weird but I let my kids have their choice of candy on the boat. It’s apart of the whole experience to have their favorite snack on the boat, and my kids have come used to that great feeling when they go fishing.
- Keep them on fish. Seems easy right??? Wrong. For whatever reason, when I take my kids out blind it doesn’t often end the way I’d like. When I’m on fish, and fishing is hot…that’s usually when I encourage my kids to get out. After all, with short attention spans I try to keep them occupied, well….with fish! I’ve had times where hours fly by and they’re spending most of it reeling in fish. Those days are rarely filled with complaints.
- Try to keep them in their comfort level. While my kids are very young in age, their skill level varies as they get older. For example, taking a 6 year old jig fishing is asking A LOT out of the child. While some are better then others, they can get frustrated if they’re not catching. With that being said, I take my kids trolling a lot. That way, all they have to worry about is reeling in the fish. With 2-3 treble hooks it’s hard for the fish to come off.
- Keep them covered in sunscreen. Sounds simple right? Well, if your kids are like mine you’ll find it necessary to apply often to avoid burning. Nothing ruins a day more then 3 crying, burnt kids.
I try to keep my kids involved in the outdoors as much as I can. Recently, my 9-year-old daughter and I fished a walleye tournament together. She’s competitive, and so am I, and together we set out as a team. This is something I recommend all father’s to try, whether you fish tournaments or not. She raved about the morning take off, catching her fish, and the whole weigh-in process. It was an experience she won’t soon forget, and we’re already planning our next one.
So with all that being said, try various methods for taking your kids fishing. I hope my tips can help you get your kids more involved in fishing.
Tight lines everyone…