all days) is one to reflect on the past year and plan for the future. Although I like making a few resolutions here
and there, the most important aspect of New Year’s Day (besides the bowl games)
is to make solid plans to fish.
Allow me to
As I have
discovered reading your emails and speaking to many of you face-to-face, you
don’t really “get” or “take” the opportunity to fish as much as you would
prefer. Certain of my columns may
“tickle” a specific memory of fishing trips past or maybe even “remind” you how
much you enjoy getting out in Nature and feeling the tug of a fish on the end
of your line, but for myriad reasons those “feelings” don’t translate into
actual fishing trips.
Most People Don’t Fish as Often as They Would Like
Take comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Most people, including members of my own
family, don’t fish as often as they would like. The day after Christmas (for
example) I decided to give a couple of the inlets to Utah Lake a try for white
bass. In the early winter, most creeks,
streams, and rivers flowing into the lake attract white bass by the
thousands. They ambush their prey (small
minnows, crawdads, and insects) by hiding behind moss beds, wood structure,
rocks or even drops offs in the mud made by current.
My first thoughts were to call my two sons who live close by
to see if they (and several of our grandchildren) would like to join me in my
little quest for some scrappy and eager white bass. When I reached my son, Mark, he explained
that he and his family were on their way to Las Vegas for a couple of
days. Undaunted (although disappointed)
I called my oldest son, Don Jr. to see if he and at least his seven-year-old
son would like to get in on the action.
“I’m sorry, Dad,” he said, “I really can’t go fishing today.”
So, I grabbed my gear, loaded my little truck and went
fishing without them. And, of course, the white bass practically jumped on my
lures (tiny white and green tube jigs) and I literally caught and released over
100 white bass in a little over an hour of some of the easiest fishing I had
done in 2018.
[By the way, if I were you, I would give any of the inlets to
Utah Lake a try (even today) using white, black, chartreuse or light green
Gitzits on 1/8-ounce jig heads for some of the best white bass action of the
year. You will feel like you’re cheating by fishing an ice-free stream when the
rest of the fishing world are drilling holes and trying to stay warm.]
The previous example is the exact reason I plan ahead for
fishing in the coming year. There is
nothing I like more than to see my children and their children catch fish. And, knowing that they really do LOVE to fish
it pains me to realize that their lives don’t mesh with mine and more times
than not, I find myself struggling to find a fishing companion.
Plan Ahead to Fish More
Today, I will take a calendar and look at each month, write
down the specific trips already planned, and then try to plan several weekends
for “family” fishing which I will then share with the entire group. We will end up with some fluid plans on paper
that can be tweaked or changed depending on schedules and time off, but we will
be a lot closer to several great trips in 2019 BEFORE life catches up with us.
The Boulder Mountains, Yellowstone National Park, Flaming
Gorge, Lake Powell, Strawberry, Starvation, and Sand Hollow will all make that
list, and even if we are only able to actually go to half of those venues, 2019
will be a wonderful family fishing success.
New Year’s Day is a great time to “resolve” to fish more, and
actually writing down times and dates, and then sharing your tentative schedule
with those with whom you plan to fish, will put you on the right path to a
great “New Year” of fantastic fishing.