Fishing for Lifelong Memories
April 25th, 2018 by Curtis Condon

Fishing memories may last a lifetime, but it doesn’t hurt to take a photograph or two as well. Photos help stimulate recall in later years, and make it easier to share fishing experiences with family and friends.
© iStock/Willard

Most people have vivid memories of their first fishing trip. I remember mine, even its first moments: up before dawn, a cold truck cab, and the acrid smell of a struck match and a lit Camel filling the cab as we waited for the engine to warm up before heading to the lake.

I hated cigarettes, but I loved fishing with Dad. I enjoyed the one-on-one time with him.

That first trip—and the many others that followed—created memories I can share and enjoy for a lifetime.

Following are seven tips for creating and sharing the same kind of memories with your own family and friends.

  • Keep the purpose of the trip in perspective. Fishing is always about catching fish, but when first-timers come along, the focus should be on them, on spending quality time together and the experience itself.
  • Stay in the comfort zone. Find ways to alleviate or minimize the discomforts of cold, heat, rain or tedium. For example, pick a fair-weather day for the outing, and ensure everyone is wearing clothing to match the weather.
  • Bet on a sure thing. Go where you know the fish are biting. Getting skunked doesn’t exactly create the kind of first-time memories people are looking for.
  • Bring along a variety of snacks. Dad always packed cheese and kipper snacks. It’s a good thing I liked cheese.
  • Take lots of photos.
  • Engage in show and tell. Be prepared to give newbies a crash course in basic fishing. Be patient. Assume they know little or nothing about it.
  • Allow first-timers to do things for themselves. Resist the urge to do everything for them. After initial instruction, help only when asked or as needed.

Bright Colors Make Fish See Red in the Wet Season
Heavy rain and runoff make lakes and rivers murkier this time of year than during drier months. Use bright colors for these water conditions. Dark colors work well, too. The best murky-water colors tend to be those that cut through the haze and attract attention, such as flashy silvers, golds, coppers and yellows.

Cool Under Pressure
The wild fluctuations in temperatures this time of year mean bike tire pressure will fluctuate significantly. To avoid riding with under- or over-inflated tires, check tire pressure before every ride. You should be doing that anyway, any time of year.

What’s Special This Month?
May is the commemoration for both National Bike and National Barbecue months.

National Wildflower Week is celebrated the first week.
Other notable days:

  • May 12, International Migratory Bird Day.
  • May 16, Love a Tree Day.
  • May 18, National Bike to Work Day.

Got a Tip or a Whopper?
Send us your favorite outdoor tip, photo or story. If selected for publication, we will send you $25 for one-time use. Tell us the story behind the picture, and remember to identify people and pets. Email your submission to moc.stnerrucadirolfnull@ofni.

Many of Curtis Condon’s fondest memories involve outdoor adventures with friends and family, whether fishing with old school buddies, backpacking in the mountains of the Northwest with his sons, or bird watching along the Gulf Coast with his wife. He feels fortunate having the opportunity to write about the outdoors and other subjects for more than 30 years.