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Family Fishing and Kayaking Part One
Family fishing is a year round activity. A change of mindset is important to minimize conflict and maximize fun. I stress during “take a kid fishing” seminars that it is critical to not turn a fun trip into a fishing contest pitting one against the other or mom or dad competing against the kids.

A few pointers on how to get your family started and keep them fishing through the years:
Don’t start family members out with cast off junk that isn’t fit for you to use any more. The same frustration we feel using substandard “stuff” translates to someone else sitting and watching while you try to fix old reels, retie bad line or untangle a mess of lures, line and malfunctioning equipment. This equals ZERO fun for everyone.

With the proper instruction young or novice anglers will appreciate their new equipment and take of the same. A sense of responsibility is a good thing to teach with rods and tackle. Let’s talk tackle. A small tackle box should be loaded with the following items: Pliers, a good set of needle nose pliers to attach lead spilt shot weights and unhook fish are a necessity; it also keeps someone out of your box hunting your own pliers. A small clippers for removing excess line after tying a knot is also needed.

Fishing equipment has come a long way. There are rods and reels to accommodate every fisherman and type of fishing. For beginners spincating outfits are simple and inexpensive. For those with a little more experience or with adequate coordination open face-spinning reels attached to a five foot medium action rod are a good choice. Lighter lures and longer casts are the reward for the use of these outfits.

The introduction to the kayak should take place well before the excitement of fishing is added to the mix. Some off the water instruction pays big dividends. Paddling, casting and fishing all become part of the total experience. Lifejackets that fit properly are mandatory. Safety and responsibility are lessons that come from the family fishing scenario. Other activities, lunch, breaks from the action and normal fishing related functions are all part of the adventure. Part two coming soon. I’ll be Tennessean Ya’