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Through my local fishing club and tournament travels I’ve been very fortunate to meet many great anglers. I really enjoy talking all things fishing with people while learning from them at the same time. While doing this I’ve made some really good friends along the way. Many anglers in the tournament scene travel together and share information, it’s no secret. It really is a hugely beneficial thing to do for many reasons. I want to talk about that because it’s not something you hear openly discussed but yet is a fairly common occurrence in our sport. Keep in mind some tournaments may have rules pertaining to the sharing of information part, so you should always read and follow the rules of each organization. However, you will find that information sharing between competitors is allowed and a normal part of our sport.
Cost and expenses are one of the many benefits anglers can take advantage of by traveling and fishing together. Tournament fishing can get expensive when you start to factor in fuel, lodging, food, entry fees, and other expenses. While things like entry fees and fishing licenses are a set expense there are areas that you can take some cost saving measures in. Riding with another angler to share fuel costs. Splitting a hotel room or campsite with another angler(s). Just those two things can add up to some big savings.

Learning about a body of water and pre-fishing is one of the biggest benefits of working together with another angler(s). We spend hours absorbing as much information as we can prior to a tournament. Sharing information you’ve each found and learned on the water is a big advantage. Two minds are always better than one. As anglers we’re each unique in how we see and approach a body of water. You can really learn a lot from each other. Approaches to seasonal patterns and fish movements is something we are all constantly trying to learn more and more about. Having another angler to bounce ideas off of is never a bad thing. By working together you can eliminate water and patterns in a shorter period of time and begin to really focus on what’s working. That’s really important on large bodies of water or when your pre-fishing time is limited.

I do most of my tournament traveling and fishing with my fellow Jackson Kayak teammate Russell Johnson. Russell is well known in the kayak fishing community and for good reason. He is an absolute hammer on the water and an even better guy off of it. I’m thankful for our friendship and the knowledge he shares. He sees things I miss or overlook and his observations on fish behavior, seasonal patterns, and fish movements are first rate. I’ve learned a lot and really enjoy fishing with him.

Even though the other anglers you meet while tournament fishing are your competition, don’t just look at them that way. Make conversation and be approachable. Build friendships and trust with your fellow competitors. You don’t have to share every little secret you have but remember information is a two way street. You’ll both benefit and who knows, you might end up making a good friend along the way.