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The Basics of Fishing

Fresh water fishing is the sport of catching fish in rivers, lakes and streams. Fishing is one of the basic activities inherent in man's psyche. It is at our very core, to be hunters and fishermen. Millions of people enjoy fishing for sport, even more do it for a living, and there are those that do it to provide their subsistence. Whatever the reasons, fishing is a sport that can be enjoyed by all. It does not require certain physical skills or an Einstein-like mind. It is basic and that is why so many people enjoy it.

Fishing may be a God given pleasure but the state thinks you should pay for it. Fortunately, most states charge but a small penitence to participate, so by all means pays the piper. To start, check your states fishing license requirements to see if a license is required to fish. If so, you need to purchase one check with your local sporting goods store.

While you are there, you can purchase the proper equipment you will need. As a beginner, it doesn't make sense to go overboard on your spending. Purchase the basics---things you will need to be successful without spending your mortgage money. Get a fishing rod and reel, fishing line, hooks, weights, a bobber to keep your line afloat, fishing lures and a net to bring in your catch. You may also consider polarizing sunglasses. These will help to reduce glare on the water and allow you the see what is in the water more clearly. If you are unsure as to what you need, ask for help, but remember to keep to a budget. Take the time to ask how to use the equipment. You can use artificial lures for bait or you can use the worms from your back yard. If you don't know where to fish, ask about local hot spots. You can also check your states fishing regulations for locations around your state. As you become a better fisherman, you may choose to upgrade your equipment (tackle). As a beginner, it is important to keep things simple.

To be safe always go fishing with a buddy. In an emergency, they can go for help or assist. The only bad part about fishing with a buddy is that they usually won't back up the story about "the one that got away".

Before you go, take some time to practice casting and to become familiar with your rod and reel. Your back yard is a great place to start. Mark off an area with a rope or garden hose and use it as your guide to aim your cast. Practice your movements to find a method that works for you.

Start your fishing in shallow waters. Look for shaded or rocky areas where the water is deeper to aim your cast. This is where fish are more likely to hide. You are looking for practice first. You can venture into deeper waters as you skill level increases. Remember to cast with your wrist, not your arm. Remember that fishing hooks are very sharp. Handle them with care look around before you cast and stay clear of other people to avoid hurting them with your hook. When you go fishing for real, remember to cast your line ahead of the fish and make your bait land with as little splash as possible. A fish sees well at close proximity but cannot see behind itself. If you find you casts are going all over the place, consider moving closer to the water to gain accuracy. Watch the bobber for movement. When fish grab the bait, the bobber will be pulled under the water by the fish. When you get a fish on the line, remain calm. Keep your line tight and slowly begin to reel in your catch. Place your net near the water and use the net to bring the fish out of the water. Carefully remove the hook from the fish. If your fish is undersize (as note in your states regulation book), let it go back into the water quickly.

If you do not plan to eat your fish, do not waste it. Put it back into the water. This release of the fish will provide future fishermen with the thrill of the catch. Enjoy!