Solid tips for the beginning angler or a seasoned mentor recruiting a newbie to the sport.
Story and Photography by Matt Williams
One of the really cool things about bass fishing is that just about anybody can play the game. It’s a sport that doesn’t discriminate against age, gender or skill level. In fact, anyone who is capable of casting a rod and reel can fish for bass, and you needn’t be the smartest, fastest or strongest kid in the class to become pretty darned good at it.
Bass fishing is more about hand/eye coordination and making good decisions than six-pack abs and tall grade point averages. Some of very best bass fishermen I know are overweight and probably couldn’t jog non-stop around the block if their life depended on it. Many never attended a day of college, but it didn’t stop them from earning their masters in a sport with an estimated following of 30 million anglers in North America, more than 1 million of them in Texas alone.
I was just a kid when I caught my first bass and it was my brother-in-law who christened me into the club. Rather than bore you with details I’ll just say catching that fish was a true blessing. Bass fishing eventually turned my life around in the middle of a rocky road that was headed downhill on a very dangerous slope. Looking back, I’m thankful for that.
Maybe that’s why I always jump at the opportunity to turn a newcomer on to the sport whenever I get the chance. Never mind the inevitable backlashes and occasional cast that goes astray. Screwing up is a huge part of the learning process. Mistakes can teach you a lot if you let them, no matter if you’re a beginning angler or a seasoned one facing the inherent challenges that come with recruiting a newbie to the sport.
Here are some useful tips and pointers that beginning anglers to bass fishing mentors might want to ponder: