Another installment in the ongoing quest to identify and bust common angling myths.
Debunking the endless litany of angling-related myths is not only entertaining, it actually makes me examine some of my closest held assumptions with a critical eye. I never cease to be amazed by some of the outlandish restraints anglers (including me) impose on themselves because they have a blind adherence to some myth that drives them to not do one thing or another because it will surely lead to more fish or less fish.
Honestly, we all have a set of tenets that guide our behavior and undoubtedly some of them are warped if not outright incorrect. The classic example is that our ancestors believed that the world was flat. That little bit of lunacy should be enough for all of us to periodically pull back and examine our frame of reference in angling (and likely all things for that matter) with a fresh beginner’s eye. This simple practice of questioning your assumptions may not only break some misguided patterns, it likely will put you on more fish.
I will post three of my recent favorite myths through the coming weeks.
MYTH – “That boat…jet ski…kayak…jack wagon…ruined my wade.”
If you fish, you have assuredly had a perfectly approached, going-to-catch-em fishing spot smoked by a careless or mindless angler shredding down a shoreline, reef or wherever you think the fish are. With the recent increases in angler activity through many coastal waters, it is happening with much greater regularity. From shallow water boats on flats to outfitted jet skis in back lakes, it is a road-rage-inducing moment when your wade or drift gets disrupted by another angler, but I often think that perceived disruption is often less than more and might even err on the side of being a myth.
Undoubtedly, a boat tearing across a shallow reef or flat can disrupt a bite and even shuffle fish, but I am amazed how many times, if I settle down and keep my focus on the pattern I was trying to fish, the fish seem to settle down as well. With crowded bays everywhere, it is almost unavoidable that you are going to get someone who interferes with your fishing. Next time this happens, take a moment to practice your best anger management and just keep focused on the fish. If you do that, you may find your pattern re-emerges or simply shifts, and the clown who ran you over just broke a myth for you.