Best Day Ever...

SaltH20Angler

I'm not superstitious... cuz it's bad luck.
Aug 6, 2016
1,125
1,477
SoCal - Corona
Name
Christopher
Boat
I know a couple guys...
Bored at home... Decided to write a novel about my day yesterday. The launch ramps are open locally, DFG is out too, go quarantine yourself on a skiff if you can. This should probably go to the Chit-Chat section but we did catch a fish, so it's a report...



I've loved fishing as far back as I can remember. My Dad served 22 years in the Coast Guard so we moved from coastal location to coastal location about every two years when I was growing up. It was tough making friends moving to a new city, being the new kid at school, making new friends, moving to a new city... you see the pattern.

One thing we always had no matter where we moved to, was fishing. My dad was never the greatest fisherman, but boy did he get us on the water. We fished beaches, lakes, ponds, marshes, creeks, golf courses, canals and even the sewer drains a couple of times (C&R of course). Although we still fished any body of water we could find, we graduated to renting skiffs and sailboats from the Navy Bases he was stationed near and fished off of those too. Although my Dad was a Coastie, we sure found our way into some crazy predicaments. You would think a Coastie would be the best skipper/sailor, but knowing the boating rules and knowing how to operate different types of boats are 2 different things. Some of those stories make for great fishing conversations now. Looking back, we should have never been doing some of the things we did (completely unsafe), but I wouldnt change a thing if I could as we made it home safely every trip somehow.

I've always wanted to own a boat but understood they are not cheap. I've never been wealthy, well off, or even had very much extra money. My wife has medical issues so I have been the sole income since we got together 20 years ago. Although owning a boat has been a desire of mine for many many years, it was just not in the cards for me. I never wanted to be the guy that owned a boat but was too broke to use it, maintain it, repair it, etc.

Several years back I found the BD Boat Ho/Rideshare thread and things changed for the better as it relates to fishing. I met several great men who owned boats and have been fishing with them for years now. One of the biggest benefits aside from learning new fishing techniques was learning some if the basics of boat ownership. You dont know what you dont know until you start to learn, then you know... you dont know anything. I even signed up, studied for, and passed the CA Boating Safety test to get my CA Boaters Card even though I didn't own a boat. I look online at boats for sale, boats I cant afford, boats I dont have a place to store, boats that I have no business looking at.

I have a 16 year old daughter and even though she is an awesome kid she is not passionate about fishing. I've taken her fishing many times. We fished freshwater a lot initially, which can be really slow. I thought she really enjoyed fishing even though she would lose interest like any other young kid does freshwater fishing (waiting for catfish or trout to bite can be very boring at the stocked local lakes here in CA).

I started taking her on half day and 3/4 day trips when she was about 8 years old. I figured she would LOVE saltwater compared to freshwater fishing with all of the action (live bait, pelicans, egrets, seagulls, seal lions, porpoises, whales, bait barge, warm food, etc).

About 4 years ago I was planning a lil 3/4 day trip out of LB to fish Catalina and she said she would pass on going...WHAT?? I asked her why she didnt want to go and she said... "Dad, I'm not that big of a fan of fishing, I just go cuz it makes you happy" I was somewhat heartbroken because I thought that was our thing but also loved her for trying to love fishing for me. She hasnt gone fishing with me since, but we still skin dive/snorkle and spear/gather seafood. Last time we snorkled was in Mexico last fall and we got Sea Urchin for our appetizers with our steak and lobster dinner. Great memories.

Resized_20191020_165252_2800.jpg


When my daughter was 13, my wife and I found out we were going to be parents again. WTF were we thinking...we weren't, but things happen for a reason. Found out we were having a boy and I saw it as a second chance to have my kid be my best fishing buddy. This time I was going to do things different. No slow freshwater fishing, I needed to get him addicted to fishing.

Dave Hanson posted a video about taking kids fishing and while my initial thought was to disagree, I feel strongly that he was spot on. Some of the recommendations were to bring a devise (phone/tablet), target easy fish (macks), only fish for an hour. The more I thought about what he said, the more I thought he was right, especially because I did it the other way with my daughter.

When my son was 2 (he is almost 4 now) , I started seeing good signs. He wanted to play with any fishing rod he could get to. He is/was a bruiser (even at 2 years old) and my initial thought was to take it away so he wouldnt break it. This kid has a special gift for breaking stuff. I pulled out a cheap trout rod for him to play with. BTW...it is missing nearly all of its guides now and doesnt have a tip anymore. He would also LOVE to play with any jigs (grubs, swimbaits, scampis, any squid looking jigs). I would find random jigs/lures in the weirdest places in and outside of the house. He watches a lot of fishing vids on youtube with me too. Funny how he always wants the fisherman to let the fish go. He doesn't seem to get it when I tell him the fish are going to be eaten. Kind hearted kid.

About 2 months ago, I was on craigslist looking at fishing stuff and saw a post for an 11 foot aluminum skiff with a 5.5 hp 4 stroke motor for $550, obviously a scam. I replied saying I was interested and the guy responded. After speaking with him it seemed optimistically legit, so I cautiously moved ahead. A few days after initial talks, he calls me and says the trailer paperwork was not in order and it would be a couple of weeks to get that ironed out but that he was selling it to me.

In a moment of excitement, I told my son "I'm buying a boat and I'm taking you fishing". He said, lets go now, then I told him he needs to be a little bigger first. Everyday, and I mean everyday after that, he would wake up and run into my room (I work from home) and ask me "Dad, am I bigger now?" I was hoping the deal would go through so I didnt have to let my liitle buddy down. Well 2 weeks ago, I paid for and picked up the skiff. Here it is 2 minutes after i back it in my driveway. He couldn'twait to get on board.

20200314_111435.jpg


Over the past 2 weeks we've been taking this COVID-19 thing serious and have been spending a lot of time at home. It has also been raining. There was a little window of good weather yesterday so my wife and I decided taking this skiff (and my son) for the maiden voyage.

We headed for Davies Launch in LB and I although I launched boats many times as a boat ho, I was surprised that I was so anxious launching this little skiff. I think it was a combo of my wife and son being there, instead of a fishing buddy along with not really knowing if the trailer and boat were sea worthy and in full working order. We launched without issue, I motored to the dock, and got the life jacket on my son who was so excited (so was I).

Resized_20200321_135647_1678.jpg


I wanted to be safe, so instead of heading towards the harbor entrance to sabiki mackerel, we stayed near the launch ramp. I threw on a little bass jig and trolled the rocks going towards the Marine Stadium.

At first, I was holding the rod (thinking he might drop it) at the same time as steering the tiller. I got short bit first, then got a good tug. I set the hook, and lost it after allowing too much slack while trying to keep line away from the prop and steering away from the rocks the wind was blowing us towards. I knew I had to get my son bit if I was to get him addicted.

I put the rod in his hands and told him not to let go. We moved forward trolling the rocks, and after a few more minutes, he yells "Dad, it's stuck", and I know he is bent for the first time ever. I put the motor in neutral, tighten the drag, and let him reel it in by himself. I was certain he was going to drop the rod/reel overboard but took the risk anyways. Two minutes later, over the transom comes a nice litte Spottie. We both were so stoked. This was a moment I waited for...for a long time. Hopefully the first of many many trips and fish caught with my boy. He just woke up and asked if we can fish today.

Thanks for letting me share this moment with you guys/gals. I cant think of a better way to social distance. Take care, be well, and look out for others as much as you can right now.

Resized_20200321_142347_1319.jpg


Resized_20200321_142239_139.jpg
 

mike mitchell

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Jul 25, 2017
2,340
1,504
61
San Diego
Name
Michael Mitchell
Boat
20 Bertram
Good job! May want to upgrade the life jacket, and put one on yourself. Set a good example early. Don't mean to preach but kids parrot their parents.
 
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Groper

I'm not that guy.
Jun 9, 2018
108
64
92886
Name
Bill
Boat
2550 May-Craft PH
Awesome first Day.
A ski vest would be perfect, it will keep the him from getting a rash around his neck and give your son more mobility :D
Add some sunscreen and a hat Dad.
 
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bosco

Older Timer
Oct 21, 2005
254
80
Santa Barbara
Name
Ken Ross
Boat
Someone else's
Bored at home... Decided to write a novel about my day yesterday. The launch ramps are open locally, DFG is out too, go quarantine yourself on a skiff if you can. This should probably go to the Chit-Chat section but we did catch a fish, so it's a report...



I've loved fishing as far back as I can remember. My Dad served 22 years in the Coast Guard so we moved from coastal location to coastal location about every two years when I was growing up. It was tough making friends moving to a new city, being the new kid at school, making new friends, moving to a new city... you see the pattern.

One thing we always had no matter where we moved to, was fishing. My dad was never the greatest fisherman, but boy did he get us on the water. We fished beaches, lakes, ponds, marshes, creeks, golf courses, canals and even the sewer drains a couple of times (C&R of course). Although we still fished any body of water we could find, we graduated to renting skiffs and sailboats from the Navy Bases he was stationed near and fished off of those too. Although my Dad was a Coastie, we sure found our way into some crazy predicaments. You would think a Coastie would be the best skipper/sailor, but knowing the boating rules and knowing how to operate different types of boats are 2 different things. Some of those stories make for great fishing conversations now. Looking back, we should have never been doing some of the things we did (completely unsafe), but I wouldnt change a thing if I could as we made it home safely every trip somehow.

I've always wanted to own a boat but understood they are not cheap. I've never been wealthy, well off, or even had very much extra money. My wife has medical issues so I have been the sole income since we got together 20 years ago. Although owning a boat has been a desire of mine for many many years, it was just not in the cards for me. I never wanted to be the guy that owned a boat but was too broke to use it, maintain it, repair it, etc.

Several years back I found the BD Boat Ho/Rideshare thread and things changed for the better as it relates to fishing. I met several great men who owned boats and have been fishing with them for years now. One of the biggest benefits aside from learning new fishing techniques was learning some if the basics of boat ownership. You dont know what you dont know until you start to learn, then you know... you dont know anything. I even signed up, studied for, and passed the CA Boating Safety test to get my CA Boaters Card even though I didn't own a boat. I look online at boats for sale, boats I cant afford, boats I dont have a place to store, boats that I have no business looking at.

I have a 16 year old daughter and even though she is an awesome kid she is not passionate about fishing. I've taken her fishing many times. We fished freshwater a lot initially, which can be really slow. I thought she really enjoyed fishing even though she would lose interest like any other young kid does freshwater fishing (waiting for catfish or trout to bite can be very boring at the stocked local lakes here in CA).

I started taking her on half day and 3/4 day trips when she was about 8 years old. I figured she would LOVE saltwater compared to freshwater fishing with all of the action (live bait, pelicans, egrets, seagulls, seal lions, porpoises, whales, bait barge, warm food, etc).

About 4 years ago I was planning a lil 3/4 day trip out of LB to fish Catalina and she said she would pass on going...WHAT?? I asked her why she didnt want to go and she said... "Dad, I'm not that big of a fan of fishing, I just go cuz it makes you happy" I was somewhat heartbroken because I thought that was our thing but also loved her for trying to love fishing for me. She hasnt gone fishing with me since, but we still skin dive/snorkle and spear/gather seafood. Last time we snorkled was in Mexico last fall and we got Sea Urchin for our appetizers with our steak and lobster dinner. Great memories.

View attachment 1124903

When my daughter was 13, my wife and I found out we were going to be parents again. WTF were we thinking...we weren't, but things happen for a reason. Found out we were having a boy and I saw it as a second chance to have my kid be my best fishing buddy. This time I was going to do things different. No slow freshwater fishing, I needed to get him addicted to fishing.

Dave Hanson posted a video about taking kids fishing and while my initial thought was to disagree, I feel strongly that he was spot on. Some of the recommendations were to bring a devise (phone/tablet), target easy fish (macks), only fish for an hour. The more I thought about what he said, the more I thought he was right, especially because I did it the other way with my daughter.

When my son was 2 (he is almost 4 now) , I started seeing good signs. He wanted to play with any fishing rod he could get to. He is/was a bruiser (even at 2 years old) and my initial thought was to take it away so he wouldnt break it. This kid has a special gift for breaking stuff. I pulled out a cheap trout rod for him to play with. BTW...it is missing nearly all of its guides now and doesnt have a tip anymore. He would also LOVE to play with any jigs (grubs, swimbaits, scampis, any squid looking jigs). I would find random jigs/lures in the weirdest places in and outside of the house. He watches a lot of fishing vids on youtube with me too. Funny how he always wants the fisherman to let the fish go. He doesn't seem to get it when I tell him the fish are going to be eaten. Kind hearted kid.

About 2 months ago, I was on craigslist looking at fishing stuff and saw a post for an 11 foot aluminum skiff with a 5.5 hp 4 stroke motor for $550, obviously a scam. I replied saying I was interested and the guy responded. After speaking with him it seemed optimistically legit, so I cautiously moved ahead. A few days after initial talks, he calls me and says the trailer paperwork was not in order and it would be a couple of weeks to get that ironed out but that he was selling it to me.

In a moment of excitement, I told my son "I'm buying a boat and I'm taking you fishing". He said, lets go now, then I told him he needs to be a little bigger first. Everyday, and I mean everyday after that, he would wake up and run into my room (I work from home) and ask me "Dad, am I bigger now?" I was hoping the deal would go through so I didnt have to let my liitle buddy down. Well 2 weeks ago, I paid for and picked up the skiff. Here it is 2 minutes after i back it in my driveway. He couldn'twait to get on board.

View attachment 1124909

Over the past 2 weeks we've been taking this COVID-19 thing serious and have been spending a lot of time at home. It has also been raining. There was a little window of good weather yesterday so my wife and I decided taking this skiff (and my son) for the maiden voyage.

We headed for Davies Launch in LB and I although I launched boats many times as a boat ho, I was surprised that I was so anxious launching this little skiff. I think it was a combo of my wife and son being there, instead of a fishing buddy along with not really knowing if the trailer and boat were sea worthy and in full working order. We launched without issue, I motored to the dock, and got the life jacket on my son who was so excited (so was I).

View attachment 1124912

I wanted to be safe, so instead of heading towards the harbor entrance to sabiki mackerel, we stayed near the launch ramp. I threw on a little bass jig and trolled the rocks going towards the Marine Stadium.

At first, I was holding the rod (thinking he might drop it) at the same time as steering the tiller. I got short bit first, then got a good tug. I set the hook, and lost it after allowing too much slack while trying to keep line away from the prop and steering away from the rocks the wind was blowing us towards. I knew I had to get my son bit if I was to get him addicted.

I put the rod in his hands and told him not to let go. We moved forward trolling the rocks, and after a few more minutes, he yells "Dad, it's stuck", and I know he is bent for the first time ever. I put the motor in neutral, tighten the drag, and let him reel it in by himself. I was certain he was going to drop the rod/reel overboard but took the risk anyways. Two minutes later, over the transom comes a nice litte Spottie. We both were so stoked. This was a moment I waited for...for a long time. Hopefully the first of many many trips and fish caught with my boy. He just woke up and asked if we can fish today.

Thanks for letting me share this moment with you guys/gals. I cant think of a better way to social distance. Take care, be well, and look out for others as much as you can right now.

View attachment 1124918

View attachment 1124919
Congrats. Your an awesome dad and your son will always remember his first fish. You made my day ! Stay safe, bosco
 
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Tunaslam

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Apr 25, 2003
20,719
6,582
73
Diamond Bar, Ca 91765
Name
Cory Visser
Boat
N/A
Does not get any better, congrats! You have inspired me to do a write up on my son and daughter's first fishing experience, although my best day ever is a tie between my 1995 Prowler trip where I caught a Grand slam of Tuna and a private boater trip with good friend Gabe on his 22' Glacier Bay to the Double 220 in the late 1990's or early 2000's? Where four of us caught limits of Albacore, Yellowfin Tuna and Bluefin Tuna and darn near sunk the boat with 1200 pounds of tuna on board.

Hope you have many more days on the water with your son and perhaps your daughter?
 

tuner

pysgotwyr
May 24, 2006
1,347
881
Huntington Beach
Name
Steve
Boat
260 Mackinaw
Excellent report! I started my son very early too.

Dave Hansen is spot-on. It is too easy to be critical and spoil the time, always make it about them, you can fish another day.

I have a nice vest my son outgrew years ago and you are welcome to it. I live close to the Sunset Aquatic ramp.

Get him a floppy hat too!

161.JPG
 

AndyJ

Undocumented "Member"
May 8, 2008
1,141
647
Dana Point CA
Name
Andy Jakubas
Boat
1984 Cobalt DV 18.5
Totally awesome story and congrats on the start of an epic fishing journey for you and your son. Next hook him up with a fat mack or bonito on light tackle.
 
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michael e. bingham

I've posted enough I should edit this section
May 26, 2015
812
1,102
63
Name
Pura Vida
Boat
Pura Vida 30' Custom Panga
Loved you're story , I was the same way with my Daughters who are now 27 and 32 years old , I still have pictures in my office when my Daughter's were young catching spotties and then gradually learning how to fish for Marlin , Tuna , Dorado and their now Favorite Halibut , it's memories forever, you're a Great dad and teacher as was you're Dad , Congrats
 

clevel

Skipper
Jun 4, 2011
1,031
757
Laguna Niguel
Name
Cabo Jack
Boat
Cobia 261
i am glad you got your first boat without issues. My son, now 28, will not go lake fishing but he asks me when i am taking my boat out next for saltwater fishing. I enjoy my fishing moments with my son on every trip. I know you will treasure your trips with your son. Thanks for sharing a heartfelt story of yours.
 
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Pgnracr

Member
Sep 3, 2014
1,654
1,115
56
HB
Name
Jeff
Boat
Line up
Awesome. I have pix of my first trip to Avalon in a20 foot cuddycabin my 5 year old and I got tied up on a ball. Then swam ashore to save money on my part. But ended up being one of my greatest memories. That are priceless now she is 30 me 55 old BDD!! Hang in all ad the old saying goes..... “ This too shall pass!!”
 

muletrain

I've posted enough I should edit this section
Sep 9, 2006
490
333
san clemente
Name
mark
Boat
Carolina skiff for the bay / Hobie Mirage
You need to take that picture and frame it!!!!

Thank you for sharing precious moments
 
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SaltH20Angler

I'm not superstitious... cuz it's bad luck.
Aug 6, 2016
1,125
1,477
SoCal - Corona
Name
Christopher
Boat
I know a couple guys...
I have some vests for your son.
And you also
Wally, thank you so much bro, it was nice talking to you earlier this week. You are a class act not only offering up the life jackets but also inviting me to fish this weekend.

Funny thing is that the family and I have been playing it safe for almost 3 weeks. No family visits, no friend visits, havent been to the grocery store (stocked up already), and the moment you asked about fishing, I said absolutely without any thought.. I really am jonesing for the tug drug.

Im so lucky that my wife has no issues with me fishing normally, but this time she did only because we had already been isolated for 2 weeks. I know I must have sounded like the biggest flake when I backed out of fishing. Thanks for understanding and Im looking forward to fish with you as soon as things are looking less COVIDDY...LOL.
 
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