It’s summer. Picture yourself sitting in a boat as it gently drifts along the surface of a lake. You are basking in the warm sunlight that streams past the brim of your hat onto your face. Birds twitter and you can hear the call of a loon in the distance. Your friend sits across from you, and while you occasionally converse, you both enjoy the peaceful silence between the conversation just as much. You’re holding a fishing pole, and have been meditatively awaiting the bite of a fish for two hours. Suddenly you feel it–you reel in the line, and find that you’ve hooked a large trout! You’ve caught your dinner, and you’ve spent the day experiencing the serene beauty of nature in the process.
Fishing is among the most widespread and beloved outdoor sports. That’s no surprise when you consider all of its positive qualities. It’s relaxing, exciting, and practical–you often end up with a delicious meal for your efforts! In addition, many people are disconnected from their food production, and this activity allows them to get back in touch with that integral part of life in a beautiful natural environment. In the United States alone, 55 million people took one or more fishing trips in 2013, and they spend a total of 41.77 billion dollars on fishing [statista.com]. As they say, money talks, and that’s a lot of money!
Nor is fishing limited to older people. While older people make up the majority of participants, young people also fish, and it’s a great confidence booster for kids to accomplish something as useful as catching their own food. In fact, over ten million kids in the United States fished in 2013 [statista.com]. That certainly doesn’t sound like a sport that’s likely to go out of style any time soon. People will always need to eat, and many will derive pleasure from providing for themselves. Self-sufficiency is fulfilling. Natural beauty is a proven stress reducer; it heals our bodies, minds and souls.
Fishermen use a variety of tools and equipment (known as “tackle”). While you can catch fish with nothing more than a fishing rod and some bait, there are also tools that exponentially increase your success. Of great usefulness to any fisherman is a fish finder. This is a device that uses sonar (sound wave detection) to pinpoint the location of fish. The movements of detected fish are displayed on a screen. With a fish finder, the user can also get a sense of the topography of the underwater “landscape,” so to speak–thus, they become better acquainted with the body of water they’re fishing.
Reading fish finder reviews online is one of the best ways to do research before making a purchasing decision. It allows you to get a sense of which kind of fish finder is suitable for your purposes. Fish finders vary hugely in price: they can cost anywhere from less than $100, to thousands of dollars. The cheaper products offer only a rough approximation of the location of fish, while the most costly are precise enough to identify fish species (along with their location, size, and course). Factors to take into account in making your decision include performance, value (price), ease of use, and quality. Read reviews to get your fellow fishermen’s opinions on all of those factors, as well as their personal experiences with strengths and flaws of the product. The best judge of any product is, of course, the person who actually uses it on a regular basis!
Hopefully this article has inspired you to consider fishing for your next foray into the natural world.