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How To Become A Better Angler

Posted: August 26th, 2015 by Bill Dance

“How can I be a better angler?”

Now, I have heard that question nearly as many times as I’ve cast a bass plug, and to understand what I am saying here, you got to know I have cast A LOT!

But it doesn’t matter, I’ve spent a lifetime teaching folks how to be better anglers. So, hey, it’s just what I do. I have always been glad to share any info that can help others enjoy it as much I have.

Can you become the best overnight? No. And honestly, that’s part of the fun of fishing…you have to fish to get better. Say it isn’t so, right?

Seriously, here are a few pointers to get you on the fast track to “better” however it is that you might define the word. Maybe better is a relative term in fishing, but I always like to think I have the opportunity to get better with every trip, and I want the same for you.

Pay close attention to what you’re doing, and what’s going on around you, while fishing. Your degree of alertness and powers of observation, are excellent indicators for the amount of concentration and confidence you have at the moment. If you persist in worrying about what happened at work, or the yard needs mowing, or what you’ve got to do next week, or something else, you might as well, load up and pick another day to fish.

Fishing should be fun, and you should be out there enjoying yourself, not worrying about something else. Your concentration should be on your fishing. Concentrating on what’s taking place around you can tip the scales toward success.

Also, be alert. You may just recognize a circumstance that can help you catch more fish. A good angler hears as well as sees, and his mind registers the impressions. If, for example, a bass nabs a baitfish on the surface behind you, your ears should convey the message, even though you concentrating on casting to a target. The trick is to train your senses to accept the common place in nature and seek out the unusual.

Let’s carry this line of thought a little farther. Perhaps shad are working on the surface. Your ears register and accept this sound as normal. But then you hear a deeper splash-like sound–an engulfing sound that signals feeding predator fish. Such should attract your immediate attention.

Good fishermen are forever able to recall the circumstances surrounding the catching of fish after fish. They seem to remember water depth, water clarity and temperature, type of lure and color, speed of retrieve, wind direction, weather, and a host of variables. They have total recall of these facts even years later. If we can interpret this uncanny ability, it boils down to concentration and observation.

Nothing good anglers do is haphazard. Each piece of the puzzle fits into place in their minds. When you train yourself to concentrate as thoroughly as they do, you’re well on your way to being at the top of the game!

Thanks and, as always, catch one for me!

Bill Dance



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