This past Saturday I went fishing on a boat for the first time. Firstly, I cannot swim! And, secondly, I was not afraid. I had an awesome time. Started out early; although there were a couple of hiccups. But nothing was going to get in my way of boat fishing! The boat was not a big plush motor boat. It was a jon boat. Yes…a jon boat. Before a couple of years ago I’d never heard of a jon boat. A jon boat is made of aluminum, wood, or fiberglass and has a flat bottom. It usually has up to three benches to sit on. They are not just for fishing but are also suitable for hunting and cruising. They are better suited for more shallow and calm waters and typically can also have a motor on it. This particular day we went motorless and just paddled.
MORE THAN JUST ABOUT THE BOAT…
I was excited about what fish I might be able to catch by not being limited to the bank. I hoped I would catch fish I’d not caught before and guess what!?! I did! I caught a Gar…a few of them. My husband has referred to Gar fish as “trash” fish in the past. But, I thought…God didn’t make any trash! I’m sure he won’t be calling it trash fish again, especially after tasting it. One of my goals in fishing is to catch as many different species of fish as I can and also to dine on them…if appropriate. I say “appropriate” because while you may not always can control what you catch, it’s not always legal to keep certain fish.
What’s a Gar? It’s much easier for me to direct you to this link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gar than to try to explain it myself. But I can describe it. Gars have elongated bodies that are heavily armored with hard and bony scales that have shiny surfaces. They have a lot of long sharp teeth that fill their elongated jaws. I’d recently heard that the meat of a gar fish is really tasty…but you have to be able to get to it. A regular ole fish scaler is a joke. Some people use power tools to break through that tough armour to get to the prized white meat. The MOST interesting thing to me about the Gar was how it went about biting and how I had to go about catching it. First of all, if the water is clear enough for you to see one it’s best to simply put the bait in front of its mouth. But only the bait…not the stopper. It seeing more than the bait (in my case Saturday…worms), it might get spooked and let go. Also, I had to bring it in gently because due to their teeth it’s nearly impossible to hook one with a regular hook. So it’s best to have a large fishing net ready to scoop it up if you can get close enough to it. Apparently, the best way to hook one is by using “entanglement bait”. For example, certain strings that it can get its teeth caught in.
I also caught a few bream, a crappie, and a catfish. While each catch was exciting it was simply a tranquil cruise on the portion of the Wolf River I was on. Because the boat is so low I was curious as to how I was going to get in…without tipping on over. LOL. You’ll get a chance to see how things went down…I made a few videos and took some pictures.
TIPS FOR BOAT FISHING AND FISHING IN GENERAL….There are a lot more to consider than what’s here, but for this particular outing these things were very important to me.
Safety first! Life jackets/vests are a must as well as bug spray, sunscreen, and sometimes a hat of some sort to block some of the sun. I also like to take bottle water and something to snack on. Protein is great! I made turkey and bologna sandwiches with cheese and cut. Wrappred them up in aluminum foil and threw them in the cooler with the cold water. And, for those who might have issues with blood sugar (not only diabetics) something sweet in case your blood sugar level happens to drop. I’m a “passer-outter” usually due to my blood pressure dropping so I definitely have to consider the heat and having cold water. And, I ALWAYS wear my “fishing boots”. No matter where I’m going to fish.