July 13, 2009
by: jovial_cynic

Me, my mom, and my daughters out on Hicks Lake

I recently got a good deal on little 11' fishing boat, which came with a little 3.3HP motor. I've always wanted a tiny boat - just something I can take out on a local lake and troll around on. When I found this on craigslist, I figured it would be perfect. Shortly after I picked it up, I threw it onto my little flat bed trailer, strapped it down with my ratcheting tie-downs, and drove out to the lake. Unfortunately, I didn't give much thought to how much tension the sides of the boat could take as I tied it down, and about a block away from the lake, the tie-down going from port to starboard (that's left-to-right for you non-boat people) collapsed the side of the boat. The break looked like a shark had taken a bite out of the boat... so I re-did the tie-downs (only tying down the front and back), drove the boat back home. After a bit of jig-saw action, a sheet of aluminum, some nuts and bolts, and some roofing tar, I got it patched up. As you can see in the photo, even with the boat full, the patch is well above the water line.

Anyhow, I never pictured myself to be a fishing kind of guy, chiefly because I can't catch fish (I lack both the patience and the know-how), but also because I've always associated fishing with game fishing, which makes no sense to me. It's similar to my inability to understand people who hunt for trophies. I don't get putting a deer head on a wall. I just want to catch food. I want to go to a lake and bring home dinner for the family, and know that it was done with little more than a fishing pole and a worm.

I enjoy sitting out on the boat, but I think it's a little large for a personal fishing vessel. This one is big enough for my entire family, but I have a larger motor boat (currently not running well, but I'll get that squared away) for family outings. I'd like a tiny boat - something just big enough for me and my fishing gear - something like a mouseboat, only a little larger and with a place to stick a motor.

So... my plan is to sell this 11' boat and use the money to buy the materials necessary to build a smaller boat. I should be able to build a mouseboat for under $30, provided I find some cheap glue, sealant, and paint. Hopefully this little project doesn't leave me too wet.


Luke said:
Game fishing is a lot of fun. If you take the time to learn how to fish you'll learn that it's really a science. What time of day it is, what the temperature of the water is and where the thermocline is in that water, what kind of insects are hatching and which ones the fish are eating, what kinds of lures work for what kind of fish, the kinds of fish in the lake, etc...

After you factor in all those (and more) variables you choose a lure or bait and hope it works. When you're able to land a lunker it's sweet. Mainly it's a challenge thing. Catching some fish is a easy as a hook in the water. Other fish are smarter and take much more 'luring' if you will.

Kind of like basketball. No eating involved but a lot of skill.

July 14, 2009

jovial_cynic said:
Luke -

I get the whole science piece - I like that aspect. But I think there's a lot of competitive machismo nonsense built into sport fishing or sport hunting. It's all big-johnson talk in the end, which is strange, awkward, and screams inadequacy. At least, that's what I've witnessed.

:: shrug ::

I just want to catch food.

July 14, 2009

Luke said:
What you call machismo I call camraderie. Swappin true fish stories or being there to witness someone's big haul is exciting any way you look at it. But the food aspect is always good too ;-)
July 14, 2009

jovial_cynic said:
Luke -

Well, what you are calling comraderie, I think I also call comraderie. I think we're talking about different things. I think that it would be fun to go fishing with some buddies and shoot for a personal best. And then eat that personal best.

However, I was referring to the whole trophy-head mentality that some gamesmen get into, where it seems like the aim is to be the guy with the biggest ::ahem:: and stick it out there for everybody to see. I honestly can't think of anything more childish. Except maybe being the guy that stares at that ::ahem:: in envy.

July 15, 2009

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