6 Tips for Taking Your Child Fishing for the First Time
Taking your child or grandchild fishing for the first time is exciting. You have the chance to share a hobby you love with one of the most important people in your life. Use our tips to make your kid’s fishing time fun, easy and safe.
1. Give the Child Simple Equipment to Start
You need to involve your child in the fishing process to keep them engaged. Skip the suspending plugs and instead try items such as:
- Five-foot rod
- Eight- to 10-pound line
- A bobber
- A few split shots
Make sure all the gear is small enough for your young fishing partner to handle. You want them involved in the process, so get gear that fits their small hands. Always use the bobber because it makes it easier for the child to see when they have a bite.
2. Choose a Smaller Pond
While we all love the rush of catching a whopper, for a child’s first fishing experience, stick to a small pond where they can go after small fish, like crappie or bluegill. They will have an easier time pulling these in themselves, which will give them a sense of accomplishment and keep them excited about the outing. Make sure to use small hooks for the small fish you want to catch.
3. Use Live Bait
This may seem counter-intuitive — won’t a child feel squeamish about putting a worm on the hook? They might, but the most effective way to learn to fish is to use live bait. They may decide to try something different if they come out with you again.
4. Limit Your Time on the Water
Even the most enthusiastic first-time fisherman should only stay out on the water for a couple of hours at maximum. If you plan an all-day trip, the child will get bored. Kids’ attention spans just aren’t very long, and you want them to enjoy every moment of the trip so they will want to go out again. Set a time limit before you set out, so they know when they will return.
5. Make a Plan in Case You Don’t Catch Any Fish
Kids will go on your fishing trip expecting to bring home a fish. They may not understand how difficult it can be to catch one. Make sure you have a backup plan in case you don’t catch anything. You might bring a net and send them searching for minnows in the shallow end. Or you could try to capture a few tadpoles in a jar.
6. Focus on the Fun
A first fishing trip should be more about fun than anything else. You have time with a loved one to enjoy yourselves and relax. Take advantage of that by lowering expectations and just helping your child have a good time. Bring games and snacks and plenty of water, too.
Gear up for your kid’s first fishing experience by buying the right dock gear from EZ Dock. Then get out on the water and have a blast.