Passing it on

I was 9 years old, and had no idea what the moment would bring. It was as if time was standing still. There I stood holding my breath focusing on that small red and white bobber floating on the surface of the water. My little Thrifty bought Zebco setup in my hands, I patiently waited. There it was a subtle twitch of my line and the bobber disappeared, I’m hooked up to the first fish of my life. Something deep inside of me came alive that moment as I fought that monster fish (hand size blue gill) the rush, the peace, focus and sense of accomplishment. I was hooked for life, an angler was born that day.

That was 42 years ago and I still have the same feeling every time I have a rod in my hands. Rather it’s targeting calicos in the kelp, throwing my favorite surface irons for yellows, chasing those elusive white sea bass, or fly lining the perfect sardine at Bluefin tuna and off course my favorite, drifting for halibuts.. The feeling is always the same.

My son Noah is 9 years old now and I’ve been taking him out on the half day boat New Del Mar out of Marina Del Rey since he was 3 years old (shout out to Captain Danny Ericson and the crew). Back then it was all about playing with the bait and watching the sea lions. At 5 he hooked his first legal calico bass, and I witnessed the moment he turned into a Jr. angler. It was game on at 6 years old when deckhand Eric Ullman set him up with a dropper loop rig with a size 4 hook and a strip of squid and a 30 lb. yellowtail decided that’s what it wanted to snack on (Boy did Noah’s eyes get big when that line started screaming of his Lexa 300) when that fish hit the deck my son looked up at me with a silly grin and asked “Now can I go on a overnighter with you?”

I have the honor of not only teaching my son how to truly experience this wonderful sport and community of fishing, I get to emphasize the 3 F’s in my life Faith, Family and Fishing. From showing him how to tie the proper knots, and throwing irons and plastics to introducing him to good people other anglers, captains, deckhands and galley cooks. Most importantly showing him how to respect what we all have been given and what we experience thru fishing. Hopefully we will have countless more memories to share on the water , and someday my son Noah will be “Passing It On.”

By the way “Thank you Mr. Blue Gill” you were a game changer.

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