Cast a Line to Try Something New in National Parks

The following blog is an excerpt from Cast a Line to Try Something New in National Parks by the National Park Foundation.

Fishing Passport National Parks
(Edgar Woo photo)

It’s not often that we get the chance to stand still in one place, with our feet planted on the ground – or dangling from a pier – free from the pull of our phones, email, or alarms reminding us of meetings or appointments.

Fishing in national parks provides an escape from the frenzy of daily life, a chance to relax, breathe in the fresh air, gaze upon the water, and marvel at the great outdoors. It’s an opportunity to commune with nature, as well as the loved ones you’re lucky enough to spend the day with; whether it be a friend, grandparent, child, cousin, sister, niece, nephew, or maybe even just yourself.

Most anglers will tell you that the appeal of fishing has little to do with the number of fish caught, and more about the memories that are forged during a day out on the water. For many, fishing is a skill learned from their parents or grandparents, and it’s something they look forward to teaching their children. But it’s more than a sport – it’s a tradition that bonds generations and becomes embedded into the fabric of a family.

For those who are just being introduced to the world of fishing, it can seem intimidating. If you’re someone who – until now – has only seen fishing on your TV or movie screen, read this fishing primer for the confidence and know-how to take up the sport in your national parks.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

Fishing Program National Parks Cast a line
(Edgar Woo photo)

What are those things called again? If you’re vaguely familiar with fishing, but need some help with the lingo, look no further. Here are some basic fishing terms to know:

  • Tackle box: an angler’s toolbox. We suggest starting with the basics on this list and building from there.
  • Rod and Reel: a device that allows you to wind and cast your line into the water. Any sporting goods or fishing store will have a starter set.
  • At the end of the line is a hook, with bait or lure attached to attract the fish. A rule of thumb: it’s important not to use live bait and to use clean gear, as it reduces the risk of introducing non-native or invasive species into the park.
  • Sinkers are also attached to the end of the line, weighing the hook down to the fishes’ eyeline under the water. The line should also have a bobber (sometimes called a float or cork) attached, which floats to the surface to let you know when a fish has taken the bait.
  • Needle-nose pliers will help you to remove the hook from the fish once you’ve made your catch.

Continue reading Cast a Line to Try Something New in National Parks by the National Park Foundation here.

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