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Poll: What stage are you at (for the most part)?

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  1. #21

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    Option 5 is my choice - fish when I can fish how I want to fish. Stages 1-4.... I'm past these now. Numbers, size, difficulty are almost a non-criteria to me now. These creatures go through a lot in their life and I'm happy to just get out and connect with them for a brief time. And the difficulty level is on me by choice as I have chosen "traditional" or more difficult or complex angling methods vs targeting the most difficult fish.


    “If I fished only to capture fish, my fishing trips would have ended long ago.”
    ~Zane Grey

    " . . . shouldn't a man stand on his own two feet and catch his own steelhead? Maybe put out some effort and find his own fish just for the fun of it?"
    ~Syd Glasso

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  3. #22

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    I am far from the Stage 5: The Just being out there. Maybe I'll never will...who knows. For me fishing is catching....the biggest of the day. If the whole stretch or school is in the same size, then I'll settle with the number.
    But if they are in different sizes, I'll go for the biggest one.
    I don't always catch fish; but when I do I scream like a little girl.

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  5. #23

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    Quote Originally Posted by runningfish View Post

    I am far from the Stage 5: The Just being out there. Maybe I'll never will...who knows. For me fishing is catching....the biggest of the day. If the whole stretch or school is in the same size, then I'll settle with the number.
    But if they are in different sizes, I'll go for the biggest one.
    I am fully with you here. There is no stage 5... stage 5 is bird watching, or hiking, or whatever. When I go fishing, the primary goal is to catch fish.

    Just being there? Yes, that's nice, but I am already there... may as well catch something.

    "We fish for pleasure; I for mine, you for yours." -James Leisenring

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  7. Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    3 and 4.

    And that's why you will find me throwing mice every possible chance I get. Maybe it should be another category.

    Mouse addiction.
    All Means All

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  9. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Southeastern Ontario, Canada (armpit of the trout fishing universe)

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    I think theres definitely a stage 5. Its the overall experience thats important,not numbers or size.

    For myself, even if you garunteed me id catch a 40 lb salmon during the run off lake Ontario id politely decline. I have no desire to fish in such close proximaty to others. Id rather be fishing for little trout on a stream where I never see anyone.

    Im out there for the joy of simply being out there while trying to catch a fish. Lack of fish doesnt mean it want a succesful fishing trip.

    Sent from my E6853 using Tapatalk

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  11. Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    As someone who fished maybe 8 hours a week from May-October and caught a staggeringly, embarrassingly low number of fish I just enjoy fishing.

    I started fly fishing in September and havnt been incredibly lucky so far. I caught some bluegill one morning on my first time with a fly rod. Literally the next day I was pike fishing with my buddy. Had 3 takes on the float trip. The first spit the hook (not sure it was ever actually in his mouth). The 2nd fish I hooked, and I **** you not, he rammed himself into a log headfirst. As he crashed into the log the hook drove into the wood deep enough and he ripped his cheek out. I got the fly back with a nice little piece of skin... The 3rd pike that day was the biggest we saw. Probably an honest 38'' Hooked him really well, was fighting him, and he wrapped around a sunken tree. Like an idiot I got all giddy at the prospect of my first big fish on a fly rod, and tried fighting him and the tree... The leader/tippet finally snapped and I lost him... I walked away after 9 hours of fishing, and $250 to the guide with literally nothing to show. I didnt catch a single damn fish. This was still one of the absolute best days of fishing Ive ever had. I got to spend all day with a good friend, got fairly comfortable with a fly rod, and just really enjoyed the float down the river.

    The fishing in NJ/Philly sucked this summer. Half the lakes/ponds I go to were covered in algae, or were too weedy to get anything through (I'm weird and dont like jigging/flipping/etc I like "power fishing" so thats 95% of what I do) but I still went 2-3 times a week after work. It helps keep you sane. I had just ended a very serious relationship, and found myself with a lot of time that I hadn't had before. So I wound up working out more, and re-discovering fishing. Now I just really love casting and trying to get better.

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  13. #27

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    I don't think the "stages" are in the same order for all anglers.

    When I first started fly fishing, my occupation dovetailed nicely with fishing in some very idyllic fly fishing destinations so catching the "difficult" species didn't prove as challenging as they might for someone that didn't have frequent access. As such, the glamour species happened pretty early on for me and I don't really need or want to spend a lot of of time on the pointy end of a skiff chasing permit or in airplane seats getting to the Indian Ocean for trevally anymore. Been there, did it, got the skin cancer to prove it.

    When the light is good, I'd much rather photograph other people fishing than actually fish myself. I fish when the light is lousy, the rest of the time I'm changing lenses

  14. #28

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    I fish because I need to fish. I fish because sometimes I need an excuse to get out on the water. I fish because I'm fascinated by fish... I could go on forever, and never really understand why I need to fish, only THAT I need to fish. For me, what we're calling "the 4 stages" are only ways to relate my experience to someone who asked of my trip, "how'd you do". So I think these stages become a driving force in how we fish because its what we see on TV, or hear at the boat ramp, because that's easier for people to understand. It's impressive to see a big fish, or entertaining to have a constant action, and interesting to see an exotic species, but really, if you say "wanna go fishing" and its the wrong time of year, or they're not biting and we probably won't catch anything, I'm still going to say "sure, what time?" Don't get me wrong, I'd rather "catch" than "fish", but I'd rather fish than most anything else. That being said, it's still an awesome feeling when you watch that monster swim away, and your hands and knees are shaking from adrenaline.

    So I guess to answer the question, I spend the most time in stage 3, but I could be at any of the 4 stages at any given time: whichever opportunity exists, including stage 1. There's always something you haven't tried yet.

  15. #29
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Northwest Territories

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    If I end up catching a fish, I want it to be a "difficult" fish--that's mostly what I target these days. Since I've gotten into steelhead, and just spent a week in Belize going after bones in some of the hardest conditions I've ever fished, just catching one "difficult" fish is all I need most days. Of course, I'll never complain when I get any sort of fish on the end of my line.

    However, like so many of you, I opt for a stage 5: just getting out to fish. I think we often underestimate this and get too focused on catching something. As I always say, there's reason we call it fishing and not catching. And as Thoreau said, men go fishing all of their lives without knowing it is not fish that they are after.


  16. #30

    Default Re: Four Stages of Angling

    Option # 5 here

    I was going fly fishing until my wife suggested it, now I can't tell who is outsmarting who!

    Being "one with nature" requires a knowledge of what animals are living nearby and a weapon of sufficient magnitude to give you at minimum an equal chance of survival. No one has an invisible aura that animals can detect and sense your good intentions.

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