Fishing with Kids: Tips and Tricks
Fishing with kids and taking them out for a great time is never a bad idea! However, family adventure can quickly turn into chaos if you are not aware of the right ways to carry out your planned activities.
Therefore, we are here to help you learn some amazing tips and tricks that will allow you and your kids to make the most of your day out.
Introducing outdoor adventures to your kids at an early stage allows the memorable experiences to stay with them forever.
Not only do these enjoyable experiences help build their self-confidence, but also become an opportunity for them to learn new things in life.
Like everything else, going fishing involves a right and not-so-right way. Use the following tips and tricks for fishing with kids before heading out to the water to help your kids start their angling journey in a fun and safe way:
Fishing with Kids: Tips and Tricks
Prepare in Advance
When it comes to family trips, preparation is the key! You should be well aware of the fact that unexpected events that crop up while you’re having the time of your life can put a damper on the fun.
Find a fishing spot that is close to your home or offers bathroom access.
When you are traveling with your kids, you can never be too prepared. Pack life jackets and extra fishing rods, and find ideal locations to catch fish beforehand.
Your kids will only feel at ease if you feel the same. Therefore try to make your fishing trip a relaxing yet fun-filled experience. Moreover, pack plenty of snacks as they are the way to children’s hearts!
Remember: Less Is More
When you take your kids out for fishing, remember to keep it simple and not go for trophy sized game fish.
While it’s easy to get carried away with all the excitement involved in fishing, it is best to keep the trip as basic as possible.
Larger species take more patience and skill than most children are comfortable with. Therefore, you need to stay focused on actively feeding and most populated species of fish.
Remember that this is just the beginning of a new journey for your kids, therefore, don’t go overboard. You will have plenty of chances to take them out again.
Carry your basic fishing kit with you and aim for fish such as trout and panfish, which are easier targets.
Good Things Take Time
When you’re out with your kids, you need to remember that patience is virtue. Your focus should only be on providing your kids with a life-changing and beautiful fishing experience.
You need to show them ways to enjoy the waters to the fullest and that too in a patient tone.
Oftentimes fishing might feel like a slow and frustrating process; especially when the fish aren’t biting.
However, it is your responsibility to make the trip exciting and easier for your little ones. It may seem like a bit of work at first but it will be worth it.
Try to make the most of this bonding opportunity and keep your kids interested.
You can think of some games ahead of time to help your future anglers associate fishing with enjoyment and fun.
Use Artificial Baits
Use artificial baits to make fishing more interesting for your kids. Using spinner baits doesn’t involve any complicated jigging and your kids can easily cast them out and reel them in.
Grubs or mister twisters are minnow-imitating baits that come in various sizes and colors and are especially easy for children to cast.
You can also opt for artificial frog lures or simple jig and minnow. The former keeps fish stuck on a hook for a long time, making it easier for your kids to catch them.
The latter don’t get hung up on anything; they glide above submerged obstacles and as well as weeds. The easier the process, the more fun your kids are likely to have.
Provide your kids with short rods and poles that are especially designed for children and are easier to use. Oftentimes, fishing gear comes with cartoon characters that attract kids and make the entire process more appealing for them.
Moreover, your child might not be able to hook, cast, and reel alone. Therefore, it is best that you cast for your child and then hand the rod over to them.
Before you go out fishing with your family, make sure that you are completely aware of all the rules and regulations of your state regarding fishing. Follow all the rules in order to avoid any troubles later.
Know the Right Time to Leave
If your kids are going fishing for the very first time, don’t be surprised if they are tired in a few hours and want to go back home.
While you might be looking forward to an entire day out, your kids might not feel the same.
Remember, the outing is for them, not you. Understand when it’s time to leave and don’t try to force your kids to make catching a fish their first priority.
Let them have fun the way they want to. You won’t gain anything by forcing them to continue the activity that they are not willing to.
What Is a Good Age to Take a Child Fishing?
Fishing is a great bonding experience for elders and children. Children get to learn the exuberance and patience of the catch while getting to spend more time with their role models.
So, what is a good age to introduce fishing to your young ones?
It might come as a surprise to you, but the age at which the natural curiosity of a child takes over them is three. This curiosity further draws them into new experiences and adventures of the world.
At three-years old, your child might be able to use their senses such as seeing, talking and hearing to understand the fishing process in a better manner.
Having said that, we believe that there is no specific age at which you can be certain that your kid will enjoy the overall experience.
Remember that every individual grows at a different pace and so does your child. Moreover, fishing equipment such as lures, poles, bait, and hooks can be quite challenging as well as dangerous if they are not handled with care.
Therefore, it is essential that you don’t rush the process of introducing fishing and its etiquettes to your kids.
How to Make a Fishing Trip Fun for Children?
Here are some great ways to keep your kids interested and amused with fishing:
Pay Attention to Your Kids
When fishing with kids, make them your top priority instead of focusing on catching fish. Point all your attention at making fishing a fun experience for them.
Let Your Kids Choose the Fishing Spot
Fishing is all about choosing the right spot and most of the times you need to change multiple locations before you can finally find the winning spot.
Use this requirement to your advantage and ask your kids to choose a spot. This will make them feel as if they are in charge of an adventurous and epic exploration.
Remember to provide them some guidelines during this process.
For instance you can tell them to find a spot where there is an abundance of trees or branches. This way, you won’t be giving any direct instructions and at the same time you’ll be leading your children in the right direction.
Gain Knowledge about Different Species
Educating your kids about various fish species along the way is not only fun but also useful. Learn about what different fish species eat and how big they grow. Providing these facts will stir up some interest in your child.
Purchase a Kid’s Fishing Rod
Kids are eager to try and learn new things at an early age and they can form all sorts of memories during your fishing adventure that might last a lifetime.
Buy them their first fishing rod. This will provide them with a sense of independency and will have a huge impact on their interest in fishing.
Some kids are less patient than others.
It’s best to be prepared with some exciting games in advance to make your trip more interesting. You can entertain them with some fun simple games such as ‘I Spy’ or ‘who catches the smallest/biggest fish’. These games will keep your little ones busy while they’re waiting for a fish to take the bait.
Take Short Breaks
To make your fishing day out more memorable and fun, take some time to simply relax and have a picnic with your family by the water.
You can regain some of the lost energy by eating and drinking. You can also play interesting board games with your kids during your break to avoid losing their interest.
When you’re fishing with kids, it is essential that you make them feel like every catch they make is an achievement.
Each time they catch a fish, take a picture of them. If your kid catches a fish with every cast, the process might get repetitive. In such case, take a picture each time they score a bigger fish or a different species than the last time. This will make your kids feel special and give them a sense of accomplishment.
Do a Silly Dance When Your Kids Catch a Fish
If you don’t have access to a mobile phone during your trip, you can do a silly dance instead of taking a picture. Every time your kids catch a fish, have a little celebration to make them feel special.
Not only will it make your kids happier, it might even motivate them to put more efforts in the activity.
Sing Songs Related to Fishing
If your kids enjoy singing, use the opportunity to sing some songs related to fishing during your outdoor adventure.
Choose a song that is catchy as well as easy so that your child can sing along with you. You can also make up a song on the spot if you are creative enough! Singing will keep your kids entertained as it’s a great pastime while you’re looking for the ideal spot to set up your fishing equipment.
Cook the Fish You Caught
You can cook a nice and delicious family meal using the fish you caught.
This is an amazing way to end your fun day. Your kids will be proud of themselves when you’ll all sit to eat the fish you caught together. It will give them a sense of accomplishment.
Shore Fishing vs. Boat Fishing for Kids
While your kids might not realize the difference between shore fishing and boat fishing during their first fishing trip, there are certainly some clear distinctions between the two.
Here is a comparison of shore fishing vs. boat fishing for kids:
Catch More Fish
One advantage to taking your kids shore fishing is that you and your family members are less likely to spook fish when compared to fishing from a boat.
The noise and shadow created from the boat can easily scare away bigger game fish.
Fishing from shore consumes less time than fishing from boat. The latter requires you to put a lot of extra efforts as well as time into the process.
The boat needs to be in good condition, and you need to buy gas for it and also register it.
With shore fishing, all you need to do is grab some necessary supplies and fishing gear and get to business right away.
Children find long processes boring; thus, shore fishing keeps them interested for long.
If your kids are interested in exploring a large number of locations in a single day then boat fishing might be the right choice for you. Trying a lot of new spots over the course of one day can be difficult when fishing from a shore.
Put Less Physical Effort
With boat fishing, the amount of physical effort you need to put in during your fishing trip is drastically reduced.
You don’t need to carry your fishing gear every time you need to change a spot. You can simply sit, relax and motor your way around. Seeing you relaxed might help your kids remain calm and have a great time.
Now deciding which type of fishing is better than the other greatly depends upon whether you think a boat will be a liability or an asset to you. It also depends on how much money and time are you willing to invest in your fishing trip.
If you think that you would rather go with the convenience of a boat, you can opt for a smaller or an average size fishing boat.
It will get you and your kids to multiple spots in a day, easier to maintain and trail, and also offer the same perks as a larger boat. The final decision completely depends on your personal preference and needs.
What are Some Fun Fishing Games?
Here is a list of some fun fishing games you can play while fishing with kids and make the experience more interesting and memorable for them:
- Announce rewards for smallest and biggest catch.
- Play ‘I Spy’ with your kids. You can use this game to teach them more about the nature and aquatic life.
- Make small paper boats with your kids to float on the water. Try to use eco-friendly paper for this activity.
- Take some interesting board games with you to play when you and your kids are tired fishing and need to relax without stopping the fun.
- Play a guess-the-fish-species game with your kids. Reward them with snacks for every right answer.
Our Final Thoughts
We hope that with all the aforementioned tips and tricks for fishing with kids, you found something worth your while.
While having the right fishing apparel, gear and supplies is essential, the most important objective you need to keep in mind while taking your kids out for fishing is having fun.
No matter how many fish you catch, your outing will count as a success if your kids return home happy and with a feeling of accomplishment of learning something new.
Focus on enjoying the outdoors to the fullest, being safe, and most importantly, being patient. Make a big deal out of every single catch your children make and help them create a memorable experience that they can cherish for a lifetime!