Finding my Passion for Fishing

Our dock on the Inlet

I have been around fishing most of my life. Growing up on a farm offered a perfect opportunity to play along the banks of the pond that my dad carved out of the landscape. Inspired by clean, fresh springs, he worked for years with his bulldozer to create that pond, which would hold memories for all of us for years to come. He created a little island in the pond, not perfectly centered, but a spot that made our imaginations run wild. We would paddle over to the island in our small boat and set up camp, but mostly opted not to spend the night after the skies turned dark and the sounds of nature seemed a little too close for comfort. We caught plenty of bass and brim, and often spotted bullfrogs, snapping turtles, lots of snakes, and occasional visitors such as geese and ducks.

Many years later, I look out over the most beautiful waters one could imagine: Murrells Inlet! My husband and I have been blessed to live here almost a decade. Since we have a dock and a 15-foot Whaler—which happens to be the perfect size boat to fish the inlet—you would think that we would be out on the water all the time and would be excellent anglers. But I have to confess it is quite the contrary. Don’t misunderstand. We have had some exciting times. We especially love to fish the jetties for red drum and have taken some beauties there.

Big Red Drum caught off the Jetties in Murrells Inlet

The excitement and adrenaline rush fishing in the rough waters is what we enjoy most. Realizing that this was not the safest thing to do (we frequently saw the remains of wrecked boats smashed on the jetties), we decided to try flounder fishing, which we could enjoy in calmer waters. We found flounder fishing to be a bit boring, but not because we were so good at it. Without a doubt, we have not had very much luck fishing for flounder.

So, I ask myself: What can I do to make fishing more enjoyable? I know what some of you are thinking . . . I would rather be hunting, right? Truthfully, the answer is yes. Fishing will never take the place of my passion for hunting. But hunting season is over now, with the exception of predator hunting, so it is only natural that I would turn my attention to fishing, a wonderful outdoor sport that is right at my backdoor!

My husband is an experienced off-shore fisherman and has enjoyed many wonderful fishing outings throughout his life. He has tried to get me more excited about it by taking me on some guided trips—one in Boca Raton and one to the Everglades in Florida. We’ve also gone tarpon fishing here in our waters to the south

Offshore Fishing Boca Raton

I did enjoy those great fishing trips, but yearn to experience for myself that thrill that so many outdoors people feel when they are fishing. So, today I will begin focusing on what it is that I enjoy about fishing and see if I can find the passion I seem to be missing. I do recall the times when I had fun, and it always seemed to revolve around the excitement of not knowing what was on the other end of the line when I was hooked up with a fish. I have caught some unusual fish such as bonnet sharks, eels, baby octopus, toadfish, ribbonfish, and a small sting ray. Getting them off the hook was not part of the fun, though!

Just being out on the blue open water is a wonderful feeling all in itself. I loved leaving early in the morning so that we could see the sunrise. With our Thermos filled with hot coffee, it felt exhilarating to feel the chill of the early morning air as we sliced through the waters on our way offshore. Equipped with a bag of hard-boiled eggs rolled in salt and pepper, and a cooler with some beer, beef jerky, and chips for a midday snack was a must. It was not just about fishing; it was about the experience and the time spent with my hubby away from the ordinary routines of our week. The best reward was bringing home a beautiful fresh catch for dinner. We love to experiment with new recipes, and this will be a big incentive for me to get back out there and find that passion for fishing!

fishing

Austin Bond Photography

So, today I begin to focus on all these enjoyable moments I have experienced over the years and replace this indifference I have about fishing with enthusiasm and yes, passion!

 

As written for Waccamaw Outdoors Magazine May Issue.

Author: maggie

Hi there! I’m a real estate agent by day, an avid hunter on the weekends, and this is my blog. I live in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina have a wonderful husband and fellow hunter, whose name is Trippett. My passion for hunting is rooted in growing up in a hunting family. I loved everything about hunting and was always fascinated with guns and archery.

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12 Comments

  1. This story reminds me that I never eat Beanie Weenies or Vienna sausage with saltine crackers at home, but they seem like a delicacy when fishing from a boat and enjoying fresh air.

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    • so true!!! something about it makes it all good!! looking forward to getting back out there maybe this weekend.

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  2. The sunrise and sunsets are my favorite times on the water or in the mountains its a time that nothing else matters and you feel good about life. I really love bass fishing just as much as I love hunting and I’m pretty sure as long as I’m outdoors I have a smile on my face!

    You are an awesome wife for going even though it’s not thrilling to you. The memories made will be priceless when you are not around him and I’m sure it will make you smile because he was happy. 🙂

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    • So sweet, Kristie! I think that some of us are water babies and some are earth drawn. For me, I do enjoy being on the water but being in the forest really puts that smile on my face. There is something about the trees and the woods that makes me feel at home! I was raised in the country and that is what keeps me grounded. Thanks so much for your kind words!

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  3. Now you’re doing what I love, but haven’t had time to do! I’m all about being out on the water fishing! Enjoy!

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    • ok, Spring! I am ready to see some awesome photos of your fishing adventures! can’t wait!

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  4. Maggie, You write very well! This post reminds me of lots of fun out on the water fishing that I have had with my kids, from the Rappahannock to the Chesapeake Bay, and lots of little ponds! Coolers full of goodies and unknown things on the other end of the line! Second to wing shooting, I love boating, and all the adventures, including fishing! Thanks for sharing your adventures!

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    • Thank you Elizabeth! I appreciate that. I have been so busy with my real job- selling real estate that I have not had as much time to write. I was a bit distracted with turkey hunting as well! I have to say, I am so excited about my wing shooting and so happy to have introduced it to my daughter, Caroline. We want to take a trip to your new place soon!!

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  5. I was born with a rod in my hand. Dad gave me the equivalent of a Snoopy pole, put a rubber plug on the end, and put a Hula Hoop on the ground. I cast into the hoop until I was good at it, and then took a few steps back. I can land a lure any place I want it now. Casting to shore for bass or dropping a worm into the current to find a brookie in a stream, I’m all over it. I love fishing in a different way than hunting.

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  6. That is a sweet visual, Robin!!! Isn’t it amazing how fishing seems to be a memory that stays close to our hearts! Thanks for your comments and I can feel my heart stirring again to get out there and make more memories!

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