It’s clear and brisk at 7:45 in the morning on the opening day of Free Fishing Weekend. The gear is all set up, the worms are squirmy, the coffee is steamy and the anticipation is electric. At 8 a.m., the whistle will blow – and lures will sail into the water.
Free Fishing Weekend, hosted by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, has been our kick off event of the summer for several years. I heard that 2,000? fish were in this pond, with 32 large (over 16 inches) trout lurking in the cool quiet depths.
Hungry little buggers. There is a 5 fish limit per child; the trick is to relax, take time between casts, and enjoy the day. Just about each cast will land a fish in moments.
My happiest part of the day – is having 11 and 14 year old boys. After so many years of fishing, they are able to mend their own poles, set up their lines, thread the worms, change out the lures; tangles are rare and are fixed by the tangler. Jon and Nate have a good time circling the pond helping other moms who took their children fishing. They can feel the panic, of the child and mom, and rush in to gently help out the family. It’s Jon’s favorite part, helping a young child catch a fish.
As the morning continues, people pack in, elbow to elbow trying to land the big one. There are prizes for boys and girls for Largest and Smallest fish, measured by size. Children running back and forth to get their fish measured.
Nate’s got his 5 in the bag, literally. He’ll go over and clean the fish. He’s getting really good at slow smoking the fillets. Yum-O.
Good things come to those who wait! Jon landed his 4th fish around 11 am – 22.5 inches! He runs with it to get it measured – he’s on top of the leader board for the boys!
Both boys clean their own fish – The large one had egg sacks, Jon thought it was really cool.
Sure enough, Jon won for Largest fish for Boys and Overall. He raked in the prizes!
A special thanks to the Donors – In particular Figaro’s Pizza, Papa Murphy’s Pizza, Chinook Winds Casino and Walmart! A Large Round of Applause for all of the Donors!
Oh wait – Who’s that winning 2nd place for the boy’s division? Nate! Awesome!
Our local fish hatchery leaves the pond open for fishing through the month of June. You might want to check out your nearby spots and see what is happening. You may have missed the event – but June is Fishing Month! Get out there an Enjoy!
We picked the Free Fishing Weekend as our post to share as our Summer Field Trip – I am participating with the Schoolhouse Review Crew – Click the button below to see some other Summer Field Trip ideas!
(Link will be live on June 19th)