As the parent of two young boys there is nothing more exciting than the look on a child’s face when a fish enter’s the boat. However, with an attention span shorter than that of a golden retriever at the dog park the challenge becomes keeping them entertained long enough to actually get to the experience of a fish entering the boat.
Typically that ends up meaning that you’re stuck chasing 6″ bluegills, but if you’re looking for a great way to both catch something that actually has teeth and give kids a positive experience there’s a frequently overlooked secret weapon located at lake cabins everywhere… The pontoon!
Sure for serious anglers fishing from a pontoon might feel like the equivalent of driving a minivan but to a kid, with bench seats and open space, it feels like a floating play room. Not only is pontoon trolling an awesome way to introduce junior anglers to gamefish pike, bass, walleyes, and even muskies but it’s as simple as finding a good weedline and can be very effective.
Heading up to the family cabin for Labor Day I grabbed my trolling rods and a few Rapala Super Shad Raps. A couple trips around the bay near their cabin (Pro tip – Casting likely areas ahead of time will allow you to see which are holding fish) and BOOM – FISH ON! Not only were we successful in giving Hunter his first trophy pike but this was also actually the first boat ride ever for my 5 week old Weston. Now he’ll forever be able to say (once he’s able to talk anyway) that he caught a 41″ pike the first time he ever went fishing!
Throw in the added bonus of being able to bring the whole family along for a relaxing cruise around the lake and it was a perfect weekend. So next time you head out on the pontoon don’t forget the trolling rods, Rapalas, and most importantly the snacks!
Glad to see you get out on the water. Definitely a great way to take the family fishing. I did about the same thing over the 4th. Without the 40″ pike though. Nice work.
Awesome post Will!