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June 2002
Silver Spoons
August 2002
Starting Flats Fishing
September 2002
Beginning Gear - pt. 1
October 2002
Beginning Gear - pt. 2
November 2002
The Courteous Angler
Dec 2002/Jan 2003
Reflections at the
Tide Change
February 2003
Jerkbaits, another look
March 2003
How important is presentation?
April 2003
When to fish...?
May 2003
New ideas
September 2003
Flats Fishing 101 (recap)
December 2003
Another flats fishing year ends
Jan - Feb 2004
New year, new opportunities
March 2004
Flats fishing on any budget
August 2004
Special Request - Hurricane Report
New ideas (maybe recycled?)
May 2003

A quick note first...
I considered a topic for this article about fishing 'etiquette' as several of the boards I read have had major discussions regarding this issue. Some have discounted the accusations and rallying around one opinion or another as simply cliques or even 'elitists' crabbing about problems that they have created for themselves. I can not agree with the view that the problem is restricted to one group against another.

Looking back it was noted that my article of November '02 addressed this topic.
It may be worth a look to review the article. I am quite certain that a few paragraphs on one web site or another will not alleviate the problem. As anglers, recreational boaters or environmentalist there may be some collective effort to address this issue. I continue to urge caution when confronting another individual or group. If there is no other safe option your best response could be to get a boat registration number or description and location to turn over to the proper authorities. There are legislative options but they could backfire limit the use of fishing and boating areas for everyone. Let me know what you think.

Back to 'new' ideas
Okay, this is what I am thinking about. New ideas or at the very least, rehashed ideas can help increase our angling success or enjoyment. There is SO much information available to anglers today from so many sources it can be hard to decide which advice is the best for each of us individually. The internet provides the opportunity for almost anyone to publish their ideas for the world to peruse. If anyone thought that magazines would go the way of vinyl records (remember 45's and LP's?). My room(s) are full of magazines that I do not want to part with. I bring in so many I never even get them all read. Once I have them I know of at least one ad or story in each one that prevents me from recycling it.

I know that there are many anglers that have a system down and have been using similar methods for decades. Why should you change. I agree, if it works then why change? The question in the back of our angling minds though always chimes in "What if...?" even after the best fishing days. Pulling the other way is the idea that "if it works why fix it?" That is a something that each angler must decide.

Like the title of a current pop song all of these new ideas can complicate things for the angler. Personally I can attest to this. Usually a trip includes 6 rigged outfits, at least one new lure to try, a new fishing line or knot and probably some new gadget for good measure. Sometimes I do think that just getting back to basics is the right strategy. In practice though the 'new' stuff works much of the time. It also adds variety and keeps the fishing fresh. Anglers always have that 'go to' lure that is like a comfortable pair of shoes.

This came to mind as I introduced three new lures to my arsenal. One was the result of a magazine article about lures that imitate minnow type bait fish. While I was in a department store I picked up a lure that seemed to fit the description of the article. When I got my next chance to try something new it was tied on. That lure(it was a Yozuri Twitchin' Minnow - suspending jerkbait; now off the market) produced more fishing excitement than I can remember in a long time. I was getting a hit from decent trout or even better good size, leaping ladyfish on every cast. I even ignored the radio messages of my fishing buddies about the school of hungry reds they were in.

Two additional lures were the result of reading posts from other anglers about a lure that was working for these anglers. I yet to try these lures out but I am anxiously looking forward to how they will work. There is an added bit of excitement as I get a chance to see if the lure works as well for me or if I have done some homework that will produce more fish on my outing.

No Fear
You have seen the stickers in the back windows of cars and trucks. There are many variations. The one I like best is a reaction to the 'No Fear'/'Fear This' stickers. I like the one that says 'Ain't Scared' (or 'Skeered'). There is no reason to fear trying something new. Maybe it will work or maybe not. Anglers have little to lose as we will be wondering if we could have attracted that bigger fish if we had slowed the retrieve, made a cast up under the mangroves or tried that different color. Why not experiment a little?

Sometimes our 'experiments' involve nothing more than knocking the dust off of a technique, lure or fishing spot that has been overlooked for a while.
The most important thing is to make sure you get out and enjoy yourself. One thing about fishing is that you just don't get over it. Each trip has enough surprises that it never becomes routine.

That leaves one thing. Just get out and fish. Wherever you go, whatever you use make it a point to enjoy yourself.

Let me know what you think.

Good Fishing,

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