The school holidays seem like they are always just upon us. Time to “take a kid fishing”….
I still remember my first fishing expedition – and “fish”, albeit an eel. The site of the epic battle was Long Bay creek, just below the Vaughan Homestead. I was three, the eel was long! A piece of butcher’s string and a rusty hook was my tackle of choice; no doubt the bait was offal. I still remember the cheering crowds, and I’m not sure but I think there is still a brass plaque on the spot.
I didn’t realise at the time that I was hooked, and I’ve been fishing ever since, sometimes regularly, sometimes not for months. But for most fisher-humans, once they start it can grow into an interesting hobby. Some make it a sport, most never stop.
Taking a little kid fishing is just that: take the kid fishing. Leave you own gear at home. One rod or line for them, and focus on keeping their hook baited, and keep the line close to the piles if you’re on a wharf. A chair is good too; you can keep them planted and safe. On a boat it depends on their sea legs, so take a short exploratory trip first.
On land or sea, be willing to quit when they start to get scratchy. Even half an hour fishing is fine – little kids’ attention-span can limited, especially if there’s no hot bite.
Fish early or later in the day and fish any tide. Use little rows of hooks called sabikis, with a small ball of bread on each hook – works great. Use a heavy sinker to stop the wrigglers flaying about dangerously.
You don’t need rod and reel (although you can get a decent kid’s set for about $40), a hand line will do. Your kids will love it, hopefully its the beginning of their “outdoor campaigns”. Your sprat-eating cat will love it to