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FliesbyNight

Failure is a better teacher than success.

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So I got out for the first time this year.  Local waters are warming up and the stripers are feeding accordingly.

Mostly, I wanted to scout a favorite area that has not produced well for the past few years.  It was rearranged by some winter storms and then the Army Corps of Engineers staged their barges there for a  2 year dredging project.  Grrrrr! Grass and bottom structure torn up again!

That was three years ago and I went out to see if conditions were recovering. Figured I'd bring the long wand along, you know, just in case.  In 2 hours, I had three hits and missed them all. I'll admit to being a little rusty after a long winter and to be honest, both strikes surprised me and I was late setting the hook. Guess I didn't really expect to catch anything and let my concentration wander.  Shucks and other comments.

It occurs to me that I dwell more on the misses than fish in the hand. I find I learn more from what I screwed up than when I did it right. To be sure, keeping records of what you catch where and when is a big help in deciding where to go because it is positive information, but I find I learn more from my mistakes.  

Anyone else find that true? Or am I dwelling on the negative?

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Fully agree with you. Was out yesterday morning and hooked into a good slot sized snook (estimated 33-34") off of topwater. The fish was a fighter and circled the kayak several times. I had the motor set on spotlock because I didn't want to drop my bow and stern anchor lines to become snagging hazards, and also to stay in place and not blow the hole since fish were still busting bait. This kept the boat from following the fish meaning I had to work around my other rods that were  vertical directly behind the seat every time he went behind me. I thought I had him beat at one point until he made a strong run to my right side and behind the boat, caught in the rudder and parted the leader.

Funny how certain victory becomes a tragic defeat in just a moment. Even after landing lots of fish that size in the same conditions I am still thinking, Should I have taken it off spotlock and followed the fish? Do I need to rethink my rod storage option?, I forgot to change out the bite tippet to 30lb instead of the 20lb I had on from a previous redfishing trip? Should I have dropped the rear anchor line only and allow the kayaks bow to swing with the fish? If I would have landed that fish I would have simply taken a photo and released it without any other thought. But now I can guarantee that every time in the future I will have those very topics going through my head and may change my strategy.

I fully get what your saying, why dwell on the negative? Simple we don't learn from our successes, but from our failures.

 

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If you don't learn from your mistakes, you'll just make them again.  On the other hand, if you're constantly analyzing your methods, are you missing the fun of fishing?

For me, it's all about the fishing.  If I catch fish, icing on the cake.  I can be on the water all day without a hit, if the weather's good and the scenery is pleasant.  I miss too many hits to worry about what I did or didn't do.  I catch enough to keep me going back with fishing rods and not with cameras.

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I'm with Mike, I don't find not catching a fish failure. Wether your missing, catching, catching and than losing its all just fishing. I don't keep records about fishing, I rarely take pictures of fish, I get no extra pleasure because I caught something on something I made myself and I won't fish with anybody that's wants to keep score or act like a pro bass fisherman. It's nothing but shear fun and relaxation for me. I stress out over mistakes and failure in all other aspects of life so I have no room for it in fishing. Best thing I ever learned about fishing is to relax, its just fishing. 

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Y’all are playing my song... and I do try to learn from my mistakes (if possible)... Or as a buddy said years ago after I did every thing wrong and still got the fish... “Well, that’s one way to do it...”

Seriously though, some days I go home thinking I’m a genius... other days I go home talking to myself.

One thing I can pass along though that I learned from the best charter boat captain I ever worked for... He said to go after every fish like it was the only one you’d see that day... Pretty good advice for a guide.

By the way, I’m a year and a half using a trolling motor (after at least 20 years doing without one...) - and still learning.  Sometimes that troller will help you working a fish to the boat - other times it will hurt you... Like I said, I’m still learning which is which.

 

 

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I've been skunked before on fishing trips and I'll most likely be skunked again in the future. Oh well nothing to worry about. 

I just regroup and head back out and catch a bucket full. go figure!

I've caught more fish on flies I've tied its no longer exciting event

I tried a log book or journal thing everybody used to get excited about but always forgot to write anything in it. threw it out

 

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On 4/25/2021 at 5:43 PM, mikechell said:

On the other hand, if you're constantly analyzing your methods, are you missing the fun of fishing?

Mike,

 

I don't think so.  To me, figuring out where the fish should be is part of the interest in fishing.  They have millions of years of evolution, I have reasoning and experience. 

Seems like it should be a fair fight but so far, the fish are ahead on points.

 

Also, I am strictly saltwater so records are a huge bonus.  Knowing where you have or have not caught fish on which tides and time of year is huge when trying to maximize the limited time I can fish.

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Mystery is the allure of the missed strike. 

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This good thread also teaches patience when we don't catch anything immediately or sooner. My friend has a habit of catching his only fish just before we pack up to leave.

I'm reminded of a statement my Thomas Edison, "I can tell you about 4,000 ways not to create a light bulb." If it wasn't for him, we would be watching TV by candlelight!

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