A great camping activity——Fishing

Learning how to fish is a rite of passage for most young people, and it often turns into a lifetime passion because even beginners can fish with minimum equipment, at the right fishing hole.

As a camper, fishing is a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, whether you're in the summer sun or an ice-fishing hut on the water. Sit tight for a quick fishing lesson before you head out on your next camping adventure.

Social Aspects of Fishing

When you learn how to fish, you gain more than just a new skill. When you're taught to cast a line and wait for a bite, you learn patience, survival skills and appreciation for the earth's water resources.

Not to mention fishing is an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends. Because the sport knows no age limits, you can bring your friends, your parents, or your children along, too.

Still, for most anglers fishing is a chance to relax, de-stress and commune with nature amid scenic surroundings. It's when the big catch tries to get away that your competitive drive is let loose. If you love that feeling, you can put your fishing skills to the test in a fishing competition. Plan a family camping trip around your competition so everyone can join in on the fun.

Before you can enter into a competition, however, you first need to learn how to fish.


Amateur anglers can start with the most basic fishing gear: a cane pole (bamboo pole) with a monofilament (single strand) line attached to a hook and bait that's dropped into the water. This technique is useful for shoreline or dock fishing where depth and distance are limited. Spin-casting rods and spinning rods are also beginner-friendly.

  • Spin-Casting Rods

Spin-casting rods are recommended for beginning anglers because they're fairly easy to manage with small line guides and a spin-casting reel on top. When you learn how to fish with a spin-casting rod, remember:

  1. A 6- to 10-pound test line—which will break when 15 pounds of force or more is applied—is suitable.
  2. When casting, position yourself with your face toward the fishing spot and your body slightly turned away. Hold the fishing rod in one hand and push and hold the thumb button on the reel. Raise your hand holding the rod and bring it up to eye level until the rod is almost vertical. At this point, flick your forearm forward with a small wrist movement. Release the thumb button to release the line when the rod is about level with your line of sight.
  • Spinning Rods

Spinning rods are also great when you learn how to fish: they have larger line guides than a spin-casting rod, and there's an easy-to-use spinning reel on the bottom. With a spinning reel, you can cast your line quickly, covering longer distances in both saltwater and freshwater fishing. The important details include:

  1. Spinning rods use lighter lures or baits than those for spin casting.
  2. To use a spinning rod, grasp the handle and use your middle fingers to hold the stem with your forefinger on the spool. Your hand should look like this. Use your free hand to open the reel's bail.Turn your face toward the target spot and situate your body at a 45-degree angle. With a smooth motion, raise the rod until it is almost vertical and then straighten your forefinger to release the line.
Fishing Safety

There are a few basic safety tips to keep in mind as you head out for your first, fifth or 50th fishing trip.

  • When fishing with a group, maintain a distance of at least a rod's length between you and the next angler.
  • Check your surroundings before you cast to avoid hooking the wrong target.
  • An adult should supervise younger anglers at all times.
  • If your line gets stuck in the water, jiggle it cautiously to avoid a sudden release that would fly back and hurt someone.
  • Always handle your catch with wet hands to avoid damaging protective slime covering the fish.
  • If you intend to release the fish, unhook it quickly, and gently lower it back into the water. Fish that you intend to keep should be put on ice right away.

After you learn how to fish, and have a few successful fishing adventures, your hobby could grow into a lifetime passion. If nothing else, it's a great camping activity, so don't forget a pole on your next trip.