Take a Kid Fishin'

ou can never know enough about the great past time of fishing. To the young or old, whether you’re new to it or a seasoned pro, fishing is a constant learning experience. Every angler is looking for that next new thing (or old tried and try method) that will give him or her the edge out on the water.  The Almanack has always been on the lookout for ways that will enhance the experience and to also minimize the telling of "the-one-that-got-away” stories!    
o that end, here are this year’s most useful hints, tips, and techniques, along with a dose of some good common sense.  As always, we provide our annual BEST DAYS TO GO FISHIN’ table that highlights the very best days for success in 2017.  Be sure to consult it before you plan your next fishing trip (or ‘schedule’ your next sick day from work!):


When you lose a fish and reel in the line with a curly-cue shape on the end, it means the knot unraveled. This is due to tying it wrong.  To make a knot adequate for catching fish, make sure it gathers, snugs-up smoothly, and is evenly formed.
Fishermen or boaters tip:  drill a hole through a large cork and fasten your key chain through it. Keys will float if accidentally dropped overboard.
Fish vary in their feeding habits so take a good look at the stream bottom and by the riverbanks to identify nymphs that are about to hatch. This will help you to decide which fly to use.
Hooks can dull fairly quickly after catching several fish or being snagged on the bottom. Hooks used for tough-mouthed species should be especially sharp. If you want to maximize your catch, make sure that you change your hooks often.
The drag system in your reel must work smoothly, or the fishing line will produce a jerking drag that could break the line or pull the hook out of the fish's mouth. Service your reel at least once per season Lubricate it, clean the drag system, and rebuild it with new drag washers.
Here are some useful tips on choosing the right tackle:
Rod and Reel - Look for a rod that is light with good action. It should be very flexible and able to spring back. Ultra-light rods work very well for trout fishing. A good reel is likely the most important piece of equipment. It should have an adjustable drag and should be designed to prevent backlashes. A good ultra-light rod and reel will cost around $70.
Line - Use premium line because it has low-visibility and resists tangles. Four-pound test is the heaviest line you will likely need and ultra-light reels can use two-pound test.
Hooks - Small hooks work the best. Avoid anything larger than a  #16,  #18 treble hook, or a #14 single hook. 
Sinkers- Split-shot and sliding egg sinkers provide the best weight for bait and artificial bait fishing.