In terms of entertainment value, fishing has few rivalsEver since I could pitch a wiffle ball and cast a worm, I’ve been a fan of fishing and summer sports. No doubt the recurring theme of sun and wind won out over video games and watching television, and that’s still the case today.
By: Doug Leier, The Dickinson Press
Ever since I could pitch a wiffle ball and cast a worm, I’ve been a fan of fishing and summer sports. No doubt the recurring theme of sun and wind won out over video games and watching television, and that’s still the case today.
My neighbors will attest to that. At times I’m more than happy just to lounge on the bench in the front yard and watch the day wear on. As long as it’s outside, vote me in.
I’ll even admit to playing softball and even a round or two of golf, but life changes and so do priorities its been a decade or more since a swung a club or played ball. When it comes to enjoying my off time, I prefer fishing.
When you want and where you want
Baseball games are set with a schedule, and fishing, especially in North Dakota is just the opposite. It’s open 24/7/365. If your job has you working nights and you need to unwind after work before hitting the pillow, a few casts at a nearby lake or river on your way will make you feel better.
Playing and watching outdoor sporting events means you’re dependent on another team and a previously scheduled time. If it’s raining around game time, I’d prefer not to watch baseball in the rain, but don’t mind making a few casts, even sans the rain gear, just to wet a line.
North Dakota has a variety of fishing opportunity. I’d bet dollars to doughnuts if you’re reading this column you’re less than a half hour away from wetting a line and catching fish.
And who doesn’t like a nice short drive to sip some coffee in the morning or catch up on the ball game scores on the ride home. For me, sometimes a short drive is almost better than casting out the back door.
Not a bad seat in the house
It’s been years since I joined tens of thousands at a domed stadium. If I’m going to be elbow to elbow with a complete stranger for three hours, I’d rather be fishing. I’ll share the banks of the river with just about anyone, and if their company, or mine for that matter, isn’t mutually enjoyed I can easily find another spot to fish.
With fishing there is no salary cap. If an angler wants to put the latest legal gadgety to the test, they’re more than welcome. Speaking from experience, I draw a certain level of satisfaction from using the most rudimenatry fishing lures and equipment, and smile bigger than a lottery winner if I by chance happen to catch a fish, figuring I must be quite the fisherman.
No such thing as a bad game
I’ve heard numerous people complain about a blow out or a sloppy game and have even wondered aloud myself “why did I pay to see this?” However, in terms of value for your dollar there’s nothing in the same league as a $10 full-year fishing license in North Dakota.
What do you get for $10? My fishing license is a season-long pass and if I wanted I could fish 24 hours a day for the year. The value even shocks me.
As for a bad game, I honestly return home empty handed on a regular basis. My kids catch a few bluegills, bullheads or whatever fish turns up. But even without a bite, they enjoy checking out the bugs on the shore, the birds entering and exiting throughout the visit and whatever other adventures kids discover while exploring their outdoor surroundings.
But that’s just what works for us. I won’t take issue with a personal choice to fish, golf or just sit back and watch the day go by ... as long as it’s outdoors.
Leier is a biologist with the Game and Fish Department. He can be reached by e-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org. Read his blog daily at www.areavoices.com/dougleier