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“The One that Got Away”

I have told a few stories here about “the one that got away”.  Do not get me wrong, my fishing partners and I have landed A LOT of really nice fish over the years.  We have albums full of photos proving that most of them have not “got away”.  Yet, the ones that got away seem to live forever in our memory.  That is fine, that keeps us fishing, but hopefully there are some things learned in the process:

Why some of the best fishing lessons come from the ones that got away

Let’s see, I can think of a few hard lessons:  Re-tie knots, sharpen hooks, upgrade hooks, replace landing net netting, just to name a few.

Most importantly, I can think of one other lesson–Do not quit!  Oh believe me, I know the gut-punch of losing a big fish.  I have sat down mumbling to myself more than once; I felt like crying, felt like throwing the rod in the water and giving up.  But I did not.  The only real cure to losing a big fish is to get back in the game, to hook another one, and next time land it!  Oh sure, it may take a long time before you hook another one like you just lost.  On the other hand, it may not take nearly as long as you think.  It may happen on the next cast!

One of my biggest pike came after losing what was a big pike.  I rested the spot, came back an hour or two later, changed up lures and got bit again!  This time the pike was twice the size of the one I had lost!

I can remember my son’s agony after losing a big brown trout.  He had done nothing wrong, the fish just got off before we could put it in the net.  My only advice?  Keep fishing!  He did and an hour or two later he caught a brownie that was just as large as the one he had lost.

Learn from your mistakes and never quit!


About daryl bauer

Daryl is a lifelong resident of Nebraska (except for a couple of years spent going to graduate school in South Dakota). He has been employed as a fisheries biologist for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission for 25 years, and his current tour of duty is as the fisheries outreach program manager. Daryl loves to share his educational knowledge and is an avid multi-species angler. He holds more than 120 Nebraska Master Angler Awards for 14 different species and holds more than 30 In-Fisherman Master Angler Awards for eight different species. He loves to talk fishing and answer questions about fishing in Nebraska, be sure to check out his blog at outdoornebraska.org.

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