This is easier said than done, but one your find your niche, your time on the water is more enjoyable. I will preface this by saying that I am not the greatest, kayaker, angler, or person on this earth. I still have a lot to learn, but I am learning. The following areas are small things that irritate me and others I know. I may be the unpopular one that says something about it, but I want to help make others (as well as my own) time on the water enjoyable.
1) Unless you have a book, you are not holier than thou.
I see a lot of fishermen that snub others. Cliques in fishing circles (i.e. spin vs. fly) are ridiculous. I just do not like some people but I do not force my dislikes or feelings upon others, and tend to keep my feelings about others to my self.
I am a pro staffer, but this generally does not come up in conversation unless someone ask me about my kayak or my affiliation, which at that point opens up the conversation. I want people to know about me as a person. Respect me for me, not because I am affiliated with a company.
2) Hard work pays off.
Remember, nothing is free. You have to work for the many benefits and accolades that this sport has to offer. I have not had anything given to me in this sport, and I feel like it has made me a better and more credible angler.
3) Do your own research.
Fishing is fishing. The internet is a good tool to help you make a final decision on a spot, but one should not wait to see someone post up and hit a spot once it has been posted. Get out there and befriend someone. Go out on some trips, gain confidence and you will find spots that are your own.
4) Don’t post everything on the internet.
There is no problem with posting information on local forums, and I encourage it from time to time. I think a good report gives the species caught and the general geographical location (i.e. VA Beach). If you point out a spot (i.e. Lynnhaven) you might find 30 people looking for your spot next time you go out. Also, if you are not form the area, please don’t hotspot the areas you fished. Locals might enjoy some seclusion and may not appreciate their spots being put out there for everyone to see.
5) If you want to know something just ask, don’t lurk around trying to pick up intel.
I work full time, and go to school damn near full time. I understand that timing and location may not make it easy to have a quality day on the water. Ask someone personally if you want information. You might just be surprised the quality of information that you are given. What is the worst that will happen?
If you lurk and “pot lick”, you might be surprised at the information that you will miss out on. People might give misinformation when you are around just to keep you off the trail. If you are looking to gain a reputation, this is the way to go about it (it may not be the type of reputation you are looking for). Also, you may get pieces of valuable reputation, but will rarely be given the full story.
I have met quite a few people on the water and the internet. I fish with those people now. Most of these encounters were initiated by people asking me personally for information.
6) Get out there and lend a hand.
Once you get out there and give something back, you will be amazed at what you get in return.
I just wanted to put this information out there. What I described above are things that I am bothered with. Many people do not realize that their actions might be alienating them. Just something to think about.