A LIFELONG HOBBY And Love for the Outdoors
One of the things that drew me to the plumbing profession was all the time I got to spend outside being active. I think that’s what draws me to the hobbies I enjoy outside of work as well. January is National Hobby Month, an opportunity to celebrate all the things we spend our time doing when we’re not at work. I have plenty of hobbies, but I think my primary hobby is fishing — specifically trout fishing. It’s something I’ve enjoyed doing for most of my life, and I don’t see that enjoyment waning anytime soon. I’ve been trout fishing since I was in junior high school. Three of my friends and I would go camping in the North Georgia mountains and fish in one of the countless trout streams up there. The camping element of the whole adventure was half the fun, honestly. We all loved to fish, but we also just loved being out in the woods. I still go fishing with those same friends today even though it’s usually only once a year. We’re all scattered now; one lives in Texas, another one lives in North Carolina, and another lives in Kentucky. My friend in Kentucky usually has it easy when we get together to go fishing because we’ll all visit him. He lives on 300 acres near the Cumberland River, which is known for having a lot of huge trout swimming around in it. “All the triumphs and tragedies of trout fishing blend into one big adventure.” Back when my friends and I first started trout fishing, we’d be lucky to come back with two or three fish total. Luckily though, we’ve gotten better at fishing the longer we’ve done it. Now we usually fish right up to the limit, depending on where we are. In Georgia, you’re allowed to keep eight fish, and there’s no size limit. In Kentucky, there are a lot more restrictions. I always tell people they need to take a lawyer with them when fishing in Kentucky just to navigate the many laws and regulations there.
North Georgia along the West Fork River around five years ago. I hooked a really big fish, but it got off my line right away. I wouldn’t let anyone else fish in that spot for the rest of the day. I told my friends I was going to get that fish. I switched from a spinner to just a hook with a cricket and sinker, and I cast my line into the water. It went taut
almost immediately, and I thought, “That’s him.” I was right and ended up reeling in a 21-inch brown trout. I haven’t had a catch quite like that since. Of course, fishing comes with its own share of misadventures as well. One time, one of my friends capsized his canoe on the Cumberland River, and another time a friend and I fell out of our canoe in North Georgia. And that was in mid-March when it was only around 35 degrees outside.
A lot of my stories from over the years run together now. We’ll all be sitting around a campfire, and I’ll start telling part of one story, only to end it with another. All the triumphs and tragedies of trout fishing blend into one big adventure. What’s something that you enjoy doing so much that you’ll endure the misadventures with the adventures? What hobbies do you want to continue doing, or pick back up, this year?
–Pa u l Little
My love of fishing has led to a lot of great adventures and experiences over the years. My favorite catch ever happened in
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