Martens: Fun fishing

Hitting the tournament trail is a family affair

In the past few years, many of the pro anglers have made necessary adjustments for taking their families on the road with them. Traveling with an RV is one of the wisest decisions my wife, Lesley, and I have made.

 When we travel from one tournament to another, we have a Ford 350 truck and a fifth wheel along with an Excursion for towing my boat. It's quite a sight when we hit the road or enter a campground, but it's even more challenging when we stop for gas! It's amazing how often you can drop a quick $1,000. That's not fun.

 The fun begins when I get to go fishing with a friend or family member who reels in a big one. Recently I took my mom and two kids (ages 1 and 4) out on Logan Martin Lake. Jordan, my 4-year-old, announced to us that she was sure she would catch a fish. We thought, "Sure you will, because Daddy will hook it for you and let you reel it in."

 However, Jordan likes to do everything herself. She cast out and when the line got near the boat, she did figure 8's with her Scrounger just 6 inches under water. She did this for a couple of hours until, suddenly, there was a big splash. Jordan set the hook and yelled, "I got one!"

 Before we realized what happened, she swung a striper into the boat. My mom and I laughed after the shock wore off. After a few photos of Jordan's fish, she exclaimed, "It's a miracle." She also reminded us that she said she was going to catch one.

 That's what keeps fishing fun for me, especially when people catch fish on my own lures, like the Scrounger. My new quote should be, "So easy to use, a 4-year-old can do it!"

 With a daughter so into fishing, just visiting tackle stores also can be a fun break. Recently at Mark's in Alabama, I had my mom and the kids along to do some shopping. While mom and I shopped, Jordan found a boy close to her age and the two of them went up and down the aisles pointing to all of their favorite lures. Jordan was giggling and pointing to all of the shiny, sparkly lures and exclaiming how beautiful they were. You know, like guys do.

 I often wonder if she'll be a famous angler or something else, like a paleontologist (she says she wants to dig for dinosaur bones when she grows up). For now, she's having fun fishing with me — and in any case, I'll always have Spencer as a backup.

 Bye for now, and good luck fishing!

 — Aaron

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