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Mountain Home Magazine

The Lunker: BAITS or BALLS

I’ve heard golfers say, “After my bad showing on the course today, I might as well sell my golf stuff and take up fishing, it’s got to be better than this.” The opposite has been said when an angler goes all day without a bite. Casting lures and hitting little balls have a lot in common. Let’s take a look at chasing those green fish or a little white ball.

To be considered serious competitors fishermen and golfers join a club and enter tournaments. They travel from place to place for competition. The golfer uses a motorized golf cart that carries a huge bag full of a mix of golf cubs; each club has a special use like putting or driving the ball. The fisherman rides on a boat equipped with a locker full of rod and reel outfits, each with a special lure for a different presentation to entice fish from the shallows or the depths.

Practice is required to become proficient at angling or golf. The golfer must choose the right club for the distance to the hole, the lie of the ball, and current conditions. He must endlessly practice his stroke and master his swing. The angler must choose the right rod outfitted with the proper reel, line, and lure. He endlessly practices accuracy of cast and lure presentation, which differs for each lure and situation. Even after much practice and improved proficiency, the athlete may become frustrated and desperate.

Both sports have tournaments through the season to advance their standing to the top position at year’s end. Golf has a tee time while fishing has a set start time. The golfers follow the group ahead of them to play the next hole, while the next group is on the green behind them. They take on refreshments and nourishment at the ninth or eighteenth hole. Fishermen run to their favorite first spot, then they randomly follow others as they move from hole to hole. They have drinks and snacks through the tournament and break out a sandwich for lunch.

Weather is no obstacle for either of these competitors: they both are out there rain or shine and seek shelter only when lightning threatens. The clubs and rods can act as lightening rods and prove to be disastrous for the nut who would defy Mother Nature.

Fishermen try for the most weight and the lunker fish, while the golfer seeks the lowest score and a hole-in-one. They can tell great stories about why they sliced the ball, missed the fish, landed in the rough, or broke off a lure on a stump.

So, there are a lot of similarities between fishing and playing golf. If the switch were made, would one soon question if they made a change for the better? Would they be in a better frame of mind after a day of competition in their new venture?  My daughter Lisa says it this way, “When I golf, I can just hit the ball again, and hopefully I can just hit it better the next time. When I fish, I feel like, where are the damn fish!?”

Both groups support and promote young members in pursuing their respective sport. The Tioga County Bass Anglers appreciate Laurel Health Pro-Am’s support of their annual Kid’s Fishing Derby.