This has been thought about quite a bit for the last few months, but after several changes over the past year and my limited amount of time available to be out on the water I have decided to stop competing in online events. Before I get into it I want everyone to know this is 100% my opinion and this should not stray you away from fishing online events as it is a great way to get your feet wet and compete with those across your state, region or even nationally! I also know that my opinion may not matter to most, but I am sure some kayak anglers out there may relate to what I want to talk about. So here it goes…
My goal in all of this has been to become a better angler. That has been the goal from day 1 and literally everything could disappear (i.e. sponsors, social media, blogs, You-tube) and I would still be left with the one thing I feel that I am good at and that’s my ability to fish. After several years of competing from a kayak though I have felt my growth as an angler has been stunted due to competing in online events. I always want to be competitive and compete to win, which means going to lakes with the highest potential of catching the right fish and using the techniques that I am 100% confident in that will catch them. This also means putting a lot more time in away from home and getting as much time in on the water to maybe upgrade one or two fish throughout a month-long event. This all boils down to one thing…stagnant repetition. I rarely venture to new bodies of water or go out of my comfort zone now to try new things and approach a lake a different way. All that time spent trying new things translates into a missed opportunity fishing a lake with the potential to win. That was a huge wake up call for me and it’s time to make a change.
My focus for 2019 will be only live events. Events that I feel make the most of my time out on the water and are more of a true measurement of my fishing skill and how I stack up against others. I want to be able to adapt to a new body of water quickly and use the techniques that are best to fish the moment. Not going to a honey hole I have fished 100 times, using the same lures…and literally learning nothing. If I can’t take away anything from the experience whether good or bad I am doing myself a disservice and those that I am taking time away from. Seems a little bit extreme to think that way but that is how I feel.
It’s time to start putting a schedule together for next year. One filled with a ton of new water to keep me on my toes, and hopefully more experiences to fish with and learn from others in our sport.