Few things bring more joy and excitement to a young boy’s eyes than pulling in his first fish from the lake or ocean. They start young with little toy fishing poles and then graduate to maybe a net, fishing for crabs while Daddy “takes a few casts.” Eventually, you buy him his first real fishing rod and when that first fish bites onto the hook causing the fishing pole to jerk and bend, there’s a rush of adrenaline, fear, and excitement that cannot be described in any other activity. The fight commences and it is a primal boy versus animal brawl. If the boy is so lucky to have that first fish jump out of the water, he is hooked for life. Otherwise, the beast is eventually brought within site and the battle is eventually won when the fish is in the boat. This monster of the deep could be a 30lb striper or it could be a 30oz sunfish. It makes not matter. It is an animal that he lured, hooked, and captured.
My son Harry (6) got a the Lightning McQueen fishing kit by Shakespeare for Christmas of 2010 when he was 3 years old. As soon as the snow melted off the back porch, he would cast the small weight into the snow below and pretend that he was fishing. I told him that if he kept practicing, I would put a hook on there and bring him out. He practiced about an hour a day for months and by the time he was 4, he could hit a bucket about 20 yards out with a cast. Harry has LOVED fishing since he even knew what it was. Good….his Dad loves it too.