Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

At its heart, lure fishing is an incredibly easy way to fish.........

By nature I don't think I am remotely a worrier, but when it comes to fishing I just can't help worrying sometimes that this whole lure thing can still come across as some kind of secret club where if you don't know how to do things in certain ways then you're not doing it right. I am not remotely blaming anybody or anything, that is not my point at all, instead it's just me saying what concerns me at times and throwing it out there. I love the fact that all kinds of lure fishing in fresh and saltwater seems to be growing here in the UK and Ireland, but judging by some of the emails and Facebook stuff I get I still believe that there is a degree of confusion attached to lure fishing in general. As there is of course to going bait fishing if you don't know anything about it. Imagine trying to describe cricket and a five day Test match that might end up in a draw to a bunch of Americans - now that's complicated !! Rightly or wrongly I have always believed that the act of actually going fishing is at its heart a pretty simple thing to do, and for the most part the difficult is learning where the fish might be and when - which also happens to be the most difficult stuff to write about and put across in a way which genuinely helps anglers out, but this I believe is because all of us are learning about it all the time and watercraft is a kind of science that just can't be mastered.

For all the rods, reels, line and lures, at its most basic level, lure fishing for bass at heart can easily be the incredibly simple act of casting lures out and retrieving them. For all the twitching, pausing, walking the dog, suspending and sliding, I know a lot of anglers who catch a lot of bass by spending a lot of time blasting out various minnow-type hard lures and cranking them back in at different speeds. But these anglers I know who catch lots of bass happen to know lots about where to be and when. Watercraft - perhaps the single most important word in saltwater fishing especially. Now sure, there is a whole world of different kinds of lure fishing to try and get your head around if you want to, but I would bet that anglers or non-anglers hearing about this whole lure fishing thing find casting and retrieving the most simple way to go about getting into it all. And then from there it's up to the individual anglers to decide upon how much they get into it and how far they might want to take it. That though is the beauty of lure fishing to me, the fact that one angler can choose to almost remain at a certain level of technical fishing knowledge and still be in with a shout at some fish, but then the next angler might want to keep on learning new technical skills and potentially be in with a shout at a load more fish. Lure fishing surely encompasses all, and I really believe that this is the way it needs to be pushed and portrayed - easily accessible and then you take it where you want to go...............

So why then are some anglers more successful than others when it comes to catching more fish ? I do believe that fishing mirrors human nature in that some people just seem to have a degree more natural ability (talent ?) for fishing than others. It's the same with sports, science, languages etc. Some people are just better at different things, but this is not to take away from what I believe is also another very important thing - inquisitiveness, or the desire to learn more. I know that I am guilty of asking a lot of questions when I am with other anglers and guides, wherever I might be on this earth, but then that is just my inbuilt desire to want to learn more about all kinds of fishing - not just lure fishing. I can't help it, but on the flipside I couldn't care less for example about politics or big business and you won't find me asking questions about it unless I am in a social situation where it might be deemed "polite" to make conversation. Me ? Well I do try, but I am a useless actor !! I would say that the best anglers I come across have a mix of natural ability for fishing and an inbuilt desire to try and figure things out - both on the different ways to actually fish front and also the where, when and perhaps why. Watercraft again. Fishing is completely unmasterable (a new word ?) and I love it all the more for that, but I try never to forget how simple the whole ethos of trying to outwit fish really is at heart. Not that trying to beat nature is remotely easy at times !!