A Rod, A Reel, and Time with Dad
I was eleven years old, bowl-cut, brown hair, skinny legs coming out of denim cut-off shorts, hands dirty from digging for worms, standing on the edge of the lake the day I caught my first fish with my dad. Best feeling in the world.
My dad taught me how to fish, and my favorite memories were the times just the two of us stood on the shore of a Georgia lake, fishing poles in hand.
Now my son, Shawn, is seven and I recently took him on his first fishing trip. He’s a high-energy kid, and I wasn’t sure handing him a pole and telling him to sit still and wait for a fish to bite would work, so we started with a trip to the Go Fish Education Center in Perry. It was such a cool experience.
We walked through the aquariums and pointed out the dozens of unique Georgia native fish swimming by, and had lots of fun with the fishing simulators, both freshwater and saltwater. Then it was out to the stocked fishing pond, where the staff provided the bait and we got some good nibbles. We got our fishing licenses onsite and then headed out to lunch in town and to the big lake afterward.
First stop after lunch was to my favorite fishing hole, Flat Creek Public Fishing Area. Georgia DNR stocks this 108-acre lake with Bluegill, Redear Sunfish, Crappie, Channel Catfish, and Largemouth Bass throughout the year and the great habitat attracts plenty of other local fish. We found the perfect spot, under a nice shady tree, pulled up some worms and cast our lines. After less than half an hour I watched with pride as Shawn reeled in his first fish. The smiles on both of our faces told the whole story.
Now we keep the rod in the back of the truck so that every trip to Rozar Park with the family includes casting the line into the lake, and we get away, just the two of us, to Flatcreek PFA whenever we can.