2009-01-11_StLouisRiver

Today Mikey and I made a four hour drive north through Wisconsin in search of migrating Eel Pout.  

Eel Pout.

Eel Pout.

We arrived, with the help of GPS and Google Earth, around 2pm.  The Sun was beginning to dip over the ridge of the river valley.  The poor road conditions had me worn and ready to fish.  I was hungry for some lunch. We met Andy, Andy, and Tyler on the ice.  They were still setting up however had found the time to drill several holes.  The plan was to fish Buckshot Spoons tipped with only the heads from a Fathead minnow.  Andy demonstrated to us how the spoons should be fished, “Bang the Bottom.”  The jigging action really isn’t that excited.  It is a slow lift and follow back down motion.   Eel Pout are known as bottom fish and they are not a top predator by any means.  The slow action allows for the fish to take the minnow head and hook equally.  These fish do not tap your lure and when you have one on they are simply there. Andy was catching Pout on a green glow back Buckshot Spoon in about 20 – foot of water.  I was trying to cook noodles near my hole in 9-foot of water.  When its 3 degrees out it can be difficult to boil water on a camp stove without a pot lid. I caught one Pout after a few hours of waiting for my noodles to cook. We left the north country and power back to the south on better roads at 6pm.       

Heath Sershen and North Country truck.

Heath Sershen and North Country truck.


I don’t only fish for trout or with a fly rod. This makes me an angler.       

I have seen individuals decay in character from obsession of one specific type of angling.     
This type of behavior can be described. “Angler group profiles have begun to move away from means and other measures of central tendency with the angler population, i.e., the average angler approach (Shaffer, 1969) to one of using market segmentation techniques. This involves partitioning anglers into groups with particular characteristics; male / female, tournament / non-tournament, and thus likely to be more similar in attitudes and behavior. Once the angler population is partitioned variously to form subgroups of managerial significance, profiles include demographic characteristics, avidity measures, participation and other behavioral measures, management preferences, expenditures, as well as satisfaction measures (Ditton, 2004).(Sershen, 2008)      This subgroup can be described as Male / Female and non tournament. The binding characteristics of this type of behavior can be identified by considering but a few things; -How much time does the individual contribute to angling related activities. -How much money is spent on fishing related things. -How the individual negotiates barriers to angling.      Given that this is a qualitative measure there is no need for a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) assessment however a better description of the profile is necessary.         “Sub-worlds can segment around various sources or conditions (Strauss 1984). These include; spatial distinctions, particular lakes or rivers, management regimes, i.e. – trophy fisheries, technology and skill, ideology, intersections with other social worlds to create a new fishing sub-world.         Sub-worlds include strangers, tourists, regulars, and insiders and are based on social proximity to knowledge about the social world and activities they’re in.        Sub-worlds can be identified by four characteristics; orientation, experience, relationships, and commitment.  These may not be linear or inevitable and they do not assume that everyone moves from a stranger to an insider (Ditton, 2004).       Sub-worlds can also be described as trout anglers, fly anglers, bass angler, rough- fishers, trophy anglers, or flats anglers.  Each niche provides its own community with its own politics and perspective on participation on the activity.  Bass anglers may not socialize with carp anglers.  Carp anglers may socialize with all anglers.  The dimension of the activity is determined by the insider sub-world that the participant determines to be appropriate for their lifestyles.  It is their interpretation of their world(Sershen, 2008). “      An angler is well rounded when narrowing focus to gain skill in one aspect of angling before moving on.  An angler that limits activities within one sub-world can become pompous and arrogant. Using Tilden’s Principles,  the angler could be described as someone whom only eats McDonald’s and only snacks on Doritos.  This is not something that is glamorous or giving.  It is something that should be of concern. I have some video from the day of which I will be adding shortly.