Play the lottery…

It may seem like an oversimplification, but often times the difference between heading home with an empty camera and having plenty of fish stories to tell boils down to the same principles as winning the lottery.

What is the best way to win the lottery? Play more tickets and increase your odds of getting the numbers right. So many times I see people through a few casts, lay the rod across their lap, sigh and look around. Then they want to change lures and repeat the process all over again only to continue to come up empty handed.

Every cast is a lottery ticket and the fish you are casting to are the prize. The more casts you make, the better your odds at getting a fish to hit the lure. You can’t accurately say that a lure isn’t working until  you’ve made an adequate number of casts with it in the right areas and under conditions which that particular lure works best. If you’re casting top water lures on a day when the water temps are cold and the fish are laying deep, you’re not likely to get them to rise up. If you’re casting a quiet soft plastic lure on a day that the water is cloudy and visibility is way down, you aren’t giving yourself the edge.

On the other hand, if the water is cloudy and cold and the fish are deep, casting a noisy, flashy spinner bait and letting it sink down low gives you an edge. Keep casting (playing lottery tickets) and eventually you’re going to find the sweet spot and get a reaction strike when you put the lure within reach of a fish and they go for it!

Of course, some days, the conditions are all wrong and the fish are lethargic and unlikely to move, but that’s why we call it ‘fishing’ and not ‘catching’. If you were guaranteed to catch fish all the time, though, you’d get bored and not bother.

So check your strategy and keep casting-the tough days require persistence and tenacity; even a blind hog finds an acorn now and again!

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About Gil

Fishing guide and owner of Greasy Creek Outfitters ( and interested in tent and rv camping, extreme weather camping, mysterious tales and much more as well, of course!
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