Over the years, I’ve thought long and hard about what attracts people to the things that they are passionate about. Some love opera and the arts, while others devote their lives to collecting and cataloging orchids. And still others like to fish. Why is this? Is it genetics, or up-bringing, or the influence of one special person, or one landmark event? Or all of the above? Scientists and scholars have debated this question for ages. The undeniable fact is, once these inclinations are formed, they cannot be ignored, and often guide the course of people’s lives.
Fishing has been an omnipresent influence in my life. It has introduced me to most of my good friends, and allowed me to enjoy countless days afield with my family. And it has taken me to more beautiful places than I’d ever imagined. Without fishing, I might never have seen the sunrise over Allagash Lake, or paddled across Aialik Bay in Alaska, or snorkeled the barrier reefs in Belize.
As a guide, I have the opportunity to share my passion for fishing with other people, and introduce them to some of my special places. This is a great privilege, and a great responsibility. I’ve spent nearly 30 years fishing at least 60 days per season in Maine, and am not even close to getting tired of it. That’s because I am constantly discovering new favorite places to fish. These places, and the people I get to share them with, is what I like most like about fishing. Because for me, fishing, and the outdoors in general, serve both as a tonic, and a road map, for navigating my way through life in our modern world. Hopefully, we can spend a few days on this journey together.
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Many men go fishing all their lives without knowing that it’s not the fish they are after.