It’s National Go Fishing Day! Here’s How To Get Started

This is a quick, easy way to get your feet wet, so to speak

By kncitom on June 18, 2020

It’s no secret that right along side radio, fishing is a passion of mine. Below is a landlocked king salmon I picked up just last weekend on Folsom lake. 


I’ve done it my whole life; I can’t even remember the first time I held a rod in my hand. Some of earliest and best memories are getting out on the water before sunup with my dad and older brother and then later with my own kids. Even my wife has started going with me! 

Because I wear my addiction on my sleeve, I get asked surprisingly often how to get into fishing. Many friends, co-workers and even an occasional listener have hit me up because they’d like to learn, or they’d like to teach their kids to fish. And while I’m always happy to take someone out in the boat, that’s not always practical, or the best introduction- because boats and fishing from them is a whole other beast. And the fact is, you don’t need a boat. There are a ton of places in Northern California where you can fish from shore, and do quite well, too.

So, what’s the best way to start?


You can spend a lot of money really fast learning how to fish, especially if you’re trying to do it on your own. So go to an outdoor store like Fisherman’s Warehouse or Bass Pro Shops, put your embarrassment aside, and tell them you’re interested in getting started. They can set you up with a basic rig- rod, reel, tackle- that will be effective and cost-effective. Trust me. There will still be plenty of time later to blow money on all the bright, shiny lures. I’ve always said the number one thing most lures catch are fishermen.

Another, albeit more expensive way is to go with a guide. Some are pretty secretive about their techniques but most will willingly share what they know. Ask ahead to see if they don’t mind showing you how and what you’re doing. And with a guide, you will more than likely catch fish, which is a huge plus for kids (or adults) with short attention spans! There are a multitude of guides in the area. One of the best, in my opinion (and no this is not a paid endorsement of any kind) is James Netzel with Tight Lines Guide Service. Look him – or any of the dozens of others out there – up. 

Or maybe the easiest way, especially if you know next to nothing about fishing..?  You can learn the basics with California Fish and Wildlife’s “Fishing in the City” program. Unfortunately it’s sidelined for the moment due to Covid-19 concerns but look into it anyway so when it comes back, you’ll be ready.  Fish and Wildlife’s website explains that the program gives folks “an opportunity to learn how to fish, and to fish close to home. Ponds are stocked with trout in winter and catfish the summer.” Best part? All gear is provided and there are volunteers on hand who can help with the catching, cleaning, all of it. You do need a license if you’re 16 or older but there are also statewide free fishing days that can help you circumvent that. Keep checking back with Fish and Wildlife’s website. You can access the Fish In The City page, here

Fishing is a wonderful way to get outdoors and spend quality time with the family. And fresh caught fish always tastes better- especially if it was caught by you.

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