July 15, 2011

The Best Way to Learn the Marsh

My ability to do this has made me a better angler in a shorter amount of time.Enter your text here...

There is no set way of doing things. I'm not scared to pick up a different reel, try a new area or use a different lure.

It's possible my passion for inshore fishing will die when I stop trying new things.

With that said, I will tell you my greatest trait as an inshore angler: My ability to leave my comfort zone.

You have to man up and face the marsh

Before enjoying high-tech gear, I learned how to get the job done with the bare minimum. I learned to come out of my comfort zone.

This is what this blog post is about. It's a reality check and a pep rally. If you're not serious about inshore fishing, then don't bother reading any further!

But if you are reading this, then maybe you are serious about your love for the vast prairie marsh. And if you're that serious, you may have tried what I am going to talk about.

Man smoking cigar in the swamp

Open a Can of Man and own that marsh!

When I run through the marsh, I rarely use a GPS. I usually leave it turned off so I can memorize the route better.

Turn left at the high patch of grass, right at the roseau, left again by the morning glories.

I keep two on the boat, but for emergency purposes more so than navigational.

Unless the visibility is just awful, I can make it out to Breton and Gosier Islands without GPS. Hell, I don't even use a compass.

Yet I know where I am going. I know where all the hazards to navigation are, too.

Scouting Exploring Discovering Fishing Spots

Captain Devin will take time out to scout. Here he is cautiously putting down water he has not visited in years.

I just got out there and did it.

I would run the marsh all day, looking for new stuff and trying new things. I wasn't scared to do so. I just accepted the trip wasn't about catching a limit of trout and was more about learning the marsh. It's tough for me to do that.

Were there days I was frustrated that the fish didn't show up? Absolutely. But I came out on top by making it part of my learning curve.

Do you think I learned the shallow water areas of the Spoil Canal from someone else? Hell no! I went out there and got stuck!

And then I learned how to get unstuck.

The marsh does not have traffic lights, warning signs and rest stops.

It's a place for you to fulfill your maximum potential, but that grass and water is merciless if you screw up.

The best way to learn is to put yourself out there.

GPS's, Google Earth KML files, maps, satellite photos and smart phones are great, but they will never beat experience.

This is me motivating you. Are you ready to go hit that marsh? It's the angler, not the gear!

That experience is waiting for you out there, don't keep it waiting any longer.

Captain Devin

About the Author

Devin is a former fishing guide and lifelong inshore angler. He founded Louisiana Fishing Blog in 2012 to share his ideas as a charter captain and still writes in it today. Since then he's created a fishing university — LAFB Elite — where he teaches inshore anglers how to safely navigate Louisiana's coast and catch more fish.

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