Tag Archives: Sunglasses

Tips on Learning How to Fish

Spring fishing season has arrived! If you are an inexperienced angler and would like to try fishing for the first time, follow these few tips for your preparation. Even if you are an experienced angler, these tips will refresh your memory for your fishing adventures.

Fishing License

A fishing license is one of the most important things that you will need in order to go fishing. Each state has their own rules and regulations, so it is important that you read up on them before heading out. All fishing rules and regulations will be under Fishing > Rules and Regulations in your Fishing and Wildlife Pocket Ranger® Guide. Licenses can be purchased online. Some states require you to be 18 years or older in order to obtain a fishing license.


Man fishing on a pier alone

Image: www.active.com

Choosing a place to fish can vary. Some people choose locations where they often see people fishing or local places where they may want to start. If you are a beginner and feel shy fishing in front of a heavy crowd, you may want to opt for a quiet fishing area.

You can go freshwater fishing in lakes, ponds, streams or rivers. Or you can choose saltwater fishing such as surf fishing, fishing by boat (party boat or charter boat) or bay fishing.

Time of Day During Spring Season

Two men fishing on a boat during sunset with his catch

Image: jimolive.photoshelter.com

  • Early Morning – Fish do not bite during this time because the water is cold and doesn’t heat up due to the sun being low which makes the rays bounce off the water.
  • Late Morning/Early Afternoon – Fish are biting on and off during this time because the sun’s rays start to penetrate the water. During this time, you should fish towards the downwind shoreline because the wind pushes the warmer surface water into that area.
  • Afternoon/Early Evening – There are a lot of fish eating during this time because their metabolism and digestion are high. The water is also warmer because the sun is directly above.

Fish Species

Images of different fish species

Image: pixshark.com

Focusing on fishing for a particular fish for a beginner may be too difficult, but it’s a worth a try! Here is a list of popular fish to help you choose one to catch:

  • Bass – a southeastern sport fish
  • Striped Bass – you will most likely need a boat to catch these
  • Sunfish – best catch for a beginner angler
  • Walleye and Pike – northern, cold-water lake fish
  • Catfish – vary from small to large

For a complete list of freshwater and saltwater fish, download your state’s Pocket Ranger® Fish and Wildlife Guide.


Man surf fishing pulling in his catch, clear blue water

Image: www.rancholeonero.com

Fishing in a lake from shore – Sit and wait with a bobber and bait. For this type of method, you can use inexpensive equipment.

Surf fishing from a beach – This requires heavy tackle that costs a little bit more. Catches vary day to day with this method.

Pond Fishing – Fishing at a pond can be simple, especially for beginners. It allows you to manage your skills and you may even catch a pan fish for dinner.

Boat Fishing on an Ocean – There are many boating options that are available for fishing. You can pay to go on a party boat for a half day or full day and you can use equipment and bait that is provided to you. Depending on the type of boating you choose and how big the crowd is, you can have assistance such as hooking your bait, casting and landing a fish.

Suggested Gear: 

  • Fishing Rod/Fly Rod
  • Sunglasses
  • Hat

Check out more fishing gear at our Pocket Ranger Gear Store.

Cold Weather Running

Contributed by Michael Restivo of Mike off the Map

Here in the Pacific Northwest, the cool fall days have been replaced by sudden winter blasts. If you aren’t one of the lucky people who have access to a snowboard or a pair of skis or snowshoes, the winter can be a tough season of inactivity.

I recently began to take my running more seriously, so in the fall after work I took jaunts around Green Lake in Seattle. Unfortunately, as I was hitting my stride, injury and cold weather set in. I then had to find the right solutions to be able to do some cold weather running and spend time outside. Here’s how I discovered the tools to stay active during cold weather.

One of the most important aspects of any cold weather activity involves staying dry and this is especially true when excess sweat combined with cold air can lower the body temperature. Having a good performance base layer can make all the difference, and the two aspects that are important are breathability and moisture wicking. Any cotton wear is absolutely discouraged as it soaks up any sort of water and is extremely difficult to dry. The next layer should insulate, and a fabric-like fleece can perform this job admirably. The mid-layer should perform two functions: it needs to retain warmth but it also needs to prevent the body from sweating. The third layer should be a wind and waterproof membrane. This layer has protection against wind and snow or rain. A good one should be light enough to remove as the body warms, but have slots and vents on the side to let excess heating escape.

cold weather running

Running in the winter wonderland (Photo credit: TimWilson)

An acceptable bottom would include a full-length base layer or a pair of running tights. The ideal cold weather shoe would be less ventilated than normal. Some trail runner manufacturers offer footwear armed with water and windproof fabrics, as well as lightweight membranes. Like the clothes, it’s best to avoid cotton socks and look for the wicking and breathable properties.

Accessorizing to keep warm would include a beanie to keep warmth from escaping the top of the head, and a neck gaiter when the temperature dips even further. For the hands, a light pair of membrane-covered gloves or liners will keep fingers from becoming clammy and numb.


winter_running_gear_4 (Photo credit: A Life in Balance)

When dressing for a cold weather run, remember that the more running and the more the body warms up, the more layers are going to be shed.

Venturing outside for a cold weather run without warming up and getting the body ready could be uncomfortable. When inside, begin with a series of exercises including jumping, running in place, and stretching, keeping the blood flowing and warm. When running, keep the body loose as it promotes better circulation. Keep a steady pace and if possible, try to avoid running against the wind. The first effects of hypothermia could include light-headedness, uncontrollable shivering, and dizziness along with a loss of direction. If any of these symptoms start to show up, it’s best to stay inside.

In dry air, it’s very easy to lose moisture and staying hydrated is essential. Try to avoid water that is too hot or too chilled and stick to water at room temperature with an added electrolyte powder.

While running in snow, there is an added risk of sunburn from the reflecting sunlight. Always wear sunscreen and lip balm and wear polarized sunglasses to offset the glare.

In the end, cold weather running can be exciting, adventurous, and rewarding, but especially in less than ideal conditions, it’s important not to overshoot limit or ability. If the body is in less than optimal condition, the risk for injury could be greater, so stick to running inside. However, if you’re capable of doing some winter weather running, it’s a great way to keep active in the cold months. It will certainly pay off when the spring hiking season returns.