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From the President: The Oklahoma Crappie Angler

How many fish did you catch, how big, well mine was……….

Is this really how we start talking about our crappie fishing adventures?  Sure, we all have stories, and it’s great to share them, but we need people to tell them to and places to go to find those people.
You will hear me talk about growing the sport, this is what I’m talking about. Meeting new friends, encouraging and empowering them to be successful anglers. Many of you reading this have had a boat come over to you while you were fishing, and the whole time you were thinking “I sure hope he doesn’t come over here I don’t want him to see what I’m doing”.  Guess what, that “guy” in the other boat was probably me.  I make it a point to introduce myself to every crappie angler I can.

Why do I do that? Well, I have 2,500 friends on Facebook, many of which I have never met. They are awesome folks that have tons in common with me, and we never interact besides clicking the “like” button. I would like to change that. So, I come to your boat, or I stand by you on the dock, or I engage with you at the gas pump. It’s all a big plan to meet you, the Oklahoma Crappie Angler.

I was fishing Lake Eufaula one cold January day, no one else anywhere around. Then I notice a boat coming around the corner just idling about 3-4 mph.  It’s not one of those big fancy boats, its one of those “old men” boats, you know what I’m saying. The type of boat you pay attention to because the old men in it probably know way more about Crappie fishing than some of us ever will.  So, me being me, I went over and started visiting with them. We started with the normal “catching any”? They weren’t having any success, it turns out they were new to crappie fishing and were just getting out of the house trying to learn a little bit.  They had heard about long lining for crappie and had been out trolling for hours with little success. We began talking about boat control and speed, about electronics to help locate structure and fish, then we ended up discussing vertical jigging and I was able to show them some great techniques. In the end, I had a great time spending 20 minutes of day helping some great guys to become better anglers.

How many times have you heard the story of the boat never being used, or “I should just sell all my fishing stuff because I never catch anything”?  I hear it all the time. If we aren’t helping these folks become successful anglers, we are destroying our own sport. We must get more people involved and to keep them involved requires them being successful.

That is our mission statement in a nutshell: to grow the sport of crappie fishing in Oklahoma, through any and all means.  If you are interested in helping with this or just learning more about Crappie fishing, then join the club. If you are willing to do more, give me a shout and let me know how you want to be involved. There will be many opportunities coming up to get everyone involved.
And most importantly, take someone fishing.

Robert Carlile
President
Oklahoma Crappie Anglers Club

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