October 13, 2009
Cermele: Which Fishing Cult is the Most Insane?
By Joe Cermele
With striper season just beginning to take shape in the Northeast, I'm starting to get in that mode where I check tackle shops reports 3,000 times a day. My stomach knots up a bit every time I get a cell phone call from a friend who is more than likely on the beach while I'm at work. I go to bed at night wondering if I should have gone fishing and if the morning reports will tell me working all day on a couple hours sleep would have been justified.
Without question, striper fishermen (surfcasters in particular) are one of the most insanely dedicated groups of anglers out there. During the spring and fall, sleep means nothing, schedules are dictated by tidal movement, and nary a thought is given to calling into work sick when the bite's on. Nor is any thought given to putting yourself in death zones of brutal waves and slick rocks. But they are not the only bunch of nuts.
Muskie fishermen are just as bad, if not worse. They are the only cult of guys I know willing to cast to the same spot for hours and hours on end waiting for just one strike. Sometimes it comes, but more often it doesn't. Not to mention, the lures and spinners getting thrown are enough to wrench your arms from the socket after ten minutes of fishing. These men are haunted by misses and swirls. They mumble to themselves and spend ridiculous amounts of time tinkering with bucktails, blades, and weights hoping to achieve the perfect lure.
The steelhead cult deserves a nod here, too. Yes, the Great Lakes guys are whacky, but I'm talking more about the West Coast fellas always on the quest for pure-strain, ocean-running steel. Largemouth? Eh, I feel almost like the species is too widespread to be the same kind of cult. Marlin? Yeah, but all that requires is lots of money.
Who gets your vote for most off their rockers? Who did I miss? - JC