I can state with complete certainty that the fish mount in the photo below is my new favorite fish mount. I’m also incredibly jealous of it, even though it’s only a 5-inch pinfish. To the die-hard saltwater angler, a pinfish is nothing but a means of fooling a grouper, king mackeral, tarpon, or cobia. To 4-year-old Henry Welch, the son of friend and photographer Nathaniel Welch, a 5-inch pinfish is something he’ll never forget, because it was the first fish he ever caught. And what better way to make sure your son never forgets that fish than to pony up for a mount?
I say I’m jealous because I begged ad nauseum to have almost every single fish I caught from the time I was Henry’s age mounted. Every time I caught a trout slightly larger than the average stocker, or a 14-inch largemouth, or my first dogfish in the salt, I asked my dad again. He said no until I was 19, when finally I caught a big trout on a fly I tied and had it mounted as a birthday present. Much like tattoos, I find mounts very addicting, so let this be a warning to Nathaniel: you gave Henry a taste at a young age, so don’t be surprised if in a few years he wants his first striper hanging next to the Ninja Turtles poster in his room. At least we hope he does, right?
All kidding aside, is this a great way to fuel a fishing passion in your kid or what? Some day down the road, I might copy this move and not make my son wait 19 years to decorate his wall with fishy goodness.