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Resolutions - An Outdoorsmans List

Ice fishing in Haliburton, Ontario, Canada
Yours truly trying to get artsy on a recent ice fishing trip

It’s a bit late to call this my New Years resolutions but nevertheless its that train of thought that got me thinking about a few focus area’s for improving my outdoors abilities and enjoyment.

Here are my 3-focus area’s:

Be curious about how others are catching fish:

I love learning about new techniques, tactics, spots or species. I have always been that way – whatever hobby or interest grabs me I tend to dive right in – my wife calls it Hobby OCD. This year I plan on spending more time reading, watching YouTube and interacting with other anglers as much as I can. When I launched Northern Jacks, I had a grand dream of turning it into a revenue generating hobby – a side hustle. So far that has not materialized and that’s okay. A benefit I didn’t plan on and one that has been awesome – connecting with anglers and outdoorsman like myself. The number of tips, new lakes or tactics to try has been overwhelming in a good way. So here to spending more time on forums, blogs, watching Jay Siemens videos Jay Siemens YouTube and trying to get more “Tales from” articles up. Tales From Posts

Fly in fishing blog in Northern Ontario, Canada
Colin with a walleye caught in "Smedleys Bay" - a bit of internet intel pre trip

Learn Some Critical Skills

While I would consider myself more familiar in the outdoors than most, the more I watch and read I know there are 3 key area’s I can improve. 1) Knots – I know a few good knots for fishing and some basics for camping its not enough. Lately I have been finding myself watching YouTube videos or trying to improve (how much of a geek am I) – new ones so far – Canadian Jam Knot, Double Uni Knot, and the Taut Line Hitch – more to come! 2) Fire Making – I am fine to get a good fire going in the right conditions and the right tools. But can I get a fire going in winter with only a fire steel? Can I do it in wet conditions? Can I make it quickly? I am not sure but plan on practising this winter. 3) Navigation – I don’t really know basic compass and map orientation. I have never really needed it on our trips and typically rely on electronics – I want to change that this year.

Embrace the Experience, Not the Outcome

I grew up playing a lot of competitive sports – soccer, hockey, golf and football to name a few. I tend to think of things in terms of winning and losing, even fishing or camping trips and its silly. I know that there have been times where I haven’t enjoyed a trip as much as I should have because I was counting fish or kilometres or unhappy that I didn’t cook the perfect. This year I plan on embracing the experience and being grateful for the opportunities to spend time outside. Over the past few years, I have really leaned on time spent outside to battle the stress, boredom and anxiety that has come with the pandemic (and middle age?)– I want to remember the benefit is getting away from it all, spending times with good people and enjoying nature.

Fly in fishing blog in Northern Ontario,Canada
Views like these are priceless

So – there is my list of resolutions for 2022 - hopefully I can achieve them all but honestly, I will be good if I hit 50%. I need something to do next year as well lol


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