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Time with Hunter at Waveland

Posted by todd on May 7, 2013

My 8-yr old son, Hunter, and I ventured out to Lake Waveland last weekend to participate in the Fishers of Men Legacy event.  Over the last 4 years, it's a trail that has grown near to my heart as it brings two of the most important things in my life together and to our youth - fishing and Jesus.  This time, though, Hunter approached me at the Indianapolis Boat, Sport, and Travel Show about doing the event with him for the first time.  He asked if we could camp out, make a fire with s'mores, and go fishing in the tournament.  It fit our schedule, and we decided to do it.

We made it to Waveland on Friday afternoon, where the Fishers of Men crew and the Red Dirt Bait Company hosted a pre-tournament meeting and cookout for the kids.  They all received tackle packs and prizes, and two teams shared their experience from the National Championship at Pickwick from July 2012.  All of the kids were excited to hit the lake the next day and catch their 3-fish limit.

We met our good friends Steve and Matt Herning and shared a campsite that night.  I'm pretty sure it was the highlight of Hunter's trip - building a fire, roasting marshmellows and hot dogs, and making his favorite snack - s'mores.  We camped out in the Suburban Suites and had some great dad-son time together.  It's a time I'll always remember and cherish.

We woke up the next morning at 6AM to see 3 deer walking across the field in front of our truck.  Seeing God's creation and being amongst His creatures is one of the things that I enjoy most about working in the outdoors.  Hunter was excited too.  We made it down to the ramp at 7AM for blast-off and Hunter couldn't wait to race to our first stop.  We ended up catching several keepers in the first hour, and Hunter ended up catching our biggest fish of the day.  He got to learn how to cull and learned the importance of fish care during the process. 

We passed several teams throughout the day, and I knew there were a few solid 3-fish limits as well as some big fish that would come to the scales.  Hunter and I didn't think we had a big enough limit to win, but we had tried our best.  He casted all day long and only took a few short breaks - I was really proud of him.  He went to make a cast late in the day, and the whole rod and reel went flying into the lake and sank to the bottom.  After about a dozen casts with a crankbait, I was able to snag the line and pull his rod and reel back to the boat.  You should have seen his face - priceless!!

Our family came over for the weigh-in, and much to our suprise, we weighed in a 3-fish limit for 8.90# and took the lead which eventually was the winning weight.  Hunter's face lit up like the sun and he was so proud.  This event wasn't about winning for me, but rather having a wonderful experience with my son and the other kids and parents who were there.  Without a doubt, it was one of the highlights of my year and a time I'll always remember!