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Author Topic: Co-Angler pros & cons ?  (Read 5004 times)

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canvsbk

Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« on: March 15, 2006, 07:33:42 PM »

You'll have to forgive me, we lead very sheltered lives here in the SW part of the state. I've always wondered about this co angler thing, what's it really like?I've heard both good and horror stories. Aside from the $ involved and maybe you might even learn something, what's the advantage?Aren't you completely at the mercy of the guy in front?
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stackenem

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2006, 07:40:17 PM »

Im not real sure I am going to find out myself this year. I joined ABA and will be fishing the back of the boat on several lakes. The reason I am doing this is to learn about some new water that I really don't have time to prefish myself. I have fished back of the boat with lots of different people but never in a one on one tourney. But poorboy says that the ABA people are a great bunch to fish with so thats good enough for me.
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plumley

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2006, 07:57:02 PM »

Be friendly, you got something in common, fishing - start with that. You are along for the ride mostly, the boater has operational control of the boat, if you know about some safety items for the body of water share them, rocks, wires, shallows stuff like that. If fishing structure, docks, blowdowns and such, the boater will have first and probably best throw at em, learn from the boater. You get to fish used water so approach that water with a different lure, senco, fluke, tube, spinnerbait, but be aware he may move just as you throw. Do not dispair, just fish, heck fishing is easy when you don't have to figure where to go, then run the trolling motor. I've had boaters offer anything in the tackle box, When I am the boater I bring along extra stuff for the back boater just in case - stuff like a life jacket (can't go without one), food, (I get hungry once in a while), water (I get thirsty too), sunglasses and a spare hat(for the one that blew away). Trust me when I offer that the boater wants you to succeed in catching fish (but try not to beat em too bad). One rule in my boat if you hook a seat, let me remove it!
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Hooksetter

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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2006, 09:48:05 PM »

I fished as a non-boater for the first and only time last year at the ABA paper tourny on Kent Lake. I had a good time and everybody was friendly. I don't remember who I fished with but I never felt that he was back seatin me. We fished 3 or 4 of "my" spots also.

I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong but I think you are also entitled to run the TM and fish your water for half of the tournament time. I think that is the rule in the ABA. Don't quote me.

I will be fishing the Kent Lake? and the Lake St. Clair paper tournaments as a non-boater this year. I've never been on LSC in May. I am looking forward to it.
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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2006, 10:43:20 PM »

The co-angler thing isn't bad, of all of my co-angler experiences only one was bad.  Just don't go out expecting a guided trip, it's still a tournament.  You can learn a lot if you want too.  If your out to fish your own fish and win the tournament your way then go in your own boat.  When you go on someones boat it's their show.  The ABA does have that rule, I've only fished a few of their tournaments.  With some guys I've fished with in the past I'd take a dq before I let them run the boat.  Not trying to be mean, but with all the time and money involved I'm going to waste time on the water on somebody elses spots.  Thats why I bought the boat.  Luckyily the ABA divisions around here are some pretty nice guys so I haven't had any problems and probobly wouldn't mind any of those guys running the boat.  Sorry again, I have a strong opinion about this.
-Matt
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djkimmel

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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2006, 11:53:41 PM »

ABA is a pure draw - the non-boater has the opportunity to fish his/her own water and get equal time running the trolling motor I thought. Correct me if that is wrong.

FLW Outdoors events (BFL, Stren, FLW) are boater/co-angler. The boater has complete control of the fishing locations for the entire day. The boater runs the trolling motor the entire day. The boater has to fish from the front deck. The co-angler has to fish from the back deck.

Boater competes against boater. Co-angler competes against co-angler. The boater must provide fishable water for the co-angler.
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dartag

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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2006, 06:35:07 AM »

ABA is a pure draw - the non-boater has the opportunity to fish his/her own water and get equal time running the trolling motor I thought. Correct me if that is wrong.


BOAT OPERATION: Any competitor answering yes to the question: "Will you enter as a boater?" will be expected to make that boat available for the tournament. Partners must discuss sharing time for his/her selected waters prior to ooze-off. Each partner is entitled to an equal number of hours to fish his/her selected waters. Any contestant who, in the judgment of the tournament director, operates the boat in such a manner as to unfairly handicap their partner shall be disqualified. It is the responsibility of the non-boater to reimburse the boater in an amount mutually agreed. It is suggested that reimbursement be ? of fuel cost to defray daily expenses. (Based on current fuel prices and running time, cost could be from $20.00 to $50.00)



got this from the ABA web site..  POORBOY or ABA would be the one to answer this..   i fished ABA with my boat last year and never had a request to run the boat.  i always asked if they had any water they wanted to fish.. 
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McCarter

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2006, 08:43:50 AM »

That is the rule.  The non boater gets equal time to fish his/her spots and is allowed in that shared time to operate the boaters trolling motor.

In all the ABA tournaments i have fished, i have never once had a co angler request to use my trolling motor.  I offer it up everytime, and have even made a few guys take control because they have never done it before and i wanted them to experience it.

Things go surprisingly smooth at our tournaments.  We really do have a good group of people.  And 99.9% percent of the co anglers are freindly and just want to fish. 

Most of the time, they never even ask to fish different spots.  They just go with the flow. 

Its a fun trail and i highly reccomend it to everyone to check out.

PoorBoy himself :-\'
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fiker

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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2006, 09:57:22 AM »

I only have one experience fishing in a tourney. 
My boater was a complete "partner" and gentleman.
He offered to share the front deck w/ me, but I declined.
He was very conscious of fishing spots I suggested as well as his own.

I often fish out of the back of the boat w/ my friends, and I've just adjusted how I fish accordingly. 

My own boat is small.  I can't share the front deck.  When I have guests aboard and we're fishing a shore/dock line, I show them how we can both fish it by  how/where  we cast.  I expect them to.  It's not in a tournament situation so I don't feel any pressure.  By doing that my guests get a better chance of catching fish. 
I sometimes purposely don't throw to good looking spots so that they have a chance to.  If the guest is a newbie I'll even suggest where they cast their lure. 

But then again, I'm not in a competitive situation, and Im sure it's easier to be  gracious.

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smbassman

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2006, 11:00:53 AM »

I fished a season of the BFL's as a co-angler, just to see what it was like and to get an idea of what it takes to compete as a boater.  To me, it was only a learning experience and I did not get concerned with second guessing the boater's decisions or making suggestions that would make them doubt themselves.  If I had anything I thought was useful, I would tell the boater the night before and never bring it up again.  Basically, I was along for the ride.  I had two boaters that made horrible decisions (I thought), and wasted the day but I was along for the ride and I made the best of it.  Even though I managed to catch a few fish anyways, I know I could have done much better with control of the fishing spots anf the time spent on them.  But I realize that I signed up as a rider not a driver.

So if you are interested in fishing as a co-angler.  Just do it for the learning experience, fish the best you can under the cirumstances and if you have a good draw and are successful - that is just a bonus.
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Revtro

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Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #10 on: March 16, 2006, 11:29:32 AM »

One piece of advice I have for co-anglers is that regardless of what the rules state, don't push to operate the trolling motor.  Most boaters have invested a lot of money in their rig and just plain don't feel comfortable allowing someone to operate their boat based solely on their word that they can handle it.  That being said, if you are a co-angler that has a lot of experience operating a trolling motor, let your boater know.  That way, later in the day if the boater needs you to take the TM so that he can re-rig or fight a fish, he'll have some degree of confidence that you can handle it for a few seconds.  But don't push to run the motor.  This can make a boater feel very uncomfortable. 

Regardless of the tourney rules, boat owners are always a little anxious about trusting their rig to someone.  I commend PoorBoy for being willing to share his TM.  That's actually kind of rare I think.  I will offer it to someone if fishing open water where they can get some experience without getting themselves into trouble.  But in skinny water or in canals where quarters are close and there are a lot of things to run into, I always insist on running the TM unless I know the person is qualified.  So be courteous of the boaters insecurities. 

The only other advice I'd offer is Don't be Cheap!  Most boaters, the ones I've met in the ABA included, are good guys.  They're not fishing for a million dollars, so the ABA events I've tried seem pretty low key and most everyone is just there to have a good time.  But nothing can wreck the good vibe of a fun tournament day like a co-angler offering up a measly $5 for gas or forgetting altogether.  At these gas prices (and don't forget the cost of towing the boat to the lake and the 2-cycle oil which averages $20 a gallon) $5 or even $10 is an insult to a lot of guys.  You will likely run into boaters who will turn down some of the money you are offering them, but offer it anyway.  Even on a small lake, offer them $25.  It used to be common to offer $20, but especially on the Great Lakes, $20 is just a drop in the bucket.  So don't be cheap.  If they don't need the cash, they'll turn it down.  I frequently turn down offered gas money.  But when I have to drive a good distance to get to a lake, sometimes the fuel costs makes the whole thing seem 'not worth it'.  So every dollar helps.  Show them you appreciate their willingness to take you out on their rig and show you a good time.  This is a good way to end the day with a good feeling between you and the boater.
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Bassman24

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2006, 12:24:50 PM »

I was non boater/co-angler for the first 6/7 years I started fishing.  I joined a small local club out of Romeo to start learning the trade.  It was the best thing I could have done.

I believe anglers that are new to tournament fishing, whether a boater or a non-boater, should start at some club level.  Their events are usually low keyed tournaments with very little stressful situations. 

For example, just launching and retrieving the boat can be a nightmare.  Experienced anglers make this look easy most of of the time.  I am always amazed at a well ran event where 100 boats can be launch in 15 minutes.  At a club level this may be only 10 to 20 boats and is not always a rush, rush situation. 

I learned so much at the club level thatwhen I started fishing Redman(now BFL) events as a non-boater, I was not totally overwhelmed.  My first Redman was on Kerr Lake in NC and there were 232 boats...BOATS...My goodness.  It blew my mind.  I later learned a few years ago that Mike Iconnelli fished in that event.   

As Retro was stating...be courteous. Respect your boaters equipment...even if they don't.  ;)  And learn.  You will not always get a great ride, but you can always take something from the experience.  I fished on Erie one time with a guy from Chicago.  The weather was nuts with storms and he was driving right into it further away from Elizabeth Park.  But as he drove I watch him making adjustments with the steering wheel.  I asked him what he was doing that for and learned a new technique for driving my own boat. 

To me, if you are fishing as non-boater, use it to learn as much as you can at the club level or in other bigger events.  It is what makes you become a better angler in the long run.

GT
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canvsbk

Re: Co-Angler pros & cons ?
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2006, 09:07:56 PM »

Thanks for the replies. As usual, this site is quite informative.
I've never fished anything other than team and always from the front. I think I have a better understanding now, thanks again.
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