For the first 30 years I fished, I experimented with keeping logs. I would often start a detailed log, keep at it for a month, before slacking off and leaving it blank. But a couple years back, I got back into it.
See, a lot of people fly fish for a lot of different reasons. Relaxation, the scenery, relieving stress, hanging with friends, and so on. I do fly fish for all these reasons, but I’ve got to say, the biggest reason I fly fish is to catch fish. If I’m not catching fish, I’m not having as good a time as I want to. I’m greedy, I know, but I love catching fish. And keeping logs help me catch more fish.
Today, every time I return from a fishing trip, be it for an hour at a week, I write up a report. I note the numbers and size of the fish I catch (usually just a close guess – I don’t actually measure/weigh most of the fish I catch), the weather, time of day and date, location, hot flies, what was hatching and other details.
Personally, I use a computer program a programmer buddy of mine made for me, stemming from an existing program called “FishersLog”. FishersLog is really popular among spin fishermen, but I had to change a few things to make bit more fit to the kind of fishing I do. That said, these online programs typically cost some money (not too much) so even just a pen and paper works fine.
Not everyone enjoys this. That’s cool. I do it because it’s sort of a game for me… check back to see what was hatching at what time, and use the past patterns to catch fish now. And I definitely have caught more fish since I started keeping logs. Only problem is I don’t take pictures, pretty much ever. I’m trying to get better with this, but I’ve always had a hard time taking pictures whole fishing, because they pretty much all look the same! I don’t need hundreds of pictures of average stockie trout! That’s a different post though…
So do you keep a fishing log?