BassParade: Rants

Rant: Bank Fishermen Suck

As you may have read here on the Parade, spent quite a bit of time on the bank in “0-11” fishin’ with my kids – due to boat logistical issues that my son has said “better be” fixed by the spring….

He’s right, but what I mean by the title of this post is a couple things.

1. Everywhere we go, and I do mean everywhere, these worm- and minnow-drowners (can you drown a minnow?) leave their junk. Everywhere.

Line, hooks and hook packs, styrofoam worm cups, cans, bottles, lighters (yes, we carry as much as we can back to the truck). What do their houses look like? Or their vehicles?

This is so bad that The New York Times recently had an article about discarded fishing line strangling birds in Central Park, which if you’re unfamiliar with NYC is one of the only places with trees on Manhattan Island.

BFD? Nope. The city folks who read that paper believe every word, so now anglers are bird-killers.

2. Bank fishermen don’t give a crap about regs.

As if the litter wasn’t enough to show the vast chasm between the bank and boat cultures, here’s a case in point: Every New Year’s Day I make it a point to go out and hunt or fish. Now that my kids are of age, I do it with them, so we went a-fishin’. This time for trout.

We’re on these protected trout waters – artificials only – and we’re not catching a thing. Trout not being the smartest fish and no other fishermen around, I’m wondering what’s going on. On our way back to the car, I get my answer.


Yep, there’s a father and his three son about to start fishing with bait – right by a tree that has the poster with the regs. Guy is such a gem he tries to hide the bait under his arm as we pass. Further down we see some bobbers caught in trees.

Who are bank fishermen? That guy, teaching “outdoor values” to his kids.

Hate to tar all bank bait-slingers (really), but in an era when seeing a game warden is as rare as being visited by space aliens – and when the city people control the regs – somethin’s gotta be done.

Police your own, bankies!

[Few deep breaths and I’m good.]



  1. Avidbasser

    January 5, 2012 at 11:51 am

    Yep, I agree. Then, when you approach them about their trashy ways they want to fight or shoot you.

  2. Brandon

    January 5, 2012 at 12:08 pm

    Fishing my local Res. during the closed season and a bank fisherman yells at me. “Check this out” pulls a dead 4lbr out of his bucket. Told him it was the closed season and he looked at me like I had 5 heads. They are either ignorant about the laws or dont care.

    • Tumblebug

      January 5, 2012 at 1:32 pm

      “They are either ignorant about the laws or dont care.”

      or both.

  3. Chad Keogh

    January 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    I think that bank anglers (for the most part) are meat fishermen. They aren’t there for the sport. They are there to catch dinner.

    Why they don’t give a crap about littering or poaching, I don’t understand. But I guess that’s because I’m not one of them.

  4. Jared Burgess

    January 5, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    Unfortunately my bet is that THOSE bankies aren’t reading much bassin literature, much less “the best, worst and funniest” 😉
    I was actually chasing trout from the bank on the 1st as well – caught some good ones (for SC). DNR office is just down the road so we normally do and did see “the man”, and all the bank beaters were walkin the line.

  5. J.D.

    January 5, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    Hmmm…I bet if you could collect all the “bass trash” (line, empty worm bags, cups, etc) discarded by boaters scattered along the banks on any given body of water and compared it to the concentration of trash found at bank fishing hotspots on the same body of water, I think it would be pretty even. Just like there are inconsiderate bank fisherman, there are inconsiderate boaters…

    As for not following regs, the same argument holds true.

  6. Tom

    January 5, 2012 at 2:36 pm

    Speaking of trash…who ever told some anglers that the water is for putting out your cigarette butts? Now that’s a disgrace.

  7. Rich Arnold

    January 5, 2012 at 3:17 pm

    Good Rant! I could go on for days about these Bankies on Guntersville! Was in the boat with a pro during an Elite Series tourney while this nameless pro was fishing the bridge going into Brown’s. This Bankie starts throwing at the pro’s boat and starts mouthing off to the pro. The Bankie was catching one short Bass after the other and tossing them in a pile up on the bank. The pro told the Bankie to slow his roll and cut the crap before he reported him to the fish and game. I picked up my cell and faked a call to the Tourn Director reporting him. He was gone within five minutes. One question about Bankies: can’t they see that telephone cable? Why is there always 12 miles of fishing line and six dozen bobbers hanging from it?

  8. Randy S Breth

    January 5, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Littering idiots (“bankies” boaters, waders, whatever) suck.
    Gives all of us fishermen a bad rep.

  9. Darin

    January 6, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    Jay, I think the best thing about this post is not the fact that you’re pointing out others’ errors, it’s that you and your kids take the time to pick up what you can to leave that place better than when you found it. My family tries to do the same thing. Unfortunately, you can’t change all of those people abusing the area, but you can do something to improve it. Don’t give up, don’t quit trying. Thanks for doing what you’re doing and be proud of what you’re teaching your kids so they don’t grow up to be one of those abusers. Good job.

  10. Alex Voog

    January 7, 2012 at 8:03 pm

    I spend a serious amount of time bank bassin’ and the “bucket heads”, as we call them, leave a truly astounding amout of trash and line on the banks/trees/water. I pick up what fishing line I can, whenever I can, and in the last 10 years I guesstimate I’ve removed at least 5 miles of line that was discarded. That may even be an underestimation. The Illinois DNR and local preserve police are GROSSLY understaffed by disasterous political mismanagement of funds and enforcement is very backburnered. Confrontation with these bucketheads is pointless and actually potentially dangerous here in the fine Chicago/Cook County area.

  11. Scott

    January 7, 2012 at 8:54 pm

    To all those who are making crass generalizations about bank anglers not being out for sport or giving a bleep about regulations and/or the environment, please accept my sincerest and most heartfelt GO [expletive deleted] YOURSELF! Why don’t you go ahead and say all southerners are uneducated [email protected]$$es too, so you cover the whole gamut of things to be wrong about as it relates to me.

    You honestly think because you have enough money to buy a boat, that it makes you a more upright citizen of an angler? Shove that boat where the sun doesn’t shine!

    I am a bank-bound angler in the Appalachian region of Virginia (the part where all the stereotypes of hillbillies are born). I have two bachelor’s degrees, and with 14 more classes I’d have 3 more B.A. degrees. I speak four languages. I am a certified web and graphic designer, and a mobile audio/video/security technician. I have caught 58 species of fish with aspirations of 200.

    I make a regular habit of picking up litter when I fish. I educate other anglers on regulations and littering.

    Don’t get me started on the superiority complex of boat-bound anglers. I couldn’t tell you how many times a boat has come through at a high speed when I was fishing and created waves and stirred up silt, making fishing impossible and forcing me to either move or quit.

    Boatbound anglers who believe yourselves to be cut from a better cloth than bankbound anglers, I have had it with your snobbery.

    • Rich Arnold

      January 9, 2012 at 9:09 am

      Wow…didn’t you read the rant? We are complaining about litterbugs. If that is not you, then that’s great and the rant was not directed at you! There are boaters who throw garbage over the side of their boats too, but that wasn’t the rant…Bank fisherman were in question. However, your rant revealed some serious inferiority complex issues that you may want to talk about with a professional. Nobody has claimed to be better than anyone else. Just tired of the litterbugs and in this specific case, the ones on the bank. Congrats on all the education and success in web design and fishing.

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Gitcha Bassin' Fix

The best, worst and funniest in bassin'! Jay Kumar is the guy who created, co-hosted Loudmouth Bass with Zona, was a B.A.S.S. senior writer and a whole lot more in bassin™. Make sure you sign up for the BassBlaster email!

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