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Rods and reels: Students take up fishing

By Ashley Lee and Larry Ye Feb. 3, 2021

Jonathan Ke Photo

Although sports such as football, basketball and soccer may be among the most popular, the school’s students play a wide variety of other sports that are lesser known. As a fisherman, Senior Anthony Fong is part of this lesser known cohort, but still enjoys the sport very much. When Fong began fishing as a five-year-old, he did not expect it to become a passion. Originally, his intention was to follow in his dad’s footsteps, but Fong now enjoys fishing because it provides him with the opportunity to catch different varieties of fish and improve his various baiting techniques.

“My dad took me to Vasona Lake park where I caught my first fish. I really enjoyed the experience and now it is an activity we enjoy together. Once, my dad and I each hooked some giant bay rays from the wharf in Santa Barbara! They were so big we could barely hold them up. Another memorable time was seeing a Mackerel feeding frenzy in San Diego,” Fong said.

Fong usually fishes two times a week at local parks like Almaden Lake, Chesbro Reservoir or Vasona Reservoir, biking to local spots with his fishing rods strapped to a special rack on the back of his bicycle. During vacations, he also enjoys fishing at saltwater spots like Santa Cruz, Half Moon Bay and San Francisco’s Ocean Beach. Although Fong fished on freshwater during his childhood and continues to do so today, he now prefers saltwater fishing because there are more unique species of fish to catch in the ocean.

During quarantine, Fong made a YouTube channel to document his fishing adventures and teach his viewers the fundamentals of fishing. He posts videos on a variety of topics, ranging from catching sand fleas to making your own fish hooks. He also has an Instagram account where he shares fishing content to better connect with fellow fishers and .

“I utilized some of the skills I learned in the school’s photography class. In order to make higher quality posts for my followers, I had to teach myself how to weave together clips and edit videos,” Fong said.

Similar to Fong, Senior Reese Tran also fishes as a hobby. Tran began fishing in middle school after his friend, Senior Connor Orth, convinced him to begin the sport. After learning the basics from Orth, Tran began fishing on his own, sometimes bringing family and other friends along with him. Although Tran is now an experienced fisher, he had difficulties as a beginner. Once, he bought the wrong type of bait, so he was unable to catch fish for over a month. Now a more seasoned fisherman, he advises aspiring fishers to do their research first so they buy the correct type of bait before going out to fish.

“I enjoy fishing because I am able to travel to different locations and catch new types of fish. Waiting for fish to bite while listening to the sounds of nature is also really peaceful,” Tran said.

Even though Tran is currently only involved in recreational fishing, he looks forward to participating in fishing competitions when he has more free time. Fong and Tran both enjoy fishing as a method of destressing. Not only do they like to reel in fish and learn about their catches, but they also appreciate the calming stillness by the water. Whether fishing will remain just a pastime or become a competitive hobby for the two, both Fong and Tran plan to continue fishing well into the future.


About the Contributors

Ashley Lee

Feature School and Community School Editor

Ashley Lee is a junior at Leland High School and the Community News and Feature School page editor for The Charger Account. During her free time, she enjoys baking, traveling, and trying new cuisine.

Larry Ye

Staff Writer

Lawrence Ye is a sophomore at Leland High School and a staff writer for the Leland Charger Account. He likes to swim and travel and loves his pets, Simon and Meatball.

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