I Did It Anyway Bowfishing

Bondo Boat and author with a carp. Although this photo was from a lake in Tennessee, it shows the author's boat and outfit.

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 I will do a short video on this theme, but the backstory is interesting. Georgia’s Department of Natural Resources has cut its budget to the extent that staff is short and facilities are being closed or operated for briefer periods. 

 Since December I had been trying to relicense “Bondo Boat,” but although it had been registered every year for more than a decade, the serial number scratched onto the fiberglass hull by the manufacturer was no longer considered sufficient. A new number had to be assigned by a ranger who needed to visit my house and see the boat. By the time all this was done and I could legally operate the boat, more than a month of good bowfishing had already passed. The day after the boat was “legal” I got my stuff together and went to one of my favorite areas at the Oconee Springs State Park in Central Georgia. 

Steve Nelson bowfishing from Bondo Boat in Sprague Lake, Washington. This design with its molded-in side stabilizers is one of the few boats that is stable enough to stand up in and bowfish.

  I did it anyway bowfishing 

Got off to a late start – went anyway. 

Oconee Springs Park closed – went anyway. 

Terrible, narrow, rocky launch area – launched anyway. 

Boat motor would not start – went anyway. 

Bowfishing area two miles up the pond – paddled up anyway. 

Had new bow and reel – used anyway. 

Could not hit fish – tried anyway. 

Shot a good carp. Line tangled on underwater branches – recovered anyway.  

Long paddle back against wind – got there anyway.

Ice cold beer covered in carp slime – drank it anyway.  

Late getting home – put boat away anyway. 

Got dark – cleaned fish anyway. 

 Done – anyway I had to do it. 

  Daylight solo bowfishing is labor intensive. Many shot opportunities are lost because of the need to put down the paddle, pick up the bow and shoot. Wind helps and hurts. The chop makes it more difficult to see the fish.  If you are having to paddle hard to make headway, you will often approach the fish too fast to shoot. The best method is to get upwind and let the boat drift over the fish. 

  This is not high-production bowfishing, but is fun and “good sport” while providing some useful upper body exercise for an older guy (me) who needs it. For those who don’t want to get this “physical” a foot operated trolling motor works well. 

 For more information check out my book, “Practical Bowfishing,”  on my website, www.hoveysmith.com. The book is out of print, but you may order using the PayPal link below the book description. Prepaid mail orders will also be processed. Send a check in the amount of $20.00 to  Wm. Hovey Smith, 1325 Jordan Mill Pond Rd.,  Sandersville, GA 31082,

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