Following My Roots
by Clint Piatt
Fishing is just the way I was brought up.
I thought that answering the question, Why We Catfish, would be a quick and simple task. With more reflection and thought, I quickly found out that there is quite a lot more to it.
My name is Clint Piatt. I am 37 years old and I am from Mechanicsburg IL. The “We” in my story are my fishing partner and daughter, Sadie Piatt age 7, and my wife Tonya Piatt age 36.
I think the main reason why we fish is because that’s just the way I was brought up. Taking a day off from school or going out on a Saturday with my dad to fish a farm pond was just what we did. If it wasn’t going fishing on the weekend it was waking up to watch Bill Dance, Orlando Wilson, or Roland Martin on TV.
I grew up in a time when there was a lot more emphasis on spending time together as a family than there is today. Why we fish is because it gives us an opportunity to spend time together where we can relax and enjoy each other’s company.
Fishing is an activity where my wife, my daughter, and I can get out and have some fun without spending a lot of money to do it. It also gives us a chance to get our daughter into nature and show her not only the fish, but the birds, and turtles, and snakes, and other critters. All those things are out there in the great outdoors and she never would see them being at the house.
I’ve got to admit that things have definitely changed a lot. As a youth, I was fishing with my dad using Zebco rods and reels and 10-pound test line. Now the equipment is different but the goal is still the same—get out and have some fun!
Why we catfish is also about getting to travel to different places. I’ve fished the Red River in Canada for giant channel cats, Wheeler Lake in Alabama for giant blue cats, and tons of places in between.
I started tournament fishing a few years back and that has also been one of the reasons why we catfish. My daughter and I look forward to the Catfish For Veterans tournament every year on Lake Springfield in Illinois. The Twisted Cat Series and SeaArk Owner’s Tournament have allowed me to meet people I would not have met otherwise.
For my family and me there really isn’t just one answer for why we fish. We fish for fun. We fish to be closer as a family. We fish for food. We fish just to be outdoors and enjoy everything that Mother Nature has to offer us. At the end of the day, we fish because it’s just how we were raised. It’s something I wish more people would get into and it’s something I hope my daughter will pass on as well.