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My First Successful Fishing Experience at Marine Park in Vancouver, Washington

This past weekend my boyfriend and I went down by the Columbia River which serves as a border dividing the states of Oregon and Washington. On the Oregon side is the metropolitan city of Portland, and on the Washington side is the suburb city of Vancouver. 

There are several city parks on the Washington side that border the river, but after stopping by and scoping out each one, we settled on Marine Park. Marine Park is located on SE Marine Park Wy & Columbia Way off of Highway 14 on Exit #1 situated right across Portland International Airport. 

The park area spans 26 acres and offers many opportunities for recreational activities. The park includes boat launch ramps, picnic areas, ball fields, play equipment, and the park is also a part of the Waterfront River Renaissance Trail. Also, since this park is located right alongside the Columbia River, there are also beaches and areas where people can fish off of. 

The view from the park is also very scenic, where off to the east you can see Mount Hood majestically towering amidst the sprawl of evergreen land. The park is open from 7 AM to dusk and there are no fees with the exception for those who want to utilize the boat launch ramps.

I have gone fishing before, but I have never successfully caught a fish since I just started getting into it. However, I caught my first fish while fishing at Marine Park! I used a four foot spinning reel and rod and used corn as bait.  

The reason why I used corn as bait is because at that time I did not have a proper fishing license yet, and since I didn't have one I was only allowed to fish for carp and corn serving is a bait is more suitable for catching carp as opposed to using a lure. We chose to fish off of a rocky portion on the right side of boat launches so that we wouldn't get in the way of boaters coming in and out. 

The water is shallower there and several times we got our lines snagged in between the rocks. At one point early one I felt a tug on my line but apparently the fish didn't fully bite and it got away. After about half an hour later, I was just about to give up hope of catching a fish when I felt a strong tug on my line. I hurriedly began reeling it in and sure enough I had caught a fish! 

It turned out to be a 14-inch smallmouth bass! I was so elated! The fish was a fighter, but my boyfriend and I managed to get a hold of it so we could take pictures of me and my catch. Since bass have very small and dull teeth, I was able to hold it by pressing my thump inside of its mouth without getting hurt. Afterwards, we had to let it go back into the river since I wasn't supposed to be fishing for any type of fish other than carp. 

However, the experience of actually catching a fish and the whole process from start to end was very, very thrilling. I look forward to going back to the area and see if I can another fish again and hopefully even more than just one!

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