Terry Otto: That first fish ended up hooking me

New Columbian Outdoors Reporter Terry Otto.

Sunfish were fun, but they would never be enough.

Growing up near St. Louis, I pestered my father for something beyond a cane pole so I could try for larger prey, for catfish.

On my first try with my new gear I actually caught one. It was all of 6-inches long, but I was thrilled. That little catfish had hooked me, and a lifelong passion was born.

Catfishing soon led to bass fishing, bass fishing led to walleye, walleye to trout, and trout to salmon and steelhead. Then came tuna and other saltwater fish. I just kept looking for the next big thrill.

A lifetime spent in the outdoors has honed my love of fishing and hunting to a sharp edge. Ever do I look for another challenge, another new thing to try.

This led me to writing about my love of the chase and the outdoors. It became a way for me to share my passion with others and to pass along the many things I have learned. It was a way of giving back.

And so now it is quite an honor to be named the Columbian’s new Outdoors Reporter.

I feel especially honored to follow in the footsteps of someone like Al Thomas. He left me with some big shoes to fill, for Al had developed a loyal following through his straight-forward reporting of all things outdoors in Vancouver and southwest Washington over the last 37…

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