Seymour Eslofsky

I got hooked on fishing early

One of my father’s favorite fishing destinations within easy driving distance of Queens, NY was Harriman State Park in Ramapo, New York. Dad would pile the family into our Chevy station wagon and travel about an 1-1/2 hours to get there. The scenery along the Palisades Parkway was beautiful and we were always excited to go “fishing in the country.” We knew we were closing in on the fishing holes when we drove around the traffic circle near Bear Mountain and turned onto Seven Lakes Drive. When I was around twelve years old, Dad decided to take the family there on July 4th. The park was packed with picnickers and people at the lake beaches, all waiting for the July4th fireworks. We were fishing Lake Tiorati and stayed past dark. It was so beautiful see the fireworks and their reflections on the lake. My father told me not to expect to catch much, since the noise would probably scare off the fish. Nobody nearby was catching anything either. The next thing I knew, I felt a strike and reeled in a largemouth bass! I remember how proud Dad was that his daughter caught a keeper during the fireworks, especially when nobody else was catching anything. I think of catching that fish every July 4th. I will always treasure that memory. Dad has passed away, but I always say a little thank you to him every time I’m out in nature with a rod and reel.