Fishing is a great way to introduce kids into the great outdoors and teach them the value of nature and wildlife. While most youngsters first learn to fish for bluegill, smallmouth bass are probably the most action-packed species in North America and can be the perfect target for parents and adults looking to properly introduce kids to the wild. Smallmouth bass are not quite as big as their largemouth cousins, but what they lack in size, they make up for in strength. Smallmouth can be described as more stocky than largemouth and are well-known for their ferocious strength and tenacity. Generally found in the upper southeastern United States and across the Midwest, smallmouth prefer cool, clear water such as streams or rocky portions of lakes and reservoirs. Known as the “pound-for-pound hardest-fighting freshwater fish,” smallmouth bass are a whole new adventure on the water and smallmouth bass fishing with kids is a great way to introduce youngsters into the outdoors. We caught up with some of the best smallmouth fishing outfits in the country to find out all the positives of smallmouth bass fishing with kids. A Great Head Start Smallmouth bass fishing with kids is not only a great way to have fun on the water, it can be a way for young anglers to make their way through high school and college and on to a successful professional career. Marcel Veenstra, owner of Marcel’s Guide Service, focuses specifically on smallmouth bass fishing in Michigan, which is teeming with smallmouth bass. He says that smallmouth bass fishing with kids is a great way for kids who love the outdoors to stay in school. “Schools nowadays have bass fishing teams in high school and on into college,” says Marcel. “Kids can get their feet wet in fishing and really use it to propel them into the next step in life. For some kids, it’s a way to keep them in school and encourage them to stay focused on their grades so they can continue fishing in tournaments.” Marcel says he has noticed that some kids have an aptitude to learn and utilize electronic technology in way that helps them catch more fish and be more successful on the water. “Some of these kids I’ve fished with and helped are simply amazing when it comes to learning the technological capabilities of electronics and finding out ways to use them to win tournaments,” says Marcel. “It gives them an avenue to stay outside and I think that’s crucial to their development. Smallmouth bass fishing with kids pays off in more ways than one.” Mix Things Up With a Float Trip Smallmouth bass fishing with kids is often best done from a canoe on the gentle, rolling streams throughout much of America. For Chris Frenzen, a guide at Headwater Outfitters, nothing beats smallmouth bass fishing with kids on a float trip. “A float trip is really perfect for getting kids into fishing because it’s really a great way to connect with nature and it’s also a blast when the bite is good,” says Chris. “We see all kinds of wildlife and getting to catch some fish on top of all that makes float trips really awesome.” If you’re looking to plan smallmouth bass fishing trips with kids anytime soon, keep in mind that the best fishing isn’t always done from the deck of a bass boat. Nothing Fights Harder Than a Smallmouth One of the main reasons why smallmouth bass fishing with kids is a great idea is the same reason why the species are sought after by rookies and seasoned veteran anglers alike: the fight. “Smallmouth bass fight harder than just about any other freshwater fish around North America,” says David Rose, owner of Wildfishing Guide Service. “There’s really nothing like catching a nice smallmouth bass and it’s perfect for really introducing kids to the outdoors and fishing in general.” Smallmouth bass fishing with kids is practically a guaranteed way to get youngsters hooked on the sport of fishing as few freshwater fish can make a drag scream quite like smallies. David is well-acquainted with smallmouth bass and also writes articles on his smallmouth fishing adventures for magazines like Field & Stream and In-Fisherman. “If you want to get kids into fishing, just let them get out there and hook a smallmouth,” says Dave. “Once they get to fight one, they’ll be eager for more action. Smallmouth bass fishing with kids is a great way to spend time with your kids. The only downside is that they might be ruined on fishing for any other kind of freshwater species.” Start Out With a Guide While smallmouth bass can be found in countless bodies of water throughout the United States, it isn’t always easy to catch them. For those who are serious about going smallmouth bass fishing with kids and making it a success that leads to more interest from young anglers, hiring a guide is an essential first step. Smallmouth bass fishing guides are a wealth of knowledge when it comes to fishing and one can learn a great deal from a single trip with the right guide. Don’t try to skimp on cost and go for a do-it-yourself approach as it could lead to getting skunked and a loss of interest from any kids who tag along. Hire a guide when you plan to go smallmouth bass fishing with kids and you’ll have a much better chance of a great experience on the water going after one of the hardest fighting fish around.