A new resource for local fishing spots

A new resource for local fishing spots

Addie Muntean fishes locally with her family.


Businesses matching consumers to a specific service have done well in recent years. Airbnb rents unused space to travelers. Uber provides quick transportation using another person’s downtime. Doordash brings delivery from places where delivery isn’t normally available.

Two years ago a new service called FishMySpot began matching anglers with the owners of private ponds. The service, available at www.fishmyspot.com, seeks to “build a fishing community,” said Mike Miller, who has been helping to build the business locally.

“It started with three buddies,” Miller said. “They liked to fish and knew of many places they’d like to try their luck, but getting permission was kind of a hassle.”

The men — Eric Metcalf, Joe Nadzam and Mike Smith — struck on the idea for FishMySpot and started building a website. Smith’s wife, Larissa, a former school principal, came onboard as CEO.

On the consumer side, anglers can search the site for ponds within the Northeast Ohio area. A fee, ranging from $35-$55, allows fishing at the chosen pond for four people for several hours or a full day.

“They don’t have to try and go onto the property and knock to ask permission,” Miller said. “The site handles all that.”

The fee is largely determined by the size of the pond. “Some are an acre or so; some cover several acres,” Miller said. “And private ponds tend to be well stocked with fish. Since they’re privately owned, no fishing license is necessary.”

“The pond owner maintains control of their land and the process,” Larissa Smith said. “And there are many incentives for them to list their pond.”

Owners decide whether to allow fishermen to catch and keep any fish they’re able to land or if they must be released.

“They choose when the pond is available, and they can add extra services to earn more money,” Smith said. “Some provide a shelter or grill or a boat rental. Some are attached to a bed and breakfast. The land owner dictates the terms, and they’re able to earn extra income from an asset they own, so there are also tax incentives from turning their land into an income producing asset.”

Smith said there is no cost for a land owner to list their pond.

So far 18 ponds have been listed with 17 in Northeast Ohio and one in New York. Smith said pond owners have been pleased with the service so far.

“One of the owners of a listed pond shared her experience of watching from her window as a family with children had a great time catching fish,” Smith said. “That’s what we want to create with the service. Our mission is to provide opportunities for parents, grandparents and kids to get away from their tech gadgets and get outside and have fun together. We want to make that process as simple as possible for all concerned.”

Ponds are listed in Dover, Navarre, Dundee, Canton and Sugarcreek.

The number of people fishing has been declining year to year. “Young people aren’t being exposed to fishing as they once were, and we know that teaching them to fish early often creates a lifelong interest,” Smith said.

Lower participation in the sport also is related to being unable to locate good places to fish. “Anglers drive by ponds they think would be a good place to fish but don’t know how to go about getting permission,” Smith said. “FishMySpot brings people together for everyone’s benefit.”

The company goal is to grow the service throughout Ohio and then expand into neighboring states. “There are an awful lot of great ponds in Pennsylvania and West Virginia,” Smith said. “Eventually we would like to offer what we do nationally.”

As some form of social distancing looks like it will be a part of life for the next several months to lessen the spread of the coronavirus, Smith said fishing is an activity specifically listed as allowed. “You can go right on fishing while we keep our safe distance from one another,” she said. “Getting outside to fish is the perfect break from being cooped up at home. Not everyone in the party has to fish. You can also come along to watch and get some fresh air.”

Find information, available ponds and booking rates at the website.

Loading next article...

End of content

No more pages to load