How much technology is enough? Is it really an absolute necessity that we purchase the newest edition of whatever we purchased just a year ago?
Is bigger really better, faster really needed, color better than black and white?
The answer to all those questions, in my opinion, is yes, no, maybe and how much do you want to spend.
Let’s talk depth finders for starters. After all, what fisherman doesn’t rely on a depth finder?
In the old days, as in 25 or 30 years ago, we were all drooling over the latest in depth finders, black and white screens that marked a fist-size screen with anything the sonar bounced of off.
Basically, that was the bottom and sometimes fish. Then, in steps as short as a few months to a year, improvements were made, features added and we all lusted after them.
Now fast forward to today.
It’s not unusual to see every weekend angler’s boat equipped with not one, but two or more depth finders with larger screens, more detailed graphics, unlimited features and enough brain power to control a moon shot.
Ask the owner some questions and you’ll likely be in for a challenging trip through a jargon jungle.
Words like auto chart, chirp, imaging, mapping, hook, remote steer, gen 3 or gen 4, read outs, pixels, interface and about a dozen more, maybe two dozen, all indication of the latest and best.
The latest in depth finders, if compatible with the rest of the equipment, can do everything but run the boat.
Oh wait, yes they can. It’s all mind-boggling but cool. If it comes down to the really need or just want argument, the trump card is want.
Other newer tech gizmos available are every bit as appetizing to fishermen, boaters, hunters and hikers as fancy depth finders are to fishers who boat.
Remotes and cell phone apps that provide boat motor data such as hours running, internal temperature, fuel burn, etc.
How about trolling motor routes, speed and, get this, the ability to deploy, turn on and direct the craft to a dock or stay put in one spot regardless of wind, waves and current.
Tech in hunting
Hunters are also underwhelmed with standard trail cameras, which have been available for years. Yes, they still work just as they always have, but newer ones do more.
They take clearer pictures, at greater distances, in lower light, and one can see the pictures from the comfort of a recliner on a phone app or computer.
Speaking of hunters, how about that smell? Odor hiding sprays, body washes, cover scents and the smarts to set up downwind have worked well for archers especially.
But wait, there’s more. Give credit to technology and those who understand how to use it for ozone and molecular juggling gear that, according to marketing claims, actually eliminates human odor.
Cell phone apps and online navigation sites are doing away with the need to use landmarks, familiarization skills, compass awareness, boots on the ground and off-season scouting and so much more.
It’s all so amazing, inviting and pricey. It’s the present, the future, and it isn’t over.
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