Bobber hunting takes over Chilton County

Published 11:33 am Wednesday, August 30, 2023

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By Carey Reeder | Managing Editor

Zachary Gage McDaniel has recently found his niche in the life of content creation, and he is now spreading ideas into the Chilton County community to get people involved outdoors.

McDaniel has always been interested in content creation, but he never established his niche or a specific topic he wanted to create content for. Growing up in Chilton County, McDaniel did fish for catfish and about six months ago he took up bass fishing. It was then he found his niche.

“I knew I loved to create content, but I did not know what type of content I wanted to make,” McDaniel said. “I started bass fishing and I was like ‘This is it.’ It just took over my life.”

McDaniel created the Fishing With Go Ham YouTube channel and had an established TikTok account that he shaped into the fishing content. They garnered thousands of views as he began putting out fishing content and they gained steam quickly even having sponsors for videos reach out to McDaniel.

“Most people do not see success that quick, and it kind of blindsided me trying to figure that out because I was not ready for it,” McDaniel said. “Not only can anyone start creating content, but I honestly have no idea what I am doing when it comes to fishing. I have only been fishing for six months … I hope people can look at that (and be inspired).”

Growing up locally, McDaniel battled with anxiety and depression and dropped out of school in the eighth grade. He did get his GED and began working right away, but he struggled to find traction in life.

“I could not find my footing in life,” McDaniel said.

However, he said once he got outside fishing he felt like he could get away from those problems and they did not control his life anymore. The biggest goal of his channel, account and content he creates is to promote kids to want to go outside, and having content creators like himself will have a good influence on getting kids to do that.

McDaniel believes the perspectives people had about him in his younger years have drastically changed in more recent years, and he has “turned his life around.”

As the content continued to grow, McDaniel wanted to do something hands-on with the Chilton County community, and the GoHam Bobber Hunt was born.

McDaniel wanted to hide something in various places across the county and promote where they were hidden in videos with clues and hints. Those who find the bobbers can bring them back to him for a prize. The bobbers, to him, seemed like a nice touch to go with his fishing content.

“The bobbers were not the first thought, it was just to let me hide something and have these people get outside to look for them,” McDaniel said. “I was walking through Walmart and saw the bobbers and knew that was the thing (to hide).”

The first few times McDaniel hid the bobbers the prizes were just cash and t-shirts, but recently sponsors and companies have reached out to him about getting involved such as donating some prizes to be handed out.

“To me, community is everything,” McDaniel said. “There is so much tearing communities apart nowadays, and I feel like there needs to be some kind of positive force trying to bring the community together while also getting them outdoors. Who knows where this will take us.”

McDaniel is planning to do the bobber hunt once per month in Chilton County and has recently hid bobbers at Higgins Ferry for viewers to hunt for. He also wants to expand to other nearby counties in central Alabama.

For more information about McDaniel and the bobber hunt visit the Fishing With Go Ham YouTube channel or TikTok account.