Winter fishing can be rewarding for different reasons. Winter is the time of the year when different freshwater fish species group up. This means that there are more fish for the col-weather anglers. In order to make your fishing trips more memorable during winter, you need to do a proper research and prepare properly.
The following are the best winter fishing tips you should know.
1. Pick the Perfect Spot
Pick the perfect spot if you want to make your fishing trip successful. Know where you want to go. The internet can guide you to fishing meccas. Spend your time searching for the right spot. You won’t enjoy your fishing trip if you pick a wrong spot. Use the internet to learn more about local lakes, the types of fish you want to catch and know the creel limits.
Different websites can provide you with lake levels and the current flow predictions. These conditions can affect your safety and success. The lakes that are very high and the ones experiencing overflow conditions can limit your fishing chances, especially during winter. Do not fish in a river or a lake that has predictions for high current or has high current.
Fishing will be difficult in these lakes and rivers and it is also dangerous to fish in these areas. Pick a lake or a river that is in normal winter conditions and has stable or natural current. Use the internet to pick the right spot.
2. Find the Right Time to Go
So many people want to go fishing around work schedule, but the weather should be considered. Check the weather forecast to know the days that will be productive. Know that the best fishing conditions are not comfortable for fishers, but these conditions help to improve catching odds. Fish are active prior a weather front and they are less active after the weather front.
However, most people are limited to fishing on weekends, even if the weather conditions are not perfect for fishing. If you are among this group of people, know that the best time to catch fish in winter is between 10 am and 4 pm. Use this opportunity to enjoy a comfortable fishing experience.
3. Gather Your Equipment
Fishing in winter usually put an extra strain on fishing equipment. After knowing where you want to go fishing, make sure that the fishing equipment can handle this task. Check the reels and make sure they are in good working order. The reel bearing that was stiff and noisy during warm conditions will fail in cold conditions. Clean and lubricate your reels to avoid frustrations. This way, when a perfect fish is hooked, you will be able to land the fish comfortably.
It is difficult to manage fluorocarbon and monofilament lines during cold winter conditions. Use a line conditioner to keep your line supple and to prevent it from twisting. This helps to reduce tangles and backlashes. Use the conditioner on your rod guide to prevent water from freezing in the rod guide.
4. Choose the Best Bait
It is very difficult to choose the best bait for fishing during winter. There are a few basics that can help you pick the right bait. The best choice is live bait, because this bait reacts to water naturally. Angers usually work artificial baits too quickly for winter. Predators and forage are cold-blooded and the cold water during winter slows their metabolism, so they move slowly. Bait that moves quickly will turn the fish away.
Artificial baits that you might want to use are those with feathers and/or hair. They provide more action during winter and they are better than soft plastic baits that get stiff and lose their built-in action when temperature of water dips below 50 degrees. Feathers and hair do not respond like this to the changes in temperature; this bait maintains an excellent action and has little movement. Feathers and hair move with water currents, so the bait will move naturally.
If you want to catch fish on lures, use the lures that can catch multiple species. The primary winter forage for freshwater species is yearling sunfish/perch, herring or shad. Match the forage species with lures.
Reduce the lure size during this time, because the cold temperatures reduce the metabolism of the fish, so the fish do not feed as often. The fish finds it easy to catch small prey during winter. So, you need to present something small and slow, because it mimics the natural feeding habits of the fish at this time of the year.
5. Stay Safe
It is important to be safe when you are fishing during winter. You should be mindful of the weather conditions and respect these conditions. Have a good game plan, dress in layers and tell someone your timing. You will need help as soon as possible if you run into trouble. That is why it important to tell one of your friend or your family member your location, the expected travel route and the expected return time. This will speed up the search process if something happens while you are fishing.
If you plan properly and be mindful of the weather conditions, you will have a successful fishing adventure. So, start by researching your waterway, choose the right fishing equipment and make sure that the equipment are in good working order and choose live or multi-species lures.