Let’s face it, social media has made the fishing world a smaller place. Locations and techniques that were once guarded by a secret handshake and a personal voucher are now available to all anglers like samples at a Costco. It’s all part of living in the information age. Anglers alike scour media outlets seeking a mountain of information in hopes of their next trip being that much more successful. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on how you look at, trophy speckled trout, like they often do, always seem to be one step ahead. Their evasiveness of anglers across all estuaries seems to adapt to our thirst for knowledge, leaving us sometimes scratching our heads. Thus inspiring me to write about one key component that is often overlooked by inshore anglers across all estuaries – intuition.
MAKING ADJUSTMENTS TO CATCH MORE FISH
Like you, I continue to educate myself on the latest equipment and techniques through the myriad of resources available online. I immerse myself in conversation of what I think is working in an area and where I should focus my efforts, and like many anglers this doesn’t always lead me to success. What I’ve found to be most successful during many of my trips is my ability to make adjustments. For example, if you’re fishing an area that has been producing fish on topwaters and suspend baits and the bite has seemingly shut down, you need to peel back the onion of why it’s not producing and consider adjusting your technique. Maybe it’s because there has been an environmental shift in conditions? Maybe the bait that was present is staged differently on the flat? It could be a host of things, but figuring out and adjusting your technique could be the difference in your angling success. As a result, a simple switch to a soft plastic with a varied retrieve will produce a bite, and when it does, strive for consistency. Another example may involve the fish moving all together, but having that intuition and confidence to make adjustments and find high potential water comes with experience only achieved on the water.
FISHING INTUITION vs. ANGLING INFORMATION
If you take one thing from this article, it’s knowing that you should always trust your fishing intuition. I grew up under the fishing instruction of my dad, who would always tell me, “Son, don’t read about the news, get out there and make the news.” For years I heard that coined phrase and as I continued to grow as an angler the more it made sense. In short, what he was saying is don’t fish an area just because you’ve heard it has fish, instead fish the conditions and find the fish. To many times, I’ve watched him stop the boat and fish a spot we’ve never fished before and be successful. I’ve also been back to those spots on occasion and have had limited success simply because the “conditions just weren’t right.” Angling information on the other hand is what we find online. This could be tutorials on how to use your electronics to better storing your soft plastics. It can also contain spot information from local forums about where fish are being caught, but it won’t necessarily put fish over the gunnels – your fishing intuition will.
I’ll leave you with this. My dad and I on our first trip down to South Texas fished with now good friend and mentor Capt Mike McBride. As you would expect, my dad and Mike got to talking about the centuries worth of trout fishing knowledge they both possess. As a fly on the wall, on a flat in the lower Laguna Madre, I heard my dad utter his coined phrase to Mike. Mike perpetuating his agreement decided to move the boat one more time to adjust to a water color change driven by the strong S. Texas wind. Immediately, Mike and I went back-to-back on big trout, and without hesitation he looks at my dad and says, “PeePaw, don’t read about the news, read the water, then make the news!”
I can’t encourage you enough to store what you’ve read online in your memory bank. Draw from that knowledge when required but never second guess your intuition, this and only this will make you consistently successful. If you enjoyed this article, take a look at my last article highlighting some tips and tricks for fishing with suspend baits!
Until next month…Tight lines and God Bless!
The Speckled Truth
CHOOSE YOUR NEW FAVORITE FISHING SHIRT!