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Boat Fishing For Beginners, Freshwater And Saltwater Boat Fishing

Information For The Fishing Beginner Or Amatuer Angler

Boat fishing is a great way to reach fish that aren't near the shore or bank. It also allows the angler to cover a lot more water, which will hopefully mean access to a lot more fish. Boat fishing can be done in any type of water, but you'll need a vessel that matches the water.

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Types Of Fishing Boats

Boat Fishing In Saltwater

For calm, relatively shallow water, you'll need a boat that doesn't draw much water. That means the bottom of the vessel, the hull, doesn't extend very far beneath the water line. A boat with a shallow draft can reach shallow water without running aground. Boats with flat bottoms are a must for fishing "skinny" water, but they're best at low speeds. At higher speeds, the ride will be rough and unstable.

Boats with V hulls are probably the most popular. With this type of boat, the bottom can come to a sharp or rounded V shape. These boats draw more water, so they can't be used in the shallows. They do, however, provide stability at high speeds and in rough water.

Another type of hull is the tri-hull. The bottom of theses boats have one deep V, along with two smaller hulls - one on each side of the V. The ride in a tri-hull boat will be choppier than in a V-hull boat at high speeds, but the tri-hull will provide more stability when the boat isn't moving.



Methods Of Boat Fishing - Trolling For Fish

One of the best angling methods for boat fishing is trolling. To troll, you'll need a boat with a motor. Unless you're fishing for fast pelagic fish species, you'll need a motor that will run slow, like a trolling motor. To troll, you cast your bait a good distance from the boat and run over or near spots that likely hold fish.

Trolling can be done at different depths, depending on how much weight you have on the end of your line. For baits, many fishermen prefer artificials for trolling, but live bait works well, also.

Trolling is a great way to cover a lot of water fairly quickly. The disadvantage is that you might have a lot of line tangles if you're fishing in water with submerged brush or other underwater structures.

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Methods Of Boat Fishing- Bottom Fishing

Fishing from a boat can allow you to fish deep holes or underwater structures that you wouldn't be able to access otherwise. For bottom fishing, you'll drop your line all the way to the bottom surface, using weights. This type of fishing is effective for species that feed mainly on the bottom, including catfish, sharks, snapper, and grouper.

For bottom fishing, you'll need natural baits. If you're fishing in fresh water, these include worms, minnows, cut bait, chicken livers or gizzards, and "stink baits."

Methods Of Boat Fishing - Casting From The Boat For Fish

Boat Fishing In Saltwater

For casting from a boat, the boat might be anchored or drifting slowly. Once you locate a likely spot, cast over and around it and retrieve your baits. By retrieving at different speeds and at different depths, you'll be able to discover where the fish are holding. If you don't get any strikes while fishing near the surface, use deeper casts.

If you locate a school of fish, never cast directly into it - the fish will get spooked. Instead, cast beyond and around the school.

Casting can be done with natural baits like minnows when boat fishing, but it's usually done with artificials like spoons, plastic worms, jigs, top-water plugs, diving plugs, and spinner baits. The method of retrieval depends on the type of bait you're using.

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