The Joy of Fly Fishing in New Brunswick

The Joy of Fly Fishing in New Brunswick

Sight Fishing: Being Able To Spot Fish In The Water

Posted: 04 Jan 2012 08:01 AM PST

I have a fishing buddy I like to refer to as Eagle Eye Paul. He could see things from such a distance away that at first we didn't believe the things he said he saw, that we of course couldn't see.

It didn't take long before he had proved this over and over. He could even see fish in the water in place I couldn't and I can usually spot fish. I wonder how many I have missed over the years.

Well for those of us who don't have Paul's eagle eye vision, like myself, other skills are required or perhaps skill along with technology.

There are a lot of clues in and around the water's edge a fisher can use to determine how they will fish this particular spot. I have been fishing for 50 years and for many of those years it was pretty simple fishing gear so I had to use skill to do well.

When I am in water that is deeper than I can see or if I have Eagle Eye with me, I usually rely on a fish finder. It's so much better than sticking your head in the water to see what's down there. Casey has two Humminbird Fishfinder in his boat which is great because I get to see the structure as well even though we are on opposite ends of his boat.

The fact we don't see any fish on the fish finder doesn't mean they aren't there. It usually means they just aren't right there under the same path the boat is taking. That's why I like to look for structure and fish the structure.

If the fishing is good and the fish finder doesn't have a way to mark your spot then I like to line three spots on the shore so I can find my way back. I spent a lot of time on lakes with my canoe and portable Humminbird Fish Finder and loved locating new structure.

I've even looked at smaller fish finders for my float tube but I don't go far from shore in the tube so I can't really justify getting one. When the wind picks up I like being close to shore when float tubing.

But back to spotting fish in the water. Even though I can't see into the water I can see what's happening at the surface so I look for any activity that would indicate possible fish.

  1. Jumping fish, hey that's a great indicator, although when Atlantic salmon fishing it doesn't mean they are going to take anything you throw at them. I love chasing jumping fish.
  2. Jumping baitfish, are usually trying to escape being dinner. Give them something other than that bait fish to look at.
  3. Birds that eat fish are worth watching and not just because they are awesome to watch. They can lead you directly to a great day of fishing.
  4. Shoreline structure that extends into the water such as trees and points.
  5. Shorelines can indicate sudden drop-offs or points that extend into deeper water.

There are plenty of indicators that will help you find fish whether you're fishing shorelines or off-shore. It just takes observing your surroundings but I have to admit I would rather take pictures of the scenery and use a Humminbird Fishfinder to locate the fish.

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