A Sure Way to Improve Your Fishing Skills? Go Fishing at Night.

Jul 11, 2014

Credit Alistair Nicol / flickr

There are plenty of reasons to fish at night. Yes, you're more likely to land bigger bass after dark. But it's also a great way to sharpen all your fishing senses.

Through the summer's warmest months, striped bass feed more and feed closer to shore at night. They also tend to be less "spooky" - meaning they're more likely to strike your lure.  

If you're intimidated by the idea of fishing at night - can't see where you're casting, can't see what's on the other end of your line - then Kevin Blinkoff, editor of On The Water Magazine, has these tips for getting started:

Begin in well-lit areas. Streetlights and building lights, even at a distance, help you keep your bearings. Or begin at sunset and fish into the dark, letting your senses slowly adjust to the dwindling light. Or try fishing the full moon - it is amazing just how much illumination the full moon does cast.   

Plan ahead for special contingencies. You'll want a headlamp that has a "red-light" setting to preserve your night vision. And make sure that your gear is in good shape and well organized - you'll be grateful not to have to grope for tackle and tie knots in the dark.

And there are a couple safety considerations to keep in mind.  Whether fishing from a boat or the shore, be sure you know the area well; it's good practice to fish an are in daylight before fishing it at night. Also, be sure you let somebody know where you're headed, and what time you're expecting to return. And bring a back-up light, in case your primary headlamp dies or falls in the water.

Simply be having your vision limited by darkness, you'll find your other senses compensating. Your hearing may seem sharper, and that lure on the end of your line communicates its action on retrieve with seemingly greater sensitivity. And the next time you set out to fish in daylight, you will be that much more "in tune" with your surrounding and your gear.

This week's fishing roundup from On The Water:

It was a challenging week. Hurricane Arthur passed by over 4th of July weekend, and followed with days of strong southwest winds. Before storm, some excellent fishing was reported in the Cape Cod Canal at the East End. Otherwise, we can expect shift into summertime patterns - sea bass and scup moving deeper, stripers moving to deeper water and areas like the Monomoy rips and the current rips off Chatham.