Active Angler Trip Planner
Our Trip Planner has been provided to put everything that you'll need to prepare for your trip in one place.
Planning for a fishing trip can almost be as much fun as the trip itself. A little planning beforehand can really improve your odds for catching a lot of fish. How? By doing a little research into the lake or reservoir that you plan on fishing, you can create a game plan for catching fish. After all, finding the fish is probably one of the hardest parts of fishing so why waste your time once youve gotten there?
By obtaining a good topographic map, you can identify all of the prime spots where the fish are likely to be located. Look for depth of water contour readings that run around lake's shoreline like a reverse topo, starting with a line that represents 2' - 5' deep adjacent to the shore. Locate the deep channels, the points, drop-offs, and humps. Find the shallow flats, and the deep holes. Any old asphalt road beds, with bridges crossing the inlet also offer fish attractive structure. So too with submerged buildings, etc. Underwater springs that offer cool spots in the middle of the summer, also should be noted. Obviously, there are tons of things that can be discovered by reading a topo map. You can practically scout out your trip before you even leave. This saves a lot of time when you get there. That way you can concentrate on catching the fish, not finding them.
There are some other helpful items that cant be found on a topo map. As soon as you arrive, ask local bait shop owners, and local fishermen, a few other things. Ask about the water clarity. Are parts of the lake muddier than others? Where are the grass beds? Where is the bottom sandy? Rocky? These are great questions that need to be answered in order to complete your survey of the lake.
Next, study the local weather patterns so that you can be prepared for how the fish will behave. Understanding bass and their seasonal patterns can greatly affect your success as an angler. It can show you where to find the fish and how they are likely to behave.
Research the current water conditions. Become familiar with the water flow out of the dam. Check it several days in a row before you leave. This can give you a good indication of the water levels in the reservoir. Is the water low? Is it rising or falling? This will affect where the fish are moving to. If the water is rising, the fish can be found close to the shore and in coves. If it is falling, look for them to move into the deeper waters. What is the water temperature? Also check out fishing reports published by local fishermen. They are invaluable tools to let you know about water conditions as well as what the fish are biting, and what they are not.
Check out local bait shops. Many of them can now be found online. See what items they sell a lot of. Ask them what works well, as far as patterns, colors, and types of rigs.
If you remember to follow this outline and do a little research
before you leave, you'll definitely thank yourself once you get to your
destination. You find that you catch more fish and waste less time searching
for the fish. Good luck, and tight lines.