Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Effects of Wind on Fishing Conditions

Wind is one of several factors that can be good or bad for the fisherman. Too much wind can ruin the fishing because you won't be able to keep your bait where you want it. Strong winds will also churn up the surf making it harder for fish to find your bait. However , some fish do prefer a little bit rougher water. While I'm not an expert , I'll try to explain why you should take wind speed and direction into consideration when planning a fishing trip.

Wind is nearly constant in most coastal areas. It can be light and variable on some days or from the same direction with great force on others. Over thousands of years the wind and waves from powerful storms have sculpted our coastlines and continue to do so today. This is how new " holes " are made at the beach that attract both fish and anglers.

Of course , you probably won't be fishing during a powerful storm. There are other things that can directly be attributed to the wind. With a strong westerly wind , temperatures in the surf here on the East Coast will drop. Warmer water is pushed offshore and the species that prefer warm water go with it. Grass and other debris will be pushed out of inlets and bays into the surf. Fishing conditions suffer under a stiff westerly wind. Sea grass gets tangled in your lines and warm water species aren't present. It's still possible to catch fish , but not as many.

When the wind is blowing from the east , warm water is pushed onshore and this sometimes leads to excellent fishing. As long as the wind speed stays below 15 mph the surf will clear up and schools of fish will start to come in. Some of my best days of fishing were when the wind was coming out of the east. Easterly winds can work against you though. At wind speeds over 15 mph , the surf will get rough and it becomes increasingly more difficult to cast , especially with smaller artificial lures.

Perfect weather conditions for me would be an overcast day with steady winds out of the Northeast at 5-10 mph. If I waited for perfect conditions I wouldn't fish very often.

Have a great day!

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