Don’t be outsmarted by a fish

Hook 1

Are you getting bites but not catching fish?

Or the fish you do catch are all small throw backs?

Most anglers using bait cast their line out, put the rod in a rod holder, and tighten the line so they can watch the tip of the rod move when they get a bite.

The problem with this technique is that when a fish picks up the bait, the first thing they feel is the tension of a tight line and bending rod tip.

I believe it is one of the main reasons for bites, but no hookups, especially from larger more caution fish.

The way to catch more and bigger fish is to present a bait looking as natural as possible and when picked up by the fish there is no hint of it being attached to a line.

The way to do this is firstly, use fine diameter line or even better, use fine diameter fluorocarbon leader which is harder to see in water.

The second most important thing to do is to fish with loose line.

Hook 2

The only part of the line the angler can see is from the rod tip until it disappears into the surface of the water.

This line should not be tight telegraphing the bite to the rod tips, it should be loose, dropping in a curve so it almost touches the water.

Rather than watching the rod tip, the angler should be watching the loose line.

When a fish bites the bait, the line will tighten, you will see the line between the rod tip and the water bounce up and down.

Without tension on the line, the fish is less likely to know the rod is attached to their next meal.

Loose line fishing in still water conditions will produce more bites and better quality fish than a tight line to the rod tip.

The same rule applies whether you’re fishing from a boat or land based, watch the line not the rod tip.


About Dave "Nugget" Downie

Dave ‘Nugget’ Downie was raised in the Snowy Mountains in southern New South Wales and grew up fishing for everything from local trout on fly in the Snowy lakes through to land based game on the south coast.

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