Inshore saltwater fishing trips are a fun and educational way for all family members to spend time together outdoors. Sheltered bays and estuaries generally offer calmer waters with plenty of opportunities to catch a variety of saltwater species such as spotted sea trout, crevasses, flounder, redfish, sheep’s head, and Spanish mackerel. It can be such an exciting experience because you never know what might be pulling the end of your line when you are fishing in just a few meters of water!
If you’re new to saltwater fishing, these ten beginner tips can get you started.
- Make sure you have a valid saltwater fishing license for your state. You can purchase or renew your saltwater fishing license either online or by phone, which makes the process very easy and convenient.
- Check a local tide map when planning your land saltwater fishing trip. One of the most important tips for fishing on land is planning your trips based on the movement of the tide. Mangroves and oyster bars can be good places to fish at high tide, while channels and passes can be productive spots at low tide. For the sake of simplicity, remember that the baitfish generally follows the tide and the wild fish follows the baitfish.
- Start with a 7 foot combo of a medium weight spinning rod and reel designed to hold a test line of 10 to 20 pounds. This facility has you covered in a range of shore situations, from inshore or pier fishing to fishing in bays or estuaries.
- Bring your polarized sunglasses. Polarized sunglasses not only protect your eyes from the sun, they also help you spot fish below the surface. These types of sunglasses are made with a special lens technology that cuts through the glare on the surface of the water.
- Try to fish early or late, especially if you fish in warm climates or in the summer months. If you want to fish from a pier or the shore you will usually find a better spot and have a more comfortable fishing experience in the cooler hours of the day.
- Use live or natural bait. Natural baits like shrimp or bait fish offer you the best opportunity for consistent action. Natural baits can easily be attached to a circular hook under a popping cork. As a general guideline, you should adjust your hook size to the size of the bait you plan to use.
- Treat your live bait properly. Make sure to keep your live bait out of direct sunlight in a covered bait bucket or in a habitat. If you don’t have a life with an aerator pump, invest in a bait bucket aerator that will maintain adequate oxygen levels and keep your bait alive.
- Consider fishing from a public pier to begin. Public docks are great places to get some experience of land saltwater fishing, rigging bait, and landing fishing. This is especially the case on family fishing trips as children can easily take breaks if necessary.
- Keep an eye on the water. Look for bait fish jumping to the surface or changes in water color that may indicate a change in depth or drop. These are two signs that wild fish are likely around. Once you have the kids with you, ask them to help you find any signs of bait fish or fish habitats – this is a great way to keep kids busy between bites.
- When catching and releasing, keep the catch out of the water only as long as you can hold your breath. The best way to take a picture is to use a rubberized net or fish claw to hold the catch in the water until the camera, photographer, and angler are ready.
If you want to find some good fishing spots for saltwater families, just take advantage of the boating and fishing spots. You already have a list of coastal fishing tips that can add to your success!