Have you tried surf fishing at night? If so, then you know it’s an exhilarating experience as the surf provides a better opportunity for catching fish as the sun sets. Areas that have little to no activity during the day are teeming with fish from dusk to dawn.
If you’re interested in learning the secrets, you’re in the right place as we’ll dive into all the tips and tricks of experts to reap the benefits of surf fishing at night on outer banks.
Tips from Seasoned Anglers on Surf Fishing at Night
There are a couple of things you need to do. The most important ones given by our resident seasoned anglers are discussed thoroughly below.
Plan the Trip Accordingly
Surf fishing requires planning and preparation not only for your safety but also for your loved ones’ peace of mind as you venture into the night.
Regardless of how comfortable and confident you are with your abilities, there’s no telling what exactly can happen while you’re out at night surf fishing.
So, before heading out onto the water, come up with an extensive plan and leave copies with all those you trust. Extensive planning includes contact details, check-in periods, details on both your arrival and departure, medical condition information, and other relevant details.
You also have to make sure you can be contacted. This means your mobile phone should be protected from moisture. You wouldn’t want to trigger false alarms just by having a damaged phone.
This means you need to secure the right surf fishing gear beforehand. From surf fishing rods and surf fishing reels to fish finder rigs, make sure you have the necessary equipment. If you’re not sure if you already have the essentials, make a complete list of the items you need.
If there’s surf fishing equipment you still need to rent or purchase, don’t leave until you have them. You wouldn’t want to realize you haven’t packed a crucial item when you’re already on the beach.
Get Familiar with the Location
It’s not a good idea to be in an unfamiliar area at night and on a surf fishing expedition. During the day, scout the shoreline and familiarize yourself with the terrain where you want to be your spot for surf fishing.
Don’t forget to jot down notes regarding the directions to reach the ideal spot and find obvious marks which can guide you back.
Having a map will also help. Take advantage of the low tide and look for areas that have dips, sandbanks, hollows, and other structures that fish can use for hanging out and feeding while there’s a high tide.
It also pays to check out during a low tide the safety and access of your position, the casting distances to nearby rocks, and the location of the sandbanks.
Talk to the Locals
It’s likely that there’s already a thriving community close to the spot where you would like to surf fish.
Go into the local tackle shop that sells fishing gear as the people there are likely to be ready and willing to give you critical information on the perfect spot for surf fishing. We suggest you talk to the other customers and, of course, the employees of the local shop.
They will tell you where exactly you can find rips in the shoals, as well as other little details which can already make a difference to your fishing success and experience.
Pay Close Attention to the Tide
As an angler that goes surf fishing at night, there’s a need for you to understand the tides of a water body and how they can affect surf fishing.
It’s best to secure a tide chart for a particular area and coincide the excursion with high tides. When the tide is high, bigger fish get drawn towards the shoreline. Avoid slack tides because that will be when fish are less likely to feed and be near the shore.
To get the best results, arrive at the designated fishing spot of your choosing a few hours before the high tide. Then, continue fishing for the next four hours. After six hours, you’ll have all the fish that you can get from a spot realistically.
Additionally, keeping close tabs on the tides will ensure that you don’t go surf fishing when tides are rough. An accident is more likely with such tides.
Don’t Ignore the Weather
You should never ignore the atmospheric conditions, especially if you’ll be surf fishing when it’s dark out. Fishing at night is a lot more difficult when it’s pouring.
But, high winds and rough surf will make it dangerous for you to be close to the beach. It’s also unlikely for you to catch fish under such conditions. To know the day’s forecast, use a standard weather app.
Learn the Rigs You Will Be Using
Knowing how to properly set surf fishing rigs is a crucial part of surf fishing. A successful time on the water will depend on the types of rigs that you use. Prepare a minimum of two rigs should you lose your rig.
Organize your rig by using a leader wallet. This way, you have easy access to hooks, leader materials, and sinkers when there’s a need for them. Always remember that the low visibility from night surf fishing makes things a lot more difficult.
Surf fishing from dusk to dawn is often a lot more productive in comparison to daytime surf fishing.
Many predatory fish that you can find in the surf are nocturnal, which is why their feeding habits occur at night. You will have a much better chance of landing bigger fish at night and fish are within a casting distance at nighttime.
Remember the aforementioned tips and have fun out in the water! You’ll find night surf fishing more enjoyable as there’s less competition and activity from other surfers, swimmers, and anglers.