One question often posed by most anglers is when is it too windy to fish? The simple answer is when the wind blows beyond 20 to 25 knots, it’s best to take back that bass fishing rod and postpone the idea until the winds have calmed down.
Are you fishing from the shore or in a boat? All these factors dictate your safety level and success in fishing under windy conditions.
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How Does Wind Affect Your Fishing?
In truth, fishing in windy conditions can be difficult. It’s especially hard on your braided fishing line, which will take a lot of abuse from both your conventional reel and from being beaten against branches and rocks as you try to land that fish. As long as you don’t go too far out into rough waters, though, you should be able to keep your fishing pole afloat even in 25 mph winds.
The more immediate problem with wind is its impact on a cast. The ultralight spinning reel (and thus the line) will always move away from where you want it to go if there’s a strong enough gust of wind. When casting into tall reeds or grasses, your lure will likely get wrapped around branches or weeds instead of landing in open water as planned.
Since the open ocean is unprotected from strong winds, the water will become choppy as soon as the wind picks up. Sportfishing boats are often large enough to handle the choppy waters, but the additional fuel needed to fend off strong winds is a price to pay.
When it comes to agitating lower-trophic levels, the wind is your friend. A feeding frenzy usually follows, which moves up the food chain. When the wind picks up, so does the biting.
However, when the wind is too strong, it’s difficult to keep baits in motion. When the strong winds are blowing, it’s tough to utilize surface lake lures because they behave unpredictably, attracting fewer bites.
To avoid these problems, choose calm days for fishing. If you have no choice but to go out in high winds, consider using lighter tackle like a light rod and small frog lures that won’t get blown off course by strong gusts of wind.
Remember: You might not catch many fish, but at least they’ll be safe! That’s why it’s always important to ask yourself, when is it too windy to fish before you head out to the lake or ocean.
How Much Wind is Too Much for Fishing?
According to the National Weather Service, wind speeds between 7 and 10 miles per hour are ideal for recreational fishing. You’ll catch fish while still having a pleasant experience on your day out. So, now that you know what the best wind speed for fishing is, what happens when there’s too much wind?
Depending on the size of your boat, you will be able to fish or navigate in a variety of weather situations. Larger vessels are more resistant to swamping and capsize in tougher weather. Between the 30-foot and 80-foot ranges, offshore vessels are vastly different. However, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
As a rule of thumb, anything above three feet of water with gusts of 20 to 25 knots is unsafe for fishing. It’s also a good idea to check the spacing between the waves since smooth waves are formed when they’re far enough away. In any case, with winds expected to reach 25 mph, it’s doubtful that the waves would be tiny and dispersed.
If there are sustained winds above 20 mph, it becomes more difficult to fish. The most difficult fishing conditions occur when there are sustained winds between 35 and 50 mph.
Your best bet in these situations will be near-shore areas or sheltered bays where there isn’t as much wave action and boat traffic; you may not catch anything at all in these spots but at least you won’t be tossed around like a rag doll!
When is It Too Windy to Go Fishing?
Is 15 mph wind strong for fishing? It’s not always easy to decide whether or not a day on the water is worth it. If you check your local weather reports and find yourself with a wind speed of at least 15 mph, you may want to put that fishing line away until another day.
This measurement may seem fairly high, but you might be surprised just how easy it can be for winds in excess of 15 mph to blow your inflatable boat back into shore or make casting next to impossible.
Find yourself facing strong headwinds on top of already choppy waters? Stay on land; a day out there will likely end up being more trouble than it’s worth.
Bass Fishing in Windy Conditions
Many anglers want to go fishing when there’s a strong wind blowing. After all, they think the wind will make everything easier. Yet while there are a few advantages to fishing in windy conditions, you must use caution when bass fishing in windy conditions.
It can be a very dangerous time to head out on your boat for several reasons. For one thing, if you get blown off course or into shallow water, it could result in an expensive mishap that could damage your equipment and lead to personal injury.
If you’re going out on a large body of water such as Lake Erie or Lake Ontario where currents are strong, winds might blow you far from shore and put you at risk of getting lost or not being able to find your way back home before dark.
Check the Weather Forecast
If you’re thinking about going fishing in a high wind, you should check with your local weather bureau. You can go online and find lots of tools that will let you know if high winds are predicted in your area.
If there are already high winds when you go out, consider calling it quits earlier than planned. Your boat may be too close to rough seas for a safe journey back to shore!
Not sure if something’s dangerous or not? Be extra cautious and don’t take any chances with your safety or those around you. When in doubt, just play it safe!
If there’s thunder and lightning, don’t even think about going out. Not only are you in danger of being struck by lightning, but there’s also a good chance that your boat will be turned over by the wind. In fact, some people say that if you can hear thunder, then it’s already too late – there could already be a storm nearby.
So, when is it too windy to fish? Whether you decide to go fishing in high winds depends on your boat and other personal factors. If you have a small, lightweight boat that’s easily knocked around, you’ll probably want to wait for calmer weather.
If you’re a beginner or unskilled at boating, too much wind can be dangerous; if the weather’s bad enough, even experienced sailors might head home early. On top of all that, high winds can make fish harder to catch, or they might not be biting at all!