Warning: Use of undefined constant TD_THEME_VERSION - assumed 'TD_THEME_VERSION' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/aaaaaaaa/outdooralways.com/wp-content/plugins/td-amp/td_amp_version_check.php on line 20

Warning: Use of undefined constant TD_DEPLOY_MODE - assumed 'TD_DEPLOY_MODE' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/aaaaaaaa/outdooralways.com/wp-content/plugins/td-amp/td_amp_version_check.php on line 20

Warning: Use of undefined constant TD_DEPLOY_MODE - assumed 'TD_DEPLOY_MODE' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/aaaaaaaa/outdooralways.com/wp-content/plugins/td-amp/td_amp_version_check.php on line 20

Warning: Use of undefined constant TD_THEME_VERSION - assumed 'TD_THEME_VERSION' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/aaaaaaaa/outdooralways.com/wp-content/plugins/td-amp/td_amp_version_check.php on line 25

Warning: Use of undefined constant TD_THEME_NAME - assumed 'TD_THEME_NAME' (this will throw an Error in a future version of PHP) in /home/aaaaaaaa/outdooralways.com/wp-content/plugins/td-amp/td_amp_version_check.php on line 25
How to Prepare for Offshore Fishing? - OUTDOOR ALWAYS

How to Prepare for Offshore Fishing?

There’s something so alluring about heading out on the open water with dreams of landing that photo-worthy whopper. Even if you return to shore empty-handed, you’ll have enjoyed a scenic adventure and gained some experience. Whether you’re a first-timer gearing up for a family vacation or a seasoned angler looking to get into the saltwater game, some preparation is in order. Follow these tips to make your offshore excursion as productive as possible.

1. Know Your Skill Level

If you’re not yet familiar with the ins and outs of offshore angling, it’s best to bring an expert along to show you the ropes. There are a lot of technical details to consider, and in these early stages of your saltwater fishing career, you need to be able to focus on the fishing itself. If you don’t have any knowledgeable fishing buddies, consider chartering a boat or hiring a guide.

2. Form a Plan

How you prep for your voyage depends largely on your location and the fish species you’re planning to target. There’s a major difference between fishing for sea bass and mackerel and trolling for marlin and swordfish! Of course, if you’re going out on a chartered boat, they’ll take care of that aspect. 

If you’re going out with your own crew, you’ll need to bring the right gear and bait and utilize specific techniques depending on your game plan. You’ll also want to learn about the local species, when they’re hungry, where they hang out, and so on. If you’re not sure where to start, talk to the locals. Do your homework before heading out so you can cast with confidence.

3. Gear Up

If you’re chartering a boat, your equipment and license will most likely be provided for you, but make sure you double-check in advance. If you’re heading out with a crew, make sure you get your licenses and permits taken care of in advance. You might want to consider going beyond the basics with your gear. 

While you can technically enjoy a day of saltwater fishing with the classic rod and reel, there are tried-and-true methods and equipment that you should keep in mind. There’s nothing wrong with experimenting and finding your own approach — if you prefer to drop your line and hope for the best, you might get lucky, but you’re drastically minimizing your chances. Offshore angling takes skill, but your success is also based heavily on your equipment.

For example, using a dredge is an extremely effective technique that can drastically boost your odds. When targeting pelagic gamefish, your goal is to entice them to come up to the surface. Naturally, one hanging line isn’t likely to capture their attention. Dredges, daisy chains, and spreader bars are much more visually stimulating, as they essentially allow you to fish with an entire school of bait fish (or artificial bait), simulating your prey’s usual preferred meals.

You can get creative with these types of rigs in the same way you change up your lures, lines, rods, and reels for freshwater fishing, but on a larger scale. You can experiment with different styles, configurations, colors, sizes, combinations, and so on. If you don’t want to get too in-depth with it, you can simply use complete fishing dredge kits that are ready to drop.

4. Prep Your Bait 

Bait is a very personal choice. You could ask ten different offshore anglers what they recommend, and you’ll probably get ten different answers. Just like with freshwater fishing, it’s best to bring a kit with plenty of options.

If you’re using fresh bait, you should salt or brine it, so it lasts longer in the water. This simple technique goes a long way in allowing you to troll for longer periods of time while also reducing waste.

You should also get familiar with various rigging techniques. How you rig your bait, hooks, and sinkers can affect how it moves through the water, how it hooks your prey, how quickly you can switch out your bait, and other various factors. Here are some of the most popular rigging methods you should know about:

  • The pin rig 
  • The pin-less rig 
  • The circle hook 
  • The two-hook bottom rig
  • The three-way rig
  • The Carolina rig
  • The popping cork

5. Pack Smart

It’s easy to be so focused on your fishing equipment that you forget to bring the necessities. Before heading out, make a list and check it twice. Nothing ruins a nice day of fishing faster than realizing you left something important behind. 

Seasoned offshore anglers tend to have their go-to items, and checking your inventory will become second nature after enough trips. For now, it’s better safe to be sorry. Pack more than what you think you need — it’s better to have too much than not enough. Here are some of the most crucial items you should have on your list:

  • Food and water
  • Separate coolers for bait, personal food and drinks, and anything you catch
  • Plenty of ice and ice packs
  • More spare bait and tackle than you think you’ll need
  • Tools like buckets, nets, gaffs, pliers, knives, scissors, and hook removers
  • Fish fighting belts to prevent injury when reeling in large game fish
  • Sunscreen and a hat
  • Polarized sunglasses
  • First-aid kit
  • Dramamine (in case someone gets seasick)
  • Clothing layers for all weather conditions
  • Towels and an extra change of clothes
  • Waterproof containers for wallets, phones, and other perishables

Learn From the Experience

Offshore angling is one of the most exciting trips for thrill seekers, but keep your expectations realistic. Even the pros don’t always return home with coolers full of fish. Spending time on the water with your crew is what it’s all about — if you land a whopper, that’s just a bonus. Like any hobby, experience leads to skill, so be actively absorbing as much information as you can so you’re mentally prepped for the next trip.

Image: unsplash.com

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.