By Tobin Strickland
Many who are new to fishing the cooler months will struggle. That’s just a fact of winter fishing. There are items to consider this time of year. Safety on the water comes first and foremost, but after that there are considerations that determine whether you’ll have a successful day on the water.
Weather plays a bigger role now than it does in summer. Cold fronts can have significant north winds and dropping temperatures that call safety into question. Don’t jeopardize your safety. Find a weather site that has barometric pressure graphs or maps like Intellicast.com or NOAA. Besides, the fish tend to be more cooperative at least three days following a cold front and high-pressure system. To be specific, this is when the high pressure tends to begin falling. It will be beneficial to be on the water between this time and as the next cold front approaches.
Typically, the barometer will continue to fall up until the passage of the next front. Clear, bluebird, still, high-pressure days are great days to be on the water, but they’re not great days for catching. I like to see a few low, puffy clouds in the sky or even perhaps a good cloud cover and an onshore wind prior to a frontal passage. Fishing during that sort of weather will increase one’s chances of catching fish during the winter. High-pressure is bad, dropping or moderate low pressure is good.
Ultra low-pressure systems have dangerous weather associated with them, so be careful. Fishing during the passage of a low-pressure systems with high winds can be OK, but doesn’t tend to be epic. The best will be when there is a warming trend for several days with dropping, moderate barometer, and with an approaching cold front coming to the area. You can catch fish during the passage of a cold front for several hours, but be sure you have a safe protected route back to shore or fish inshore in areas with protected navigation.
Remember that wind and weather also have serious effects on tide movement. So know the weather and what the wind and tide predictions are.
Tobin Strickland created TroutSupport.com – Tech support for Speckled Trout and Red Drum fishing. Check them out on the web.