Take Advantage of Technology

By Billy Darby:

Want to bring in a heavier bag, impress your buddies, have plain ole “better luck” or improve your club standings? Then take advantage of the technology that is available to you, specifically your ELECTRONICS and NAVIGATION CHARTS.

Don’t wait until the morning of your trip to prepare for your day on the water. Begin days before by selecting your intended approach by sitting in front of your units in the shelter or downloading your lake map to your computer. Study the CONTOURS and look for rapid changes in the spread of contour lines, especially lines that run so close together and become so dense that all the lines seem to run together making a dark streak. Play close attention to the desired expected pattern depths according to seasons where these contours merge, then study the adjoining perpendicular erratic patterns that indicate uneven terrain such as humps, ditches, road beds, rock piles, debris, etc. Mark these spots with an icon that is recognizable for further study.

After you arrive, carefully study your sonar and place markers on potential sweet spots. If you have found a new honey hole, then remark it with an appropriate icon and name it, if not then simply delete it. Some gold mines are too obvious and some are hidden treasures, especially the veins that lead to the mother lode. Your skill level will improve with practice whether you are a novice or an old pro, at home or on the water. I know, I learn something new every time I hit the water or just sit in my boat under the shed trying to unscramble my brain figuring out why I spent 50 years and thousands of gallons of gas attempting to learn every foot of Lake Eufaula when all I had to do was wait a while and spend less than $200.00 on an electronic chip.

Billy Darby is a professional guide on Lake Eufaula. He can be reached at imfishing4u@windstream.net or 229-768-2369 .