Watch Those Fronts

Photo by Michael Seeley

Fall is the best time of year to go fishing. Almost regardless of the species, the imminent onset of winter puts fish in a feeding mood. They might be on the move down the coast to their wintering grounds, feeding up on an abundance of bait flushing through the passes or putting on the feedbag in a reservoir to fatten up for the cold months.

On top of that, conditions for the angler are pleasant. Cooler days make for easy angling, but there’s also something you should watch out for this time of year: weather. Fronts can be strong an unpredictable this time of year. Keeping an eye on the weather forecast will keep you safer, and it can also lead you to better fishing.

Those cool post-frontal days with high blue skies and bright sunshine might be perfect for a picnic in the park, but they are not the best time to go fishing. Fish seem to sense the dropping barometer with falling pressure of an approaching weather system. Often they feed heavily right before the pressure drops.

The best time to go fishing is whenever you can, but if that day coincides with pre-frontal conditions, you’re in business. But things can get tricky when you’re out on the water in a boat with a storm rolling in. Download a good weather radar app on your phone, watch the weather predictions and winds, and have an idea of what to expect before leaving the dock.

Plan your trips around the weather, so that you’re close to safe harbor well in advance of an approaching storm. And keep an eye on things while you’re out there. Conditions can change very quickly this time of year, and it’s better to call it a day early than to get caught in a bad situation.

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