When it comes to fishing, there is undoubtedly a plethora of rules and tried & tested principles that are regularly recommended to beginners. However, there are always exceptions, just like in any other sport and hobby.
Fishermen exploring the American southern lakes and other water reservoirs are often heard complaining about the lack of activity. This complaint usually boils down to the fact that these lakes are, more often than not, pretty clear, and these fishermen associate the lack of activity with the clear water. However, if you happen to meet some of the fishing enthusiasts from the northern rivers, the complaints there are the same, that of low activity, but for a different reason.
In the north, people seem to associate the muddy water with the lack of game fish and poor activity. Anglers in the South wanted the water to be dirtier so the fish would be less careful and cautious, whereas in the north, anglers think the clear water enables fish to see the lure clearly, hence the better yield in clear water.
There is no possibility of reaching a consensus regarding what defines clear water to certain fishermen. However, there are still some ways to make sure that you end up with good gain regardless of the clarity of the water.
Light/Thin line usage
Southern anglers spend a lot of their time fishing natural lakes with very clear flowage and have to deal with the challenges that these clear waters bring. Amongst these southern sportsmen, the most famous and perhaps the most effective monofilament fishing line has to be the one that they term as ‘light’. The efficiency of the light line in the clear water is proven, and since it’s considerably thinner than traditional lines, it works perfectly with smaller lures.
The productivity of thin line is also down to its ability to sink lures deeper and its high sensitivity. The fact of the matter is that it simply comes down to the diameter, and if you play your cards right and get a premium nylon line, or even better, a braided microfilament line, you can, in fact, utilize the benefits of stronger and heavier line with a diameter of a smaller, much thinner line.
In the southern waters, thinner lines work just great, since there aren’t many obstructions such as stumps, rogue timber or even heavy vegetation. However, even in the places where obstructions are in great abundance, you can still end up victorious with a heavy basket if you use the right thin line and tackle effectively.
The good old stealth approach
If you go through all the books written in the past century on successful fishing practices, you will come across one recommendation over and over again, and that is to do with the practice of being stealthy and quiet while fishing. Further probing will reveal that experts over the years have written extensively about how to better utilize the wariness of most of the freshwater fish, and how being stealthy can reward you in the long run with a better catch. Stream trout anglers greatly appreciate the stealth approach to exploit the wariness of fish.
However, other angling enthusiasts haven’t yet caught up on this aspect of freshwater fishing. It would be very unwise, even perhaps rather naive, to think that fish over the years have become less cautious. If anything, the fish have gotten more clever; they are more aware of various baiting techniques than in the past and more aware of the temperature shifts than they were years ago. If you are an avid hunter of wild game, you must be aware of the profitability and efficiency of being stealthy.
Most wild animals do not appreciate a two-legged and armed foe popping up out of nowhere. Such behavior spooks them and the subsequent reaction of the wild creature can never be predicted accurately. Likewise, if you are fishing in deep water, act like a hunter and keep a safe distance with a lower profile and maintain as much silence and stealth as possible.
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