Fishing in 2022

The past couple of years will probably not go down as our most memorable for fun reasons but as 2022 welcomes us, we should all have some hope that we will eventually get back to normal living at some point. Fortunately, fishing is a safe activity for everybody and we live amongst some of the best fishing opportunities in the World right here in Sunset Country. If your goals are to catch more fish in 2022 maybe some of the following advice will help you out.

I probably get asked more than anything “what’s your favourite colour” or “what’s your favourite lure” and while those things can be important, by far the most important element to catching fish is actually putting your bait in front of some fish, no matter which species you’re after. To accomplish this, my strategy involves two things: trusting my electronics to show me fish in deeper water; and fishing fast to find biting fish.

Going into greater detail, trusting your electronics is easy if they are working properly. You don’t necessarily need the latest and greatest units, although the technology in this department continues to evolve rapidly, but they need to be able to show you what you’re looking for. In my experience, the biggest problem many anglers have with their electronics is the units are not getting enough power. It could be that a new battery is needed or connections could be poor. One way to test your unit is to drop a lure under the transducer. You should be able to see it and if you can, you can be sure that you will be able to see fish. If you are unable to find your lure, you may need to address your power situation.
Once you have some confidence that your unit will show you fish, it’s all about being patient until you find what you’re looking for. Knowing that walleyes will be found in deeper water around main lake structure throughout the summer and fall, it always pays to idle around a little bit until you actually see walleyes laying on the bottom instead of just pulling up to your favourite spot and dropping a line.

With most units now offering GPS capabilities, when you do find a school of fish, you can mark a waypoint and you’ll always be able to get back to that exact location, which could have fish on it again on your next trip. I also use my electronics units to mark boulders, reefs, logs, anything on the bottom that could hold a fish. When I’m fishing in deeper water for bass, lake trout or walleye, nobody in my boat is dropping a line in the water until I actually see fish on my screens.

The same goes with ice fishing. If you want to actually go out and catch a bunch of fish, it’s not about drilling a hole, sitting on a bucket and waiting for a bite. We use sonar units to watch our bait and see if there are fish beneath our hole. If I fish a hole for five minutes and don’t catch or at least see a fish, it’s on to the next hole.

When it comes to comes to finding biting fish faster, it’s all about being efficient. The biggest difference between pro anglers and weekend anglers is their ability to move around and find fish fast. We all have our favourite spots that often produce time after time, but being able to recognize quickly when your regular hot spot is not happening is key to success.

Knowing what the fish you’re after typically do based on the weather conditions or the time of year gives you a good starting point on where to look. It’s all about being open minded and trying different depths or locations. When you make contact with some fish, try to notice the details like the depth, what the wind is doing, were you around any weeds, is there current around? All of those details are important. Once you recognize why fish are located in a particular location, you’ll likely be able to duplicate the same elements and find more. Sometimes fish show up in random locations, but usually there is a reason why we catch them where we do.

All the best to everybody in 2022, I hope you all have great fishing!

A new year brings 365 more opportunities to get out and fish. With a few pro tips, maybe this will be the year you’ll reel in the big one. – Submitted photo