I can’t think of anything better than sitting along the bank of a river with my pole in hand. I love hiking into spots that are hard to reach and finding that little opening that will allow me access to the rivers edge. I’m sure there are others out there that would enjoy this as well if they just knew how to river fish. River fishing can be frustrating if you have never done it before and you don’t really know what you are doing. I am going to attempt to give you a quick lesson on how to fish a river so you to can enjoy what I love so much.
The first thing to remember when learning how to river fish is that your bait will flow past the fish very rapidly. Regardless of the type of fishing you are doing (bait, lure, or fly), you need to make sure whatever is at the end of your line looks as close to the natural food sources as possible. Fish will often eat anything the passes in front of them, they will swallow any food and will spit out anything that is not food. It is very important when learning how to fish a river that you can tell when fish are doing this. You need to be able to feel the lightest movements on your rod and react to it. If the fish don’t happen to feeding when you are out you can use the great technique of annoying them. This simply involves rapid casting into the same area until you upset them enough to strike.
When you are fishing a river it is okay to fish the shallower areas, but just remember you should be in search of the deeper parts of the river. The pools are where a majority of the fish are going to be located so this is where you need to spend the majority of your time. Another really big thing to remember is to match your gear with the fish you are going after. If you are going after trout in the river than you want a rod that is going to be light and responsive. You want to make sure you are going to feel everything so you can react to the fish. If you are going for trout leave the monster rod at home, you aren’t going deep sea fishing.
One of the most important things to remember when learning how to river fish is to not spook the fish before you even get into the water. When you are approaching the spot you are going to fish walk lightly and don’t make a lot of noise. This means not snap branches by the rivers edge or knock loose rocks into the water. The sounds you make as you approach the river will travel through the water and possibly scare the fish away before you even get the chance to cast.
One final piece of advice when learning how to river fish is to seek the advice of locals. Go to your local tackle shops and talk to the people working there. Most of the time they will know the good spots to fish and will know when the best time of the day to go is. They should also be able to tell you how the fishing is and what the fish might be biting on.
Actually there is one more thing that is the most important of them all. Go out and have fun! Take the time to explore different areas of the river and find a place you like. Even if you don’t get any fish on a day out by the river it should still be a better day than sitting at home.