Surf fishing is simply the act of fishing from shore. To surf fish for reds or any other fish, you don’t need a boat or a kayak; with the right tackle and technique, you are good to go. Novice anglers may find this type of fishing challenging because they lack the experience. In this article, we’ll be providing beginners with some valuable tips while surf fishing for red drum.
When surf fishing for reds, it is important that you fish base on the tides for the best outcome. This type of fishing involves a good amount of body strength. As soon as you have your surf-fishing rig, you will want to cast as far as possible. Do this while standing close to the surf and remember, the farther you cast, the better your chances of being successful.
Surf fishing is an amazing way to fish, especially for beginners. Why? Because you don’t require an expensive boat or a kayak. As soon as you are conversant with this type of fishing, you will find it enjoyable. Fishing the surfs also comes with a great all-encompassing experience. Sit tight as I provide you with some important surf fishing tips.
Surf Fishing for Red Drum – Tips for Beginners
You can catch reds in a variety of ways: on the water and on the shore. However, your success will be determined by your level of experience regardless of how you choose to catch this awesome sport fish.
Surf fishing is a very simple and cheap way to catch any fish of your choice. With a tackle and the right knowledge, you can catch reds all day long. On the flip side, if you are a beginner surf fishing for reds might be challenging. So, if you are a beginner who has a thing for catching reds on the shore, what do you do?
- Use a long and strong rod; it will enable you to cast farther.
- Study the beach and the water. Locating the perfect slough (undisturbed water between the beach and outer bar), breaks in sand bars, including inlet pockets, can be the difference between a good day and a frustrating day.
- Don’t go too deep into the water as you may scare off the redfish. Many of these fishes will be located a few meters off the beach because this is where they are best protected from predators.
- Look out for sharks, particularly when walking in channels between sand bars.
- Get a good pair of polarized glasses and some lenses cleaning wipes. Thee glasses will make it easy for you to spot fishes in the waves regardless of the sun.
- Look after your surf fishing tackle as it’s very certain that it’ll come in contact with the corrosive saltwater while surf fishing, Clean them with fresh water for proper maintenance.
- If you are finding it hard to spot reds, get some live or dead cut-bait and use it to lure the fishes out.
When surf fishing, the tackle you use is very important. As we move further, we’ll be recommending some effective tackle for your surf fishing escapade.
How do you get the Red Drum in the surf?
Red drum can be found on the surf or away from the surf. You can catch them using any approach that suits you. To record good success in your surf fishing adventure, you must know the process. You must also equip yourself with the right surf fishing tackle such as the best red drum reels, rods, etc. (I have provided the best tackle (rods, reels, line, etc.) for reds in my other article regardless of the way you tend to fish).
Most anglers who are keen on surf fishing utilize a minimum of two or three red drum fishing rods at a time. You simply cast out with the rod and allow the bait soak, then go to the next rod until all your lines are in the water. The more lines you have out, the greater your catch rate will be. However, don’t be overzealous. You want to ensure that you can handle all the rods.
Make use of sand spikes when surf fishing. These rod holders are designed to hold a rod secure on the beach. You can purchase ready-made sand spikes from most tackle shops around.
What bait is best for Red Drum while Surf Fishing?
A bait is food placed on a hook to lure fishes. When fishing for red drum, the bait you use is important. If you fail to use the appropriate bait, enticing this fish may be very difficult. And if you can’t entice them, catching them will be hard.
Redfish will attack most kinds of bait, both natural and artificial. However, the best bait to use for reds remains cut mullet. Reds always find it hard to resist this bait. Frozen mullet is also effective, but it’s not as effective as cut mullet.
Other good redfish baits are live shrimp, Atlantic croaker, small crabs and menhaden shad (you can read more about the variety of live baits for red drums in this article).
What is the Best Rig for Surf Fishing?
Remember, without an effective tackle, your surf fishing adventure may not go the way you want it to. To have an excellent catch rate, you must compliment your surf fishing skills with the right tackle. A rig is one of those tackles that can play a crucial role in your success. So what rig do you use for this type of fishing?
When it comes to surf fishing, the best rig to use is the fishfinder rig. In this type of rig, the bait line moves up and down the primary line, allowing the live bait to roam undisturbed. That is very important for fishes that move carry their prey some distance before devouring. Make use of a circle hook, a hook with the barb turned back toward the shank, and the fish will hook themselves.
Other good types of rigs for surf fishing are the fireball rig, the double-drop bottom rig, the flapper rig and the pulley rig. The fish finder rig is used to target reds and striped bass.
What Size Hook Should be Used for Surf Fishing?
A hook is an important component of a tackle. It is simply a tool used for catching fish by either piercing them in the mouth or by snagging the body of the fish. When surf fishing, the size of hook you use matters. If the hook you use is too small, there might be a problem. On the other hand, if the hook is too large, you will find it hard to catch anything. So, what is the best hook size to use?
The hook size to use when surf fishing is within 2 to 3/0. You must note that a panoply of factors and variables may call for the use of larger or smaller hooks. When picking a hook size, consider factors such as your targeted species, where you’d be fishing, the type and nature of hook, and your fishing rig.
When surf fishing, always remember this: never base your choice of hooks according to the fish you are targeting. Rather, consider the bait you wish to use.
What is the Best Time for Surf Fishing?
To record great catch rate when surf fishing, you must ensure that you fish with the right tackle, fish in the right areas, adopt the right fishing techniques, and fish at the best time.
The best time to surf fish is when the tide is oscillating (If interested, you can also check my article about the tides). Two to three hours before high tide, and 2 to 3 hours outgoing tide is the best time to cast your rod and fish. However, this time depends on the area you are fishing. It is not constant for all areas. Generally, the ideal time to surf fish is two hours before and after dusk and from dawn to 10 AM.
Sometimes, the difference between success and failure as far as surf fishing is concerned, is timing. Timing can be the reason why you are catching lots of fish; it can also be the reason why you aren’t catching anything. So ensure you surf fish at the appropriate time for optimum result.
What Size Weight Should You use for Surf Fishing?
A fishing weight, also called a fishing sinker, is used alongside a fishing lure or hook to raise its sink rate, anchoring ability, and casting distance. This fishing component help force your baited hook to the bottom of the strike zone. A good weight will ensure that your hook doesn’t move with the current, thus making it easy for fish to target. What weight should you use to surf fish?
The size weight to use surf fishing depends on several factors, however, based on our extensive research including recommendations from pro anglers, a size weight of 3-4 oz. (85-113 grams) should be effective in most conditions.
Selecting the best size weight for surf fishing can be quite difficult because even with the best weight, one cannot predict if a line setup will remain stable or disappear with the current. So, you need to take a look at factors such as the tide, the current, the swell, the weather, etc., before choosing a size weight.