Tips on Boat Fishing: How to Catch More Fish from a Boat

Fishing from a boat is a whole different experience than fishing on land. Letting the waves carry you up and down is a lot more relaxing than sitting in a chair on solid land.

Moreover, being in the middle of the water makes it easier to find a richer and more suitable fishing spot.

And if you want to get the most out of it, you have to prepare your knowledge as much as your gear.

So here are some tips for fishing from a boat.

Pack Essentials

When you’re going on a boat fishing trip, you should pack all the essentials that will make the experience as convenient as possible.

These include a tackle box, needle nose pliers, water, sunscreen, nose pliers, bug spray, and a first aid kit.

Fishing Gear

You should prepare proper bait that catches the eye of your target fish. So do your research thoroughly. 

Also, whether you're going to use live bait or artificial lure, make sure you know how to use them optimally.

Tip: Handle the bait with gloves or clean hands as traces of smell could deter the fish away from your bait. The fact that fish have a strong sense of smell is actually a little known fact.

Make sure the gear you use suits the fishing that you do.

For example, if you’re fishing in saltwater, make sure you have a proper saltwater spinning reel.

Dressing for the Weather

When you’re shopping from a boat, chances are that you’ll get exposed to a lot of sunlight. That’s why you should wear polarized sunglasses to keep UV rays from fatiguing your eyes and also to reduce the glare on the water.

Moreover, check the forecast to see if there would be any strong winds, drizzle, or cold. Make sure you’re wearing enough layers to match the weather and bring waterproof gear if there will be rain.

If you’re going to explore some shallow spaces, you could also wear waterproof boots to get in and out of the water for exploration.

Laws and Regulations

A very important thing to research is the laws and regulations of an area. Make sure you have the proper permits and licenses before you go on your adventures.

Some areas ban certain baits or fish, so make sure you’re not breaking any laws.


Your vessel should be in top condition before you go in open waters.

So make sure you have an anchor of a proper size and enough chain to control your boat's position in the water.

Minding your Technique

While it’s true that you can simply drop your bait and wait for something to latch onto it, you should practice other methods to increase the chances of catching bigger fish.


Trolling means letting a baited line trail behind a slow-moving boat. You simply cast the line and secure the pole onto the boat. It’s the most effective way to cover a wider area as well as catch fish with less effort.

It’s suitable when you’re fishing in a lake or sea.

Tip: If you’re in the sea and you know there’s a dominant swell, move your boat in its direction as this will probably be the same direction the bigger catches are taking.

These catches are more likely to follow the lure when it’s moving in their direction.

Trolling, Moving and Casting

On the other hand, if you’re fishing in a lake, you can use a combination of trolling, moving, and casting.

You simply move along the shoreline and stop between two areas in which you know fish are abundant.

Then, you cast your line and do the same around the lake to catch as big and many fish as you can.

Using Modern Technology

Use a sounder or fishfinder to track your fish, show you the depth at which they swim, and the areas beneath and around your boat.

Learning the area in which you’re fishing can increase the chances of you catching more fish.

Moreover, a temperature meter indicates the underwater temperature, which affects the number and activity of the fish you're trying to catch.


Final Thoughts

Whether you're fishing from a boat or onshore, in saltwater or freshwater, there's one thing that any angler must possess to be successful: patience.

So just make sure you’re well-prepared, well-informed, and stocked on a lot of patience and determination.

Justin Anderson

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