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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Someone suggested a while back that we start a trout tip thread (along the same lines as the flounder tip one). It seems odd for me to start this one, while I've been flounder fishing all my life, I've only been targeting Sea Trout the last year or so and am very much a newbie (like my king fishing skills). But hey - someone has to do it.

I'll start with record keeping. Yes I know this is suppose to be about fishing not paperwork but the ole timers tell me it's important to keep good records on trout fishing. See if they bite in a certain spot at a certain time under certain conditions, you can count on catching them in the same location under those circumstances again and again. Trout are hunters, unlike flounder, they move about a lot looking for munchies, they follow the bait. However they are NOT migratory. They stay in one general area most of there life and can live to be 8-10 years old. They know the bait patterns for their area VERY well, so they move about within the territory in cycles.

The important data to keep is - location (of course), time of day, tide cycle, water temp, and moon phase. By keeping this data you can then match current conditions (moon phase, tide cycle, time of day, temps) to similiar ones where you had good luck and then go to that spot and fish that way. You might want to record the type of bait used and what kind of adult beverages you drank that day :rolleyes: too.

Sounds like a lot of work at first but it doesn't take much time at all really. It seems confusing sometimes - one person will say - it's all about the time of day, another will say tide cycle is the main factor, another the moon phase, location, ect. You begin to wonder about what's really important. Well the guys catching Trout under almost all circumstances tell me it's ALL important. But only when viewed all together (not just a single piece of information).

The idea is that the Trout are always here and will eat, it's a matter of knowing where for the current conditions. Like Mrs Folojoy says - (roughly paraphrased) this fishing is real easy, just find some hungry fish and feed them. :D Your log should help you find the hungry ones!

I've been keeping a log the last year or so and just this week decided to do an online version in a Blog. The info is available to everyone, however the exact location information is encrpyted (and I'll have turn you into chum if ya break the code.... just kidding, sort of, kinda of...well maybe) but I will give general location info. I decided not to go back and enter all the previous data as I'm not a fast typist and I'd rather fish:p. So I started with this week's flounder (yes I keep records on them too but for different reasons).

http://hampsteadfishing.blogspot.com/

Course for those of us who are lazy, another technique that works is to just ride around in your boat with the binoculars and look for the guy CATCHING fish and then make nice as you pull in beside him and hope he's in a good mood :rolleyes: (NOT).
 

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Mike --- Good job! and good blog! This will probably be one of the better threads. Of all the fishing I have ever done and thats been lot, speckled trout fishing is my favorite and without a doubt the most challenging. Number one you have got to have a world of patience ( some of us old salt regulars will stand on a dock fishing so long, boats will come in and the mate will try to tie a bow line to our legs) and be a glutton for punishment if you really expect to catch them consistantly. Each item you mentioned can be expanded upon. The only things I see you missed right off in records would be a more recent question about barametric pressure. Wind speeds and direction are important where I fish. I don't bother to even try them in a E or SE wind direction. I have some poorly kept records on calenders I have saved, but have things pretty well set in my mind. This will improve when I can get one of my grandkids down here at the coast to set up a log on on my computer for me. I think one good item that will come out on this thread is why trout fishermen are so protective about their favorite holes.

On your last item, when moved in on, we pretend to be bottom fishing and act like we are dumb as bricks.

Later, Forrest
 

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I'm not above using binocs or hiding in duck blinds to observe when I get in a slump, but knowing about the 10 mile wrong direction rule. I'll patiently wait till they leave or beat them back there tomorrow.:D :D

Later, Forrest
 

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Great thread guys and nice blog Mike! Thanks for adding a link back to NCangler.com too! ;)

It is really interesting that you brought up record keeping and the blog idea. I have been thinking about adding a fishing log program to NCangler.com for some time and Forrest emailed me about it last week so I started to move on it. I actually have a programmer working on an online fishing log program right now. I'm not sure when he will have it ready but it will include each of the items you guys mentioned and you'll have the option of having a 'shared' or 'private' record. The shared information will be searchable in a database. The private record will only be accessible by the registered member. It could become a powerful database of NC fishing across the state.

Since the cat is out of the bag :D let me know what you think and what information you'd specifically like included since he hasn't finished programming the database yet.

I also want the programmer to work up fishing reports blog system for us after we get the fishing log up and running.

Very cool!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Wow! That will be great Randy. When Forrest mentioned the computer log, I started doing a search for one cause it sounded like a great idea. Now I don't have too!

The blog thing is really informal and I'm sure will evolve. I keep a much more detailed written log (has all the results from a trip cause the strike outs are just important as the catches). An electronic log is the way to go though.

I added the pressure and wind info to my blog reports, Thanks Forrest!
 

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Guys, you really got my attention. I totally concur with what Hampsteadfishing and Fojoloy are saying about trout and the online log is a GREAT IDEA. MIKE : If you have only been seriously speck fishing for a year you have done some pretty fast learning. Keep up the good work. Knowing what the weather was the day before and how it is changing is bordering on information overload but It has a lot to do with fish behavior also. Keep in mind that salinity and disolved oxygen are important but I would not suggest trying to log them unles you have the instrumentation and computer onboard. Usually they are specific to one location and are either a go or no go call. One thing that a lot of people overlookalso is that waterlevel can have a big effect on some spots. The water level will vary from high tide to high tide depending on wind and moon phase and also the tilt of the earth relative to the sun. Not necesaarily something for the log but an important consideration when you are on the water. AL
 

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This is going to be a good one! Referring to testing waters for chemical property paramenters, refuse to go there, I have necessary equipement at my disposal and honestly feel it has a great bearing on triggering their feeding. Fishing has been here since the beginning of time. Its primative appeal is what makes it. I compare some methods with spotter planes for netters and lines have to be drawn for their protection. Not that I'm hurting their population.( These remarks are my personal feelings only). When people get on my boat their first question is, Wheres your fish finder?-- I don't got one. I do have a digital depth finder And a 10 ft pole on board for back up and pushing off shoals.
Now back to record keeping. I'm really looking forward to participating in this thread and looking forward to everyones input.
I just have a feeling when we get our records compiled, we gonna find MR. SPECK has been keeping his own records and we will have to start all over again.:D
 

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I wasn't suggesting that anyone load their boat up with electronics in order to fish. I guess I'm as electronics free as it gets. The only electronics you need are a good cell phone preferablly one with picture capabilites so you can call for help or call Fojo when you have a limit of big specks just to rub it in in case he's in a slump. That's where the camera really shines. Depthfinders are a good option are as a vhf radio. Basically the point I was trying to make is that there are a lot of variables to consider even though in my opinion as important as they may be, the are too impractical to track. If you live on the water one glance will tell you alot.(wind direction and speed , turbibidity, water level, tide direction and speed ) Other things such as moon phase and salinity or dissolved oxygen issues algae blooms etc should be considered when determining where to fish. The area you are fishing will determine which of these conditions are important to track and when they will most likely affect the fishing. From April to Aug. you definitely want to be in high salinity areas to catch the bigger trout. In July-Sept. dissolved oxygen can come into play in some places. In areas with a lot of recent rainfall low salinity can be a factor. These factors basically just make or break certain areas and have little bearing on others. I have seen them all come into play in areas I was fishing at one time or another though. AL
 

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Randy

Great idea for the log. I have a couple of them. Some are easy to use but don't have enough types of input. Others have many types of input and reports which are not easy to use. Somewhere between might be the answer. Easy to use is very important or you loose interest in keeping data.
 

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I've already posted about a good trout catch for this AM on another thread. I guess this one may belong under the tips. I came in so cold this AM I soaked my feet in the bath tub to get them warmed up. Felt so good I undressed and soaked all over.
Around 3 PM took a notion to go back trout fishing again since it had warmed up to about 45. I arrived at one of the bridges and had been fishing about 15 min. when one by one some of the old timers started parking on the side of the road. A total of five of us old timers were standing there fishing. Within another 15 min. specks started tearing it up. Our average ages ranged from 65 to 75. WOW! Here is over 200 years of trout fishing experience standing together slaying trout and you better believe it was a lively time in addition to catching fish.:D
I noticed we all had a few things in common:
1- Nobody knew what tide it was.
2- Half of us didn't have our watches on and didn't know the time of day.
3- Everyone had only one favorite trout rod with their own favorite lures.
4-Nobody had a tackle box, each of us were carrying what we needed in our pockets.
5-Nobody had a cooler to keep their catch , among us was one laundry bag, three onion bags and a five gal. bucket, but a load of speckled trout.

Wouldn't know where to put an accumulation of experience like this in the log.:)

Later, Forrest
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well I have a GPS/depthfinder/fish finder on board but only use the depth finder inshore. But when it comes to bottom fishing in the ocean - a GPS and fishfinder come in handy. If you ever been grouper fishing, you know 6 feet can be like six miles. Ont he other hand - I can't see how either would help with trout fishing. For salinity levels, well there always the taste test...:p

Al - concerning water levels, you mentioned in an earlier thread about trout needed a certain amount of water for a feeling of security - so from that point of view, water levels would come into play - low tides can vary a lot - so if you know its an extreme low tide then you may want to avoid skinny water.

Thanks Al for the comment on my trout fishing - it's a lot like some of the other fishing I've done over the years, so it was just a matter of adapting my knowledge - of course I still have a LOT and i do mean a lot to learn.
 

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I try to go by water level for a number of reasons. #1. navigation #2. it affects where the fish and bait can be found #3. You never have to add or subtract minutes just look around and you will get the picture #4.tide predictions are rarely 100% right and never given for the out of the way places so you must develop your own set of indicators to let you know if you can safely cross an oyster reef and how long it will be before you can't make it back across. # 5 when you are in a kayak you can get trapped way out on a mud flat if you do not pay attention to the water level (talk about a drag...) Tide charts are generally a troublesome lie in skinny water. 6. extreme water levels mean an extreme current in many locations.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
In an effort to shed some light on the timing of the trout bite as discussed above, I found numerous references to the fact that Sea Trout have eyes built for low light conditions thus explaining their tendency to bite in the early and late hours of the day as well as around lighted areas at night. Here's a good example of what I found:

[FONT=Comic Sans MS,Tekton,Blueprint,Dom Casual,Dom Casual BT][SIZE=-1]Trout have eyes that were designed for low light conditions. Therefore, trout fishing is generally better early and late in the day most of the time (especially before and after a tide change). Trout use the ambient light in the sky and moonlight to locate food at night. Lighted docks and bridges in the sounds and creeks are excellent places to catch trout.

I also have found some more info on the tidal change effect on Trout. There really is some interesting science behind all this.

Tight lines,
Mike



[/SIZE][/FONT]
 

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I think the reason behind the tidal change theory is that the currents are slower and trout seem to avoid fast currents and rough surf. The currents caused by the ebb and flow of the tide are weakest near the tide changes. AL
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Al - yeah I've read and heard that from numerous sources as well. I find it helpful to understand the "why", if nothing else it's interesting.

A few old salts have told me of a technique they call "tide chasing". It goes like this: the idea is to fish the first part of the tide change, so start near the inlet and work your way back to the Sound. After 20-30 minutes or when the fish stop biting move further inland so that you are at the start of the tide change for that spot and so forth. Makes a lot of sense if you subscribe to the theory that the Trout bite better at tide changes.

I tried it today but the Trout were only biting at sunrise so it was a wasted effort except I now have my spots and timing worked out. I'll work up a couple more routes/spot combinations as well.

If anyone has had luck with "tide chasing" the Trout bite, I'd love to here about your expierences.

Tight lines to all,
Mike
 

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Mike--- Where I speck fish is in the connecting waterways between sounds about ten miles from nearest inlet, the water levels are not as noticeable here on tides changes as the currents. I use a reverse strategy. I'll anchor or drift along the tide lines knowing trout will be chasing the tides coming and going. I guess I am too lazy to chase them, but it sounds like a good idea. I guess I am what you call a laid back fisherman.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Forrest - that makes sense about the water levels that far from the inlets being less. I fish very close to the inlets - mostly 1 mile or less so we get BIG water changes, often it's a 3-4 foot change.

Something a lot of people may not realize is that the water change is not even over the cycle - most of the water changes right in the middle two hours of the half cycle - but even that varies by location and current conditions.

I like to try to figure this stuff out but at the end of the day, I just plain like to fish and when not fishing, think about fish related STUFF.

Tight lines to ya!
Mike
 

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Different strokes for different folks I guess. I doubt I can come up with a memory of not knowing the tide when fishing in the last 40 or so years, though suppose there may have been a few times. Never a "pocket" person (takes too long to untangle) but have hooks and such all over my hat. I never wore and still don't wear a watch. A small pocket type tackle container is one of those "new fangled" ideas that I like. Often one rod but most always a backup in the truck. Not always a cooler but they sure as heck kept the beer cold going in and the fish cold going home. Most importantly though, always do it "your" way if that's what ya like.
 
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