Probably the best part of
fishing. The fight can be exhilarating and suspenseful, not to
An expression used by fisherman when they believe something is biting the bait is: Nibble. A nibble can be a couple of things. We call them, "mouthing" or a "nip". Mouthing or chewing the bait is when the fish holds the bait (or part of the bait) in its mouth and is decides whether or not to eat it. It's hard to describe, but when you see the rod tip deliberately moving go up and down, or maybe the line moving around, and you know something is going on but not sure what, go ahead and set the hook. This is one of those areas where you'll learn to develop "feel" over time.
A nip is when a fish takes a quick, small bite from the bait. Perch and Walleye are notorious for this. They will nip at the bait right down to the hook until your bait is gone, wait for you to put out another piece of bait and do it again. You'll notice this nipping because you'll see the rod tip do a quick little bounce or two. Don't try to set the hook on these little "taps" unless the taps are in rapid succession. If a quick succession of "taps" doesn't happen, wait for the rod tip to quickly go down a little farther than normal. Then quickly set the hook.
When fish get real aggressive, they will strike your bait. There are a couple of different strikes. They may either inhale the bait completely or do what we call a nipping strike. If the fish inhales the bait, set the hook, and the fight is on. If the fish are just hitting the tail, or you feel a strike, but the fish does not inhale the bait they are nipping at it aggressively. That means they're interested but not motivated enough to really take it. You may want to change speed (slow it down) if your casting or trolling. You could also slightly change the color of the bait or the lure.
Once you feel the fish has the bait, do not pass go, do not collect you're $200 and whatever you do, don't panic!
I feel a nibble now what?
Setting the hook has been discussed in the previous section, but what does it really mean? It means to apply the appropriate amount of force to imbed the barb of the hook into the fish's mouth. Please whatever you do, don't set the hook like the pros do. If you set the hook to hard, you could pull that fish out of the water and send him flying into the next county! Seriously, a hookset that's too hard can damage its mouth, and you could kill it trying to get the hook out. Only use the force that's necessary.
A fisherman sets the hook by:
Either jerking the rod up vertically and back, or by jerking the rod to the side (do this only for surface bait, so you don't pull the bait into the air in your direction!)
Once the hook is set, you can fight the fish using the tips below.
Below are tips to help you get the fish in the boat:
Keep the line tight and the rod tip up.
Keep the rod slightly bent.
Use the drag.
For more information on drag see the reel page.
Horsing the fish-DON'T DO IT
Pump and Reel
Use a Net
Fighting the fish is the best part. Don't rush getting your catch into the boat. Remember, you have all day to tire it out, so enjoy the experience. Just remember, keep the rod tip up, you're line taunt, don't horse him and don't panic! Fighting does take some practice, so don't get flustered if you lose a couple in the beginning.
If you havie
any hints, suggestions, techniques or anything that you would like to share
have me put onto this web page,