Tactical Angler: Fishing Tactics

Fishing tactics and techniques used on the Chesapeake Bay, Atlantic Ocean, and surrounding freshwater fishing areas are covered in depth.

February 21, 2024
Greetings FishTalkers, and welcome to our new section Ask an Expert where we kick things off by talking with Captain Tom Weaver, of Fish With Weaver, a renowned light tackle and fly fishing guide out…
December 13, 2023
It’s 45 degrees, you see striped bass down deep on the meter, and as you stand there shivering you’re wondering why the heck you can’t get a bite when the day before rockfish were thrashing on the…
December 7, 2023
No matter where you live in Chesapeake Country there are sure to be plenty of bridges nearby, and hopping from one to the next is a great way to find a solid bite — especially during the winter…
November 13, 2023
In the Chesapeake’s waters, black sea bass can be both a blessing and a curse. We love to see ‘em, but most of the time they’re bait-stealing juvenile delinquents, pecking away at your offerings…
October 29, 2023
Spoonin’ Up the Stripers When the water temps drop this month, at some point the stripers will move deep. And in-between flurries of bird action there will almost certainly come a time when you spot…
October 19, 2023
What’s worse than waking up to discover a 20-knot breeze when you’re bound and determined to try some Chesapeake Bay fishing? Not having a backup plan. Push your luck and head for open waters on a…
October 4, 2023
You say you enjoy fishing in tournaments (see the local upcoming events at our Chesapeake Bay Fishing Calendar), and you want to win more of ‘em? While there’s always an element of luck involved in…
September 21, 2023
It’s the most common mistake I see people make aboard my boat: when told the rockfish are hugging bottom, they cast out and then retrieve without knowing exactly where in the water column that jig is…
September 9, 2023
When it comes to fighting fish, gear size is relative. Sure, you can feel 10-inch white perch tug against a 20-pound spinning rod as you crank it up, but crank it up is about all you’ll do. Engage in…
September 7, 2023
We at FishTalk love getting a bit scientificalish now and again (see articles like Fishing Line Stretch Test: Stretching the Truth, and Fishing Hook Test: Fowl Play), especially when it uncovers some…
August 24, 2023
It’s the most common mistake I see people make aboard my boat: when told the fish are hugging bottom, they cast out and then retrieve without knowing exactly where in the water column their jig is.…
August 13, 2023
Flukes are a great choice for fooling predators into pouncing, especially when you need a weedless option that sinks slowly and can be used in shallow water and/or thick cover. And yes, largemouth…
July 29, 2023
Maybe your idea of a good time fishing means hauling up one crappie after the next, or maybe you sit at the opposite end of the angling spectrum and tugging on tuna is more your style. Whatever…
July 11, 2023
Topwater is an exciting way to fish, but you can choose the most tempting plug, cast it with pinpoint accuracy, and bring it back with the picture-perfect walk-the-dog retrieve, and if it never…
June 24, 2023
Carp love corn, and many anglers chum with it to get the fish into a feeding mood. Often, however, it’s easy to out-cast the distance you can fling your corn-chum by a longshot. If that’s a scenario…
June 22, 2023
The classic bait and switch is a widely known tactic for getting marlin to eat a hook, but traditionally, it’s performed with a hookless teaser and a hook-bait. In reality, most of the time…
May 14, 2023
Late spring can be a tough time for jiggers, as many of the Chesapeake's striped bass are in small, highly mobile pods that haven’t yet joined up to form big schools. They’re often in open water,…
May 12, 2023
People were catching flounder long before jigging for them came into vogue, and old -school tactics still work like a charm on them in this day and age. Whether you enjoy fishing with bait or you…