Tactical Angler: Fishing Tactics

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

June 19, 2020
If your regular method of fishing for speckled trout is not working one day, don’t be afraid to reevaluate your strategy and step outside the comfort zone. On days when it’s tough to generate a bite…
June 15, 2020
When you hear about fly fishing, most people automatically think of rainbow trout. Visions of Norman Maclean and Izaak Walton (though the latter didn't actually fly fish) wading in a scenic stream or…
June 1, 2020
Lying at the bottom of the ocean in 600 to 800 feet of water, golden tilefish are a worthy target for any offshore angler. But the standard-issue method of dragging a “meat rig” with multiple baited…
April 24, 2020
You want to tip the scales of encountering marlin, tuna, mahi-mahi, and other pelagics in your favor, the next time you go offshore trolling? Now’s the time to begin prepping your gear, your boat,…
April 14, 2020
You want to catch white perch galore this spring and summer? Casting and retrieving a small spinnerbait-style lure is one way to make it happen, and a couple of FishTalk supporters make ideal…
April 8, 2020
The arrival of April means flounder fishing will kick in up and down the coastal bays and inlets, including in well-known flounder hotspots like Wachapreague, VA, and during the early season you’ll…
February 24, 2020
Anyone who regularly enjoys Chesapeake Bay Fishing has seen a fly angler or two casting about for striped bass, Spanish mackerel, and countless other species. Fly fishing on the Bay is a fun way to…
February 22, 2020
Late winter and early spring is a great time to catch torpedo-shaped pre-spawn chain pickerel, which are on a mission to fatten up as the waters begin to warm. You can fish for ‘em many ways, but one…
February 12, 2020
Will you get to go ice fishing on a tidal creek or river this winter? Considering how warm it's been recently, it doesn't seem likely. Even during average years since the turn of the century, most of…
February 10, 2020
Step aboard a boat full of tautog sharpies, drop your rig to bottom, and start bouncing the weight up and down. Know what happens next? Everyone aboard will point at you and laugh. What gives? Unlike…
January 15, 2020
Hatchery-raised rainbows may not be as wary as wild trout, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re easy to catch all the time, either. Sure, there are days when you’ll fill your stringer in minutes…
January 11, 2020
If we get a decent Mid-Atlantic ice fishing season this year, many anglers will employ tip-ups. But these much-maligned devices are anything but set-it-and-forget-it pieces of equipment. In fact, how…
December 18, 2019
With only a very narrow window of 48-hours of safe ice fishing conditions last winter, I still somehow managed to dodge this snow event and that cold spell to put a pretty good hurtin’ on bass,…
December 4, 2019
Popping corks have been around for ages, and are used extensively along the Gulf Coast and Florida for species like red drum and speckled trout. But those of us who’ve tried importing popping cork…
November 28, 2019
Jigging for summer stripers is one thing, but jigging them up in the cold is a different gig. As water temps in the mainstem Chesapeake Bay drop down in to the 40s those stripers start hugging the…
November 21, 2019
Okay, I admit it: up until this past winter had I stopped targeting chain pickerel in specific, for many, many years. They aren’t an ideal food-fish, while other winter species like yellow perch and…
October 30, 2019
Yes, water temps are falling, but no, that doesn’t mean your snakehead adventures are over for the season – you just need to alter the tactics a bit. As things cool off the standard topwater bite on…
October 27, 2019
As the water chills out this month, LTT (light tackle trolling) is a tactic many anglers in search of schoolie stripers should consider. Especially when you aren’t 100-percent sure where the fish are…