Less Than Ideal Conditions

Less Than Ideal Conditions
Bayou channels provide protection and fishing opportunity on even the windiest days.

The majority of fisherman will likely agree there are aspects of our sport we have to simply accept and learn to deal with. Weather is one of these. We would all wish for calm winds sunny skies every outing but in reality that rarely happens. It never fails that when studying the weather it always seems to just get worse. Of course, there is a point of severity where everyone should stop and decide to do something else besides get on the water. However, when conditions are somewhere in the middle and you decide to go, there are some things that can help make your day more successful.

As far as weather, I have no problem saying that if the forecast is calling for rain anglers should stay off the water. Typically with rain, you get high winds and that is not a good place to be, especially in a kayak. Along with that is lightning, something we should never take lightly. Second chances don’t come too often in that department.

The major factor that makes for a difficult day of kayak fishing is wind. This is something that we have to deal with in some amount on most trips and at times it can be very frustrating. When the winds tend to be high you need to find a place of refuge; some of my favorite places are bayous. These channels can provide a perfect hideout to break the wind and make paddling a little easier. On top of that, fishing in these areas can be great for all targeted species. This is also one of the times that I pay attention to the solunar and tide charts because I like to target the falling tides. Reason being that the water will be much clearer on average than any main body of water.

One thing that will make your day a whole lot easier is an anchor trolley. Rarely does the wind always work in your favor but with this you can change the pivot point of your Stake-Out Stick in relation to your anchor to keep your kayak pointing in the direction you prefer to be facing. The anchor trolley and Stake-Out Stick are must-haves on windy days.

Wind is the major factor but another really big one is sunlight. Overcast days can be tough, especially if you plan on sight-fishing. However, some of my most productive days have come on dark, overcast days. My personal theory of why this happens is because predator fish have the advantage when feeding in low light conditions. The longer the window of enhanced feeding opportunity the more they will feed.

One of my favorite lures for overcast days is the black She Dog. I tend to lean towards topwaters because you can cover a large amount of water and it is a very affective presentation. I like to believe that because of what little light there is, fish can look up to see their prey but their prey doesn’t have enough light to see what lurks beneath them; hence the predator fish’s advantage.

Windy and overcast can both be tough conditions. Where things get interesting is when you have both wind and overcast. However, this too can be overcome with a few other tips. If you follow the QR code at the end of my article, I will explain some of my lure presentations and what I like to do on days as such.

Here’s a few more tips that I did not cover in my video that I would like to pass along. First is slowing down and fishing an area thoroughly. Odds are that the water may be a little murky and it will take some time for a fish to find your lure. This is why I like to throw scented baits or lures with a lot of vibration. My usual go-to numbers in this situation are Berkley GULP! under a popping cork and Chatterbaits. Wakebaits can also be very productive in these conditions. Once anchored and staked out, always cover all the water in front of you before moving on – every little point, pocket, and patch of grass.

The weather will always be unpredictable, something we as anglers have to learn to deal with the best way we can. Sometimes you just have to go and that is completely reasonable, but please make good decisions. Remember, there is usually a fine line between what is acceptable weather and what is not. However, even when conditions are not ideal, proper planning can make your day on the water a success.

Lure Selections for Overcast Days