BlogOctober 2016

5 Ways To Determine Best Fishing Days

5 Ways To Determine Best Fishing Days

By Debbie Hanson

Oct 17, 2016

Want to know when the best fishing day will be? Read these tips to learn how the moon, tides, weather can play a part in your level of fishing success!

Have some flexibility in your schedule? Want to find out when your best chance will be at landing a brag-worthy catch? Good news! There are few ways you can research the best fishing days for upcoming months. From tide changes to simply spending time with friends and family on the water, check out these tips for selecting the best days to fish.

Tides for Fishing

If you are trying to determine the best days to go saltwater fishing, be sure to check a tide chart to find out when the tide will be rising or falling where you plan to fish. Baitfish and other game fish prey are more active on a rising or falling tide. This means that game fish will be feeding more heavily during these periods.

Solunar Tables

Solunar tables can be used to determine the best days of the month and times of the day for catching fish. The gravitational pull of the moon affects tidal movement, while the sunrise and sunset times can help anglers predict when the fish are going to bite. Many anglers feel that fish are most active on a full moon or new moon, and that activity is at a low on a quarter moon or a three quarter moon.

Weather Reports

Weather, and barometric pressure in particular, can have a major impact on fishing activity. Fish behavior can change significantly before and after cold or warm fronts. Before a front, fish often increase feeding activity due to periods of lower barometric pressure. Since fish are sensitive to changes in pressure, they increase feeding activity right before a front moves in -- this is an opportunity for some of the best fishing days. Also, don’t forget that weather reports can change frequently, so always check the weather before you make plans to go fishing. Always change your fishing plans to another day, and stay inside if the weather report calls for storms or other unsafe fishing conditions.


You should also use the seasons of year to help you determine the best fishing days. Spring is often considered by many Florida anglers to be prime time for targeting largemouth bass in Florida, just as one example. Summer can be a great season for fishing as well, but you may want to avoid the hottest periods of the day. Focus on fishing at dawn and dusk during the summer months when water temperatures aren't quite as high. When summer transitions into fall, this be another great time of year to fish provided that the weather is consistent.

If you want to go ice fishing for panfish or walleye in the northern states, the coldest winter months will be the safest and most productive. Focus your ice fishing efforts at dusk or dawn when targeting walleye through the ice since they have light sensitive eyes and are most active during those time periods. However, if it's panfish you're after, species like crappie will often school up and feed heavily during periods of diminished light as well. Pay special attention to the edges of weedbeds, weedlines, and points during the winter.

Friends and Family

Sometimes the best fishing days are quite simply those days when you can get friends and family together to enjoy an experience on the water. Fishing is often about so much more than just catching. Consider all of the above, but don't forget that time spent relaxing out in the fresh air with good company is often what the very best fishing memories are made of. 

Since you now know more about how to determine the best fishing days of the month, don't forget to buy your fishing license online so that you are prepared when the conditions are right. Tight lines!
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.