When you know the weather, you know what the fish are doing. Respected guide and tournament angler Brian Bashore knows there are several weather-focused apps but depends on just one: ScoutLook Fishing.
I can’t think of a bigger factor that affects your fishing, for better or worse, than the weather. From cold fronts and heat waves, to a dropping barometer or blue-bird skies, all these and many more can play a major role in the outcome of your day on the water. Unfortunately there isn’t much we can do about Mother Nature and her grand plan, so the best we can do is be prepared for whatever circumstances we may encounter. Which is why I continue to be a huge fan of the “5 Ps”: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performances. This catchy, often-used phrase couldn’t be more true when it comes to fishing, or any outdoor adventure you may embark upon.
But, how do you plan for the weather? That is a good question. We all know the weatherman is right only half of the time, and if you ask 10 people you will probably get five different answers on the forecast. While there are several weather-related apps available to us all on our smartphones, I depend solely on the dependably accurate forecasts found in my Scoutlook Fishing app. If you spend a lot of time on the water like I do, your smartphone is one very critical piece of equipment, and the ScoutLook Fishing app has proven to me, time and again, to offer the most-accurate day-to-day and hour-by-hour weather forecasts, with constant, ultra-valuable updates.
SCOUTLOOK OFFERS ‘SPOT-ON’ WEATHER
Using my ScoutLook Fishing app I am able to drop my GPS pin in the general vicinity of where I will be fishing, and get the weather for that specific location within a 5-mile radius. In contrast, most weather forecasts are based on the “local” (or nearest airport’s readings), and many times that location is far from your current location. I can count on two hands how many times my clients have asked to re-schedule a guided trip, stemming from a recent forecast they had watched, forcing me to reassure them and/or otherwise tell them not to worry, that the weather would be “fine where we are going.” And with all sincerity, more than 90 percent of the time, things have worked out as planned. That’s a pretty good prediction rate that has kept my clients and me fishing when most folks missed out.
There are, of course, seasonal patterns that fish follow that can help us all target particular areas of a lake or river system, based on a certain time of year. However, things like weather, current, and historic fishing logs should hold the most-important clues to your planning. If I know I’m going to be fishing a particular body of water on a Friday I watch the weather all week for that area, taking note of the wind direction the previous two days before I arrive, as well as for the day I’ll be fishing. Walleyes and many other fish are very “wind driven” for several reasons, so knowing the wind direction is critical to how I will approach that body of water on that given day.
REGULAR SCOUTLOOK UPDATES MEAN MORE OPPORTUNITY
The Scoutlook Fishing app gives me hour-by-hour wind speeds and directions, so I can plan accordingly for when, where and how I will present my baits to the fish. Not only does the app give me hourly updates on wind, but the local barometer reading as well. When I see the barometer dropping, many times I will switch presentations, say, from live bait to trolling cranks a little higher up in the water column, to target those fish that are beginning to feel less pressure.
“Pre-planning,” such as watching previous weather and the forecasted weather, will help you identify any storms that may have passed or are headed your way, as well as tip you off to drastic weather changes such as a cold front.
MAKE THE MOST OF POST-LIGHTNING FORAYS & FALL COLD FRONTS
Thunderstorms and cold fronts are among the largest factors that can make your next fishing trip a bust. However, if you are prepared for these situations, you can still put a nice bag of fish in the boat by making some adjustments. For example, I have found, from many years spent on the water, that lightning tends to push the fish deep, and they may be a little more lethargic for the first few hours in the morning. So I will slow down my approach and target areas of deep water that are adjacent to where I would fish if the storm hadn’t happened. I use the same approach for cold fronts, with an exception in late fall. I have found during late fall that a cold front can actually trigger the bite to pick up a bit, as the fish are preparing for winter, and have their feed bags on! In this situation I will ensure that I’m hitting the water on those cold-front days, which, again, is somewhat of a departure from what other anglers might be doing, allowing me to capitalize on a “secret” bite.
Stable weather may very well be the biggest factor of all to really get the fish going. I like to see two, if not three, days of stable weather to “turn on” a bite that has been tough. Two-three days of stability may not seem like much, but this pattern can be harder to come by than you might think. Stable weather allows the fish to move into a “seasonal” pattern, while stabilizing the water temp and also the movement of baitfish and vegetation growth. All these together spell more-aggressive fish.
DETAILS MATTER; FIND THEM IN SCOUTLOOK FISHING
Paying close attention to details is what helps many average fishermen become great anglers. Noticing the little difference in wind direction and barometric pressure, along with some smart pre-planning, can make your fishing experience much better than just showing up and “winging it.” Having a handy weather app in the palm of your hand just makes accessing this info and knowledge that much easier. If you’re not already a user, I urge you to download the free ScoutLook Fishing app to your iPhone or Android, and start planning for your next outdoor adventure. I know you will be amazed at the accuracy of the weather forecasts, and it won’t be long before you’ll be singing its praises when it helps you boat more fish.