July and August are great months to catch bass, perch, bream and lots of catfish. To help make your next trip both fun and more productive, consider the following summer fishing tips:
The best time to fish is between 10 p.m. and 10 a.m., when air and water are cooler.
When night fishing, be sure the boat's running lights are working properly. Have a supply of fresh batteries on board to assure that all lights, electronics and motors remain operable throughout the trip.
If night fishing is not your thing, leave the dock by dawn and cast lures or pull live baits near docks, brush and riprap, where bass will be feeding.
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Lighted boat docks to deep water are great places to cast after dark for bass, stripers and perch. Anglers with boats can hang a glow light just above the surface or submerge it when anchored or slowly drifting. Lights attract baitfish, which in turn lure predator fish, including summer stripers. Bridge pilings are great places to fish at night for crappie. These tasty "tuggers" are best taken on small minnows and tiny jigs.
It is a challenge to keep bait alive when temperatures hit 90 degrees. Keep worms in an ice chest when you're not using them, and add ice to the minnow bucket when the water warms or baits begin to swim near the surface. Crickets will live longer and stay more active if kept in the shade.
Dead minnows, shad and herring make excellent chum when cut into pieces, or great cut baits when filleted into strips for cats, white perch and stripers.
Brightly colored artificial lures work best on sunny days. Dark colors, including black, are best to use after dark.
When in doubt, fish deep rather than shallower during the heat of the day.
Use plenty of sunscreen and stay hydrated by drinking lots of fluids.
When landing a fish in the dark, attach a flashlight to the handle of your landing net so the light will shine into the water.