Fishing
  • Freshwater Fishing Questions and Answers


    Here are some basic questions and answers that will help you get out on the water and start catching fish.

    Where can I go freshwater fishing?

    Lakes, ponds, rivers, streams – they’re all great places to find fish. Bays and estuaries contain a mixture of fresh water and salt water, so they’ll have a mix of freshwater and saltwater fish. To learn more, check out our Where to Fish page.

    Is there certain basic freshwater fishing gear that I need?

    The basics include a rod, reel, line, hook, and bait or lure that are matched to the type of fish you’re after. Generally, spin-casting equipment is easier for beginners than bait-casting equipment. You’ll also want a tackle box with various hooks, baits, lures and other tackle. For more information, check out our Gear page.

    How do I know what kind of fishing line to use?

    The right line to use depends on what kind of fish you’re after and where you’re fishing. Fishing line is referred to by “pound-test” – the strength of the line. A number of factors go into determining the right line and pound-test to use. Check out our Other Tacklepage to learn more.

    How can I learn to cast?

    The best way to learn is to just do it. You can also practice away from the water – in a large, open area, away from people or pets. Start by checking out the basics on our Fishing Techniquespage.

    What’s the difference between a bobber and a float?

    They’re basically the same thing. A bobber is a round floating device used to keep your bait at the depth you want and to alert you when a fish is biting. Floats are shaped differently and more sensitive than round bobbers. For more, check out our Other Tacklepage.

    What is a rig?

    A fishing rig is the way you tie together your bait or lure, hook and other tackle to your fishing line in order to attract fish. Rigs are used for specific types of fishing. Check out our Rigspage to learn more.

    What’s the difference between natural fishing bait and fishing lures?

    Natural fishing bait includes attractants like minnows, cut bait, leeches, mealworms and insects – real, natural stuff that fish like to eat. If your bait isn’t natural, it’s a lure, which is a manufactured replica of natural bait or material designed to look and move like things that fish like to eat. For more information, check out our Bait & Lures sectionor our Species Explorerfor more on baits and lures for specific fish.

    Here are some basic questions and answers that will help you get out on the water and start catching fish.

    Where can I go freshwater fishing?

    Lakes, ponds, rivers, streams – they’re all great places to find fish. Bays and estuaries contain a mixture of fresh water and salt water, so they’ll have a mix of freshwater and saltwater fish. To learn more, check out our Where to Fish page.

    Is there certain basic freshwater fishing gear that I need?

    The basics include a rod, reel, line, hook, and bait or lure that are matched to the type of fish you’re after. Generally, spin-casting equipment is easier for beginners than bait-casting equipment. You’ll also want a tackle box with various hooks, baits, lures and other tackle. For more information, check out our Gear page.

    How do I know what kind of fishing line to use?

    The right line to use depends on what kind of fish you’re after and where you’re fishing. Fishing line is referred to by “pound-test” – the strength of the line. A number of factors go into determining the right line and pound-test to use. Check out our Other Tacklepage to learn more.

    How can I learn to cast?

    The best way to learn is to just do it. You can also practice away from the water – in a large, open area, away from people or pets. Start by checking out the basics on our Fishing Techniquespage.

    What’s the difference between a bobber and a float?

    They’re basically the same thing. A bobber is a round floating device used to keep your bait at the depth you want and to alert you when a fish is biting. Floats are shaped differently and more sensitive than round bobbers. For more, check out our Other Tacklepage.

    What is a rig?

    A fishing rig is the way you tie together your bait or lure, hook and other tackle to your fishing line in order to attract fish. Rigs are used for specific types of fishing. Check out our Rigspage to learn more.

    What’s the difference between natural fishing bait and fishing lures?

    Natural fishing bait includes attractants like minnows, cut bait, leeches, mealworms and insects – real, natural stuff that fish like to eat. If your bait isn’t natural, it’s a lure, which is a manufactured replica of natural bait or material designed to look and move like things that fish like to eat. For more information, check out our Bait & Lures sectionor our Species Explorerfor more on baits and lures for specific fish.