Beach fishing is form of shore fishing, done from various beaches. These areas are accessed easily all year long and can have various bottom terrains. Fishing among swimmers is not recommended, except for little kids trying/learning to catch really small fish in the shallows. But, off season fishing using long rods (with or without RC boats) can be very interesting with great catches.
When someone mention 'beach fishing', people usually think of fishing from sand beaches. This is mostly correct, but various shore types can be considered as 'beach' - anyway, if you are on holidays during summer, feel free to take a dive and check bottom type, terrain configuration and similar details. Also, look out for fish species around you. This 'scouting mission' is very important, since in many countries beach/shore fishing requires no license or it can be obtained for relatively small fee.
During summer, due to crowd on the beaches, it is very hard and often not correct to fish during the day (not to mention that plenty of swimmers scare numerous fish species). But, early in the morning or late at the evening, fish come from the deep to shallows to feed and fishing at that time can lead to great catches.
You don't like to fish early in the morning or late at the evening? Rent a small boat and row few hundred meters off the beach and enjoy your fishing. Also, visiting such beaches in the off season with, at least, basic fishing tackle can drive you to cast your bait and who knows what may be lurking out there ...
Often, all one needs is slice of bread thrown 10-20 meters off the shore - mullets will come quickly, bread slice will fall apart and sink down attracting numerous small and often not so small fish - great moment for using some smaller universal rod with ordinary 10-12kg main line and a small float.
Beach Fishing Rods, Reels, Lines
Size, strength and 'action' of beach rods differ greatly - it is not the same if you are going to fish some pan size fishes or you are going for predatory species that are hunting such pan size fishes. One has similar issues when choosing proper reels and lines - rule of thumb - if uncertain, take some cheap universal rod and reel (often sold as combo), some 100m 10-15kg general line and you are good to go. If something bigger is hooked, be careful and be patient - fish will get tired before you, hopefully! :) If you suspect that larger game fish can be present and you are fishing from the sand beach and need to cast far away, than some longer and stronger rod is needed with proper action for distant casting. In such cases, investing in good and reliable fishing tackle is wise decision.
Beach Fishing Rigs
Beach fishing rigs depend on bottom profile and type of terrain. On rocky terrain, one can lose plenty of sinkers and hooks - use floats. Also, if you are after mullets and similarly feeding fish, use of floats is recommended. On sandy and similar bottoms, one can use rigs with sinkers and hooks in various combinations, depending on game fish, currents, winds etc.
RC Boats can be used for casting or even fishing - be careful about legal issues.
Trolling from the beaches with live bait (small mullets, prawns etc) is common practice in many areas - using RC boats for distant 'casting' (sometimes more than 200m away!) makes this type of fishing more and more popular.
Beach Fishing Lures and Baits
Lures are used for trolling, while various baits for fishing on or near the surface or on or just over the bottom. As said before, live bait is good for trolling from the beaches with low speed, but live baits can be used (and they are recommended) for other forms of fishing. Live prawns, crabs, worms, small mullets and other small fishes are great bait for larger game fish. Ordinary bread, mixed with some cheese (or not) can be used for many species and often size of hooked mullets can surprise even the most experienced anglers.
Meat from various seashells is great bait for many game fish, but often to soft and tender - salt it few days before fishing trip and it will be much tougher (not to mention the smell, but ...).
Some fish species feed on whole seashells - they have very strong mouth and can crush shells with ease and eat the meat. For such species, single hook on the long line is all that you need - just gently open the shell and insert the hook inside of the shell and let seashell close the shell. Throw the rig into the water and wait - or even better, fish for other species using, for example, rod and float and wait for strike on the seashell ...
Beach Fishing Tips and Tricks
Rule number one - always, but really always, leave the beach clean. Don't leave anything behind you - cans of beer, bottles of water, not to mention hooks, lines, sinkers etc. They are all ugly to see and pollute already endangered environment.
Other rules are general rules that apply when fishing:
- be safe, watch out for yourself and the others
- return small fish into the water; you can hardly have any use of it, but next time, who knows, maybe you will catch exactly that fish, just little bit bigger :)
- bring some food and drinks - if fish is not biting, you can :)