Managing The Madness: Offshore Fishing Boils

Offshore boats can allow fishermen to catch more fish than they might have ever dreamed about. One of the most exciting parts of an offshore fishing trip is getting to fish in a boil. Here are a few tips to help you catch more fish when a boil erupts off the bow of an offshore boat:

Tip # 1: Listen and See

It's instinctual; when you see fish boil you'll want to cast into them. There isn't much you can do to control this impulse. Many skippers and deckhands label the mentality that results from this impulse as "boil fever".

This feverish condition can make even the most experience anglers commit amateurish mistakes. The best way to cool this fever and avoid making these mistakes is to prepare for boils before they happen.

This planning starts with knowing the cues you're likely to see and hear when a boil erupts. The most common visual cue you'll see when a boil erupts are birds. If you notice birds dive-bombing the water in mass, you'll know a boil is happening. Even before you're able to see a boil, however, you'll probably be able to hear it. If you hear the sound of flat concussions at arrhythmic rate, you're likely hearing the sound of fish exploding in and out of the water.

Once you hear or see these cues, you should position yourself on the boat as close to the boil as possible.

Tip # 2: Casting and Ripping

Most boils are brief. Thus, you need to make the most of every casting opportunity you have. The thing to remember when casting into a boil is to aim over the boil. When fish are feeding in a boil, they are likely to bite almost anything that lands in midst of the boil. If your lure doesn't make it to the boil though, you aren't likely to hook up. By aiming over the boil you can reel into it.

When you reel your lure into a boil, it's important to remember that fish are feeding at or near the surface. To make sure that your lure is near the surface when it passes through the boil, you will want to reel rapidly. By reeling quickly, your lure is likely to stay near the surface. This reeling technique is often referred to as "ripping".

These two tips can help you avoid the most common offshore boil fishing mistakes.