First go to the-Mart. You know the one. Go to the sporting goods department and get a fishing license either freshwater or saltwater which ever you prefer. Then just walk around the fishing department for about an hour, and gather what you’ll need. For freshwater fishing you need light weight lines, rods, reels, and sinkers. Saltwater fishing calls for heavier versions of the same stuff. Some commonly caught fresh water fish are sunfish, brim, crappie, catfish, and trout.
Some saltwater fish you might catch on the east coast bays and along the Atlantic coast are Black Drum, Bluefish, Cobia, Croaker, Flounder, Trout, Jack Cravelle, King Mackerel, Mullet, Pompano, Puppy Drum, Spanish Mackerel, Speckled Trout, Spot, and Striper. Whew, you can see there’s a lot more stuff you can catch saltwater fishing. I am admittedly biased. Though I’ve bass fished for many years, I’m not up to trying to outsmart the fish. I’d rather dump some chum (a ground fish mixture) off the side of a charter boat, and drop a baited hook in the mix, and wait a few minutes for a tug. A tug so strong you’ll think it’s trying to pull you in. It’ll startle you at first but it probably won’t pull you in. M little wife who is 5’1″ 125 lbs. Once on a Gulf Stream trip, she managed an amberjack in the 20 to 25 lb range, and held her own. Not that she’s a barometer for you, but if a petite little woman has the heart to set the hook and reel one in, I know you can.
I’ve caught some pretty good sized largemouth bass, but nothing to rival what a 10 lb. blue, or a 25 lb. amberjack has to offer in a battle. When I compare freshwater to saltwater fishing they don’t compare. Saltwater is much more of a challenge for me. I’ve had some pretty good battles with some blues off Ocean City MD, red snapper off Morehead NC, Atlantic Gulf Stream amberjack, and a Chesapeake Bay striper or two, oh yeah, I can’t leave out the speckled trout in the Gulf of Mexico, that was a lot of fun. Most every saltwater species mentioned will bite on squid. Squid is like a universal bait. You can pick up a box of squid at a Mart too, particularly if it’s near the ocean.
Another thing about saltwater fishing, bottom fishing in particular is, you might find a certain jigging, bouncing your bait off the bottom, or adding something with a little color will work better. I think there’s really no rhyme or reason. I’ve heard people say this, and Captains say that, but if a fish finds your bait, rig, or the way you jiggle your bait in the water appealing, they’re going to bite.
Have you heard the one about the little girl while fishing with her dad on a charter, ran out of bait and started catching fish on tomato slices from her sandwich. I don’t doubt it. I’ve fished from the front of the boat, both sides, and the back, and caught fish all over the boat. I’ve fished off the coast of Ocean City, MD and caught Black Sea Bass one after another after another then had a fellow fisherman notice my consistent catch and lowered his line in the same spot and didn’t catch a thing, but the water was so rough that day, fishing was really the last thing on his mind if you know what I mean.