Saltwater surf fishing can be very frustrating. Even the best surf fisherman will have days without a bite. You could be armed with the best equipment and bait, but there will be days where you will go home with nothing. Here are three tips to reduce days without a bite to a minimum.
#1 Fishing at the right time of day is extremely important. The best time for any kind of saltwater surf fishing is around high tide. The general rule of thumb is two hours before and after high tide. Check your local tide chart and find out what time of day high tide falls. Dawn and dusk high tides are the best, and you will stand a much better chance of catching fish than any other time of day.
#2 Check the beach out at low tide. Nothing is constant in saltwater surf fishing, inshore water current patterns change and so will the shape of the beach. Sand banks will constantly shift, so make a note of where they are. Getting your bait into the hollows either side of these sand banks will increase your chances of bites as they are a natural place for fish to forage for food. You will be able to pinpoint the sand banks at high tide as this is where the waves will break most frequently.
#3 Wherever possible use fresh locally caught bait, preferably from the beach you intend to fish. Only use frozen bait as a last resort. If you are fishing lures, use something that is a close match to the natural food of the fish you are after, or ask your local tackle shop which lures are working the best. It is well worth the time spent gathering your bait, and will definitely improve your chances of hooking a fish.