Outdoors: With correct light, night fishing can be cool and productive - East Valley Tribune: Sports

Outdoors: With correct light, night fishing can be cool and productive

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Posted: Wednesday, June 27, 2007 12:37 am | Updated: 8:00 pm, Fri Oct 7, 2011.

For decades, anglers have been told “early to bed, early to rise” is how to achieve summer fishing success. However, many anglers are discovering that night fishing with a fishing light isn’t just a way to beat the heat and busy waters. It is also a fun and productive way to catch more fish.

There is a scientific explanation as to what happens at night when a fishing light is floated on the surface or submerged. Light generates phytoplankton and zooplankton activity in the water and these tiny organisms are what baitfish feed on. Attract the bait and gamefish will follow.

Summertime is also a period when species like crappie, white bass and a variety of sunfish including largemouth bass have a tendency to school. The fact is, when gamefish and baitfish come together around a fishing light, the action can be fast and furious, and it doesn’t require an expert angler to catch them.

Fishing lights come in a variety of styles. Often the choices are simply a matter of angler preference, but sometimes picking the right light requires some thought on how and where it is going to be used. For example, if the destination is a walk-in spot, toting a 12-volt battery along for a power source doesn’t make much sense. A better alternative in this situation is a light powered by common flashlight batteries.

When fishing from a dock or boat though, lights powered by a boat battery are good choices.

I like the 12-volt Optronics Floating Fish-N-Lite, featuring a sealed beam in a waterproof Styrofoam housing, because it sits on the surface and casts a beam down into the water. It doesn’t attract bugs like above-water lights, but does attract the baitfish. I typically wait at least 15 to 30 minutes before dropping a bait into the water. If I don’t see any baitfish by then, I’ll move to a new spot.

For more information on fishing lights and tips on how, when and where to use them, visit www.optronicsinc.com.

So as daytime temperatures heat up this summer, don’t overlook the prospects of some quality night fishing with family and friends, and sleeping in the morning after.


The Arizona Game and Fish Department Kingman regional office will be conducting their annual Bighorn Sheep Workshop, offering wildlife enthusiasts an opportunity to learn about these sure-footed animals and view them in their natural habitat during two separate two-day workshops on July 27-28 and Aug. 3-4.

These popular workshops are open to the public, but space is limited to 40 people per session. To reserve a spot, a $20 refundable deposit per person is required. For more information, visit www.azgfd.gov or call (928) 692-7700, ext. 2301.

Fishing hot spot

Big Lake: Thanks to a prolonged spring in the White Mountains, especially the higher elevations, the water temperatures in most of the fisheries have stayed a little below the norm for this time of year, which means there is still a chance to find active trout, especially in the deeper waters of Big Lake. Try worms, meal worms, prepared baits, salmon eggs, spinners, spoons, small crankbaits, and flies. Boat anglers may want to try trolling worms behind cowbells. The Apache National Forest has not instituted fire restrictions yet. This is also an excellent time of year to visit the White Mountain Apache fisheries; be sure to get their special fishing permit. For a complete fishing report from the Arizona Game & Fish Department, visit www.evtrib.com.

CONTACT WRITER: P.O. Box 859, Mesa, AZ 85211 or


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