I’m always looking for new fishing spots in my area and one of the best ways to find them is by using Google Maps and Earth. It’s always a good idea to do the research before you go and in this post, I’m going to be showing you how to find good fishing spots using Google Maps.
I’m sure you’ve spent a good amount of time getting ready to go out and look for a new fishing spot only to get skunked. It happens all the time but all you have to do is a little bit of research to find 3-5 potential spots you can check out. It’ll help you spend more time fishing and less time looking.
We’re going to be talking about how to use Google Maps to find fishing spots, how to use Street View and Navionics to narrow things down, and then I’ll talk about a few key things you’ll want to look out for. Continue reading or watch the video below (skip to 4:22) for the full details.
Any time I’m looking for a new fishing spot to go to the first thing I’ll do is pull up Google Maps. It’s going to pull up an overhead view of the area and show you roads and water and you’ll even be able to see fallen trees and other areas that might be good to fish.
I always like to start with the standard map view because it’s easier to find water. I’ll then switch to satellite view so I can zoom in and actually see the area because there are a few key things you’ll want to look for.
The first thing you’ll want to make sure is that you can actually fish there. You can in most places but there are most likely a few spots that are privately owned. You’ll want to look for parking lots around the water, if there are any boat launches, and if there are roads next to the water. If that’s the case, you’re most likely good to go.
The next thing you’ll want to do is make sure it’s a decent fishing spot. There’s no way to know for sure but you can increase the odds of catching something by looking for a few things. The main thing you’ll want to look for is areas with cover. It could be fallen down trees, big rocks, weeds, etc. Anywhere the fish might be hiding, that’s where you want to go. It could also be around docks, boat ramps, bridges, dams, or pinch off points.
Here’s a spot where a narrow channel opens up to a lake. Fishing anywhere around that has always produced good results for me. Even fishing from the shore (or with waders) has worked really well too.
Here’s another spot I found on Google Maps that turned out to be really good. There’s a road leading to the lake so it’s definitely accessible and then there’s a little indent in the shore where I could hike to.
The final spot I’ll show you was awesome as well. It has a road that leads right up to where the river has a bend. It has a lot of shallow spots that you can see in the picture that breaks up the current and are perfect spots for fish to rest.
The final thing you want to make sure is that you can actually get there. I’ve found what I thought was going to be an awesome spot only to get there and have no way to get in. You’ll want to make sure there’s a road or trail, or bush that isn’t too thick. If you’re in a boat it’s not going to matter but this is more for the bank fisher. If there’s no road then you can switch back to the standard map view and it’ll show you all the trails in that area.
After I’ve looked at the area on Maps, the next thing I’ll do is use Street View to really dial in the area. You can use this feature on Maps or Earth but it’ll give you a detailed view from the street so you can see the area and how to get to your spot. You’ll be able to see parking spots, trailheads, and a bunch of other things that could save you time.
Using Street View I was able to find a parking spot right behind where I wanted to fish. Sometimes you can actually see people fishing on Street View but it’ll save you a bunch of time if you’re going to be fishing from the shore. Find the spots before you go and you’ll spend much more time fishing.
Another thing you can do is use the Navionics app to see what’s below the water. You can use it for shore fishing but it’ll come in handy the most when you’re actually out on the water. This will give you a better idea of where the fish might be in the water.
It’s basically going to show you the depth of the water and where the current is running. You’ll be able to see points in the water and where the drop off points are. These are normally good fishing spots.
You can see a few good fishing spots in the picture above. I know from experience that there are fish in those three spots and the common thing between them is a drop-off point. The arrow at the top has an island with pretty shallow water below it and then it quickly drops off. The middle arrow has another island with a point that quickly drops off. The arrow on the right is where land sticks out into the water and that has another steep drop-off.
If I was fishing this lake then those three spots are probably where I’d want to go. If I know that before I go then I’ll know exactly where I’m going and I’ll be able to spend more time fishing and hopefully, more time catching.
Until next time, happy fishing. If you want to catch more fish, use more hooks.
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