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Catching Fish Behind You In The Surf

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Posted (edited)

Not casting in the opposite direction towards shore while wading but positioning yourself to take advantage of spots and the conditions that allow you to do so from the surf. Not swimming out to rocks or fishing jetties that naturally put you past the fish in many instances. Over the years I've caught quite a few doing so and always wondered if this was a viable practice for anybody else since I've never seen it mentioned anywhere. In my opinion there seemed to be a couple of common denominators For me it was a shallow water shoal with hard or soft structure coupled with a predominate water flow and adjacent bowl of deeper water that made a spot a good candidate to try when conditions were optimal to .do so. I've sure many guys have gotten hit just as they were lifting their lure out of the water but how many are not caught because the bass turns away instead at that moment? Obviously there's no way to know but in my opinion there's probably ten that turn away for every one that grabs the plug before it is lifted out of the water. That's why I believe you can catch some of those fish that would have turned away at the last second by extending your retrieve to behind you which changes everything in the direction of the plug swim and may have caught me a few fish I otherwise wouldn't have caught. Ever watch Musky guys on a boat? I've watched them on TV "figure eight" their retrieve at boatside for that exact reason of triggering that fish to commit at the last second with an "impulse hit" instead of just lifting their lure which will get hit at the last second at a much lesser ratio.

Edited by SC

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Very difficult to extend the retrieve especially when your at the end of it? Not sure I’m following you correct. You let it float bye and start a new retrieve?

Best I can come up with is a muscle flat I used to fish. I would wade out, water moving left to right. Many times rather than casting at 10 or 2 o’clock I would turn to my left or right and cast horizontally to the shore. Caught fish in both directions and many times I would get bumps, finish my retrieve and turn around and flip my bucktail and catch.

Is this kinda of what your asking?

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Behind your back? 
 

So, you’re standing in the surf, passing a bucktail or plug around behind your body like the figure 8 technique? Without moving your feet?

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An eternity back, one of the kids and I were beachcombing east of 6 at Jones, high noon during the mullet run. Few guys fishing, none catching. 
The ones that weren’t in the wash were casting waaay too far.

The last guy east, before heading back, was in up to his waist.

My daughter pointed out a freight train of schoolies behind the guy, pushing mullet, clear as day. :laugh: 
We waved and pointed down when he turned his back to switch out. He waved back. :why:

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@SC they’re not following your OP basis. I believe he said he’s not referring to casting back towards the beach. Just sayin

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Yes I have caught various fish doing the wide sweeping turnaround and musky figure 8 technique from the surf / from the bank. Normally don't bother but its a situational thing if I am able to sight fish. 

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still have no idea what we're talking about

 

do you mean to say:

1 you wade out into the water

2 you cast out like usual and retrieve

3 when it's close to you, you don't lift out of water and cast again but rather pivot and let the lure swim behind where are standing?

 

on an unrelated tangent, I have caught fish fly fishing before where my back cast was sloppy and momentarily hit the water and a fish hit it the moment it did

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6 hours ago, adam42 said:

still have no idea what we're talking about

 

do you mean to say:

1 you wade out into the water

2 you cast out like usual and retrieve

3 when it's close to you, you don't lift out of water and cast again but rather pivot and let the lure swim behind where are standing?

 

on an unrelated tangent, I have caught fish fly fishing before where my back cast was sloppy and momentarily hit the water and a fish hit it the moment it did

Yes that's exactly what I'm talking about. The reason I'm asking is because I've often noticed many guys start cranking in faster as soon as they are past what they consider the strike zone to make another cast. I've done it too, often as soon as you speed up the retrieve to do so you'd occasionally get a hit which to me was a signal that I should try to maximize any opportunity to get a fish to commit by extending, not shortening the retrieve and presenting the lure differently than from what has NOT induced a strike up to that point. By having the lure change direction, for example in the backsweep of the lure the profile changes and so does the action which I believe sometimes causes the fish to commit thru impulse. Notice when many fish do hit your plugs. Darter being a prime example. I've caught most of my darter-caught fish at the same part of the retrieve as the "twitch" causes the lure to change directions on two planes simultaneously (side to side and shallower to deeper)

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Every time I fish I resist the urge to "spin up fast" the final few feet of my retrieve so as to make another cast . There is always that feeling that the fish are way out and a long cast is needed to catch them. I cannot tell you how many fish, and big ones at that, I have caught a rods length in front of me, Most of those hits are startling and in very shallow water in the dark of the night.  Therefore , I always reel whatever I am casting right up in front of me as far as I can before I make another cast. 

Edited by VanStaalSteve

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@SC thanks for the great and well thought out tip!!
 

I understand- it’s basically an extension of the figure-8 that musky guys would do boat side in the water after a retrieve. I have seen it on YouTube as well while watching musky videos. I also remember a striper guy on a YouTube video talking about it and demonstrating with a yellow Danny or pikie. 
 

i havnt thought of incorporating it into shore fishing- but using your rod to bring the plug far along side you to behind and kind of a u-turn or figure 8 at that point is a great idea! Plus the plug is turning right toward the fish too… 

 

After watching some underwater footage by Skinner, where he has a video cam attached to his line- I often wonder while fishing how many fish follow your plug but do not strike. In some of his videos it’s amazing how many fish show interest but not commitment… I was even thinking about that this morning while I was out… 

 

so thanks again, I can think

of one spot right now where I should have been doing this!! 

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On 9/24/2022 at 11:08 PM, ReelSharp said:

I’ve 100 percent casted back towards the beach if the coastline is curved in such a way to be able to do so.  

Agree, many times when your waist deep out 30 or 40 feet from shore you can and should cast back to the beach, plenty of water to float fish feeding in the trough and shallows. Or standing on a sandbar 50-75 yards from shore, fish get trapped inside and you can catch them by casting into the pool that is holding them.

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