If you’re interested in the world of sports fishing, then you’ve probably done a lot of research on how to create the perfect fishing trip. You may have determined the best places and times to fish, found the best boats and gear to use, and practiced the best angling techniques… but have you thought about the tides?

If you’re planning on heading to the ocean and taking a deep sea fishing trip anytime soon, then you should know how the tides can affect your catch. In today’s post, our experienced fishing experts at LA Bluewater Charter Company will explain what the tides are, how they work, and how to use them to your advantage the next time you’ve got a red snapper on the hook! Read on to learn more, and contact us today to book a deep sea fishing excursion in Venice, LA!

What Are Tides?

The tides are created by the combined gravitational pull of the sun and the moon on Earth’s oceans. At high tide, when the moon and sun are in alignment and creating parallel gravitational pulls, the ocean’s waters are pulled farther up the shore. At low tide, when the sun and moon are creating perpendicular gravitational pulls, the ocean’s waterline falls lower down the shore.

The tidal bulge cycle takes around 24 hours, with coastal areas experiencing two high tides and two low tides each day. It takes approximately six hours to go from high tide to low tide and vice versa, with high tides falling 12 hours apart.

Every month, the tides are strongest during lunar perigee, when the moon’s orbit brings it closest to the Earth, and weakest during lunar apogee, when the moon is farthest away.

How Tides Affect Fishing

So what does this have to do with fishing?

Tides are very important to the marine ecosystem. As these currents sweep along, they collect small animals and plants and concentrate them in one place — typically in a whirlpool or eddy, or against physical structures like rocks or reefs. This concentration of readily available food attracts larger fish and other marine life, who will follow the currents to feed.

The savvy fisherman will also follow these currents to catch tuna, red snapper, and other larger ocean fish while they are feasting and ready to bite!

The Best Tides for Fishing

Typically, the best times to fish are when the tide is “running” — that is, when it’s on the move from high to low or vice versa. Once the water approaches the extremes of high or low tide, it slows down and stops moving, becoming what’s known as “slack,” and the fish are less likely to bite.

Many offshore species bite more enthusiastically when the tide is flowing freely, so whenever possible, you should time your fishing trips with a running tide. The run of the tide will be the strongest in shallow waters, estuaries, bays, harbors, and around islands or reefs where the geography “squeezes” the current through narrowed channels.

Tides and Deep Sea Fishing

Generally speaking, the farther you get from the shore, the less effect the tide will have on the water — but that doesn’t mean it has no effect on your deep water fishing plans. As the tide ebbs (goes out), many fish will move to deeper waters. If you can identify where to intercept them as they’re coming out to sea, you’ll have many more bites!

Additionally, if you can find where the current is concentrating the food sources, you’re sure to find big offshore species nearby. Bear in mind that this may not always be in an obvious place such as against a reef, since some currents will create eddies or whirlpools out in open water where smaller animals and plants will get caught.

Sometimes, especially in deep water, the flow of a running tide will make it impossible to use your lures and baits effectively. This means that in some special areas, slack water is actually better for deep sea fishing!

Book a Deep Sea Fishing Trip in Venice, LA Today!

Ready to put your knowledge to the test? Book a deep sea fishing trip with LA Bluewater Charter Company today! Our fishing charters operate out of Venice, LA, and we offer fishing adventures for anglers of all ages and skill ranges. From our single-day inshore trips to multi-day off-shore excursions, you’re sure to find the right guided fishing trip for you.

Our fishing guides have years of local experience, and we can take you straight to where the fish are flowing. If you want to catch a tuna, go fishing for red snapper or swordfish, or more, there’s no better team to call than LA Bluewater Charter Company! Browse our site to learn more about our off-shore fishing charters and contact us now to schedule your Gulf adventure this summer!