Are you looking for a new hobby? Striper fishing is one of the most popular sports in America. It’s easy to learn, people of all ages can enjoy fun to do.
You don’t need any experience or expensive equipment to get started either!
All you need are some basic supplies and your own two hands.
Here are 19 things that every beginner should know about striper fishing before they go out on their first trip.
If you want to have an amazing time outdoors with friends and family while catching dinner, then this guide will help you get started on your journey today!
Be patient because it takes practice! Read more about these ten tips so that you can become a pro angler overnight!
The 19 Most important things every striped bass angler should know
If you are new to striped bass fishing, or if you have been at it for a while but want to improve your catch rate, this guide will help you get started.
The following 19 tips can turn an average striper angler into a great striper fisher. We base all these tips on our experience and research over years of catching striped bass from different parts of the US coastline.
1. When is striper fishing season?
You will find stripers in greater numbers between April and October. The months of summer and fall bring in the largest schools, so it’s the best time to go out searching for them.
When the water temperature reaches 60 degrees, striped bass spawn in spring. Most of their spawning happens between 61 and 69 degrees, with a time from April to mid-June.
They spawn in open freshwaters where the current is moderate or swift. They spawn at night and swim in semi-anarchic formations. So you see thousands of individuals moving around during spring along the outfall channels where there are swift currents.
Since they are schooling fish, it becomes easier for them to stay together when they are ready to spawn. There’s safety in numbers, after all. The female in gravel beds, crevices, or sand then deposited the eggs.
The eggs hatch over one to two months and soon after that, they feed and moving towards the estuaries.
Once the water temperature in these estuaries reaches 56 degrees, they begin their journey back to the coastal water. They remain sub-surface until the temperature reaches 62 degrees. They enter the shallow coastal water to feed.
Toward the end of October, they return into the deep waters where they spend winter. During this time, they maintain a depth of between 65 to 100 feet.
During winter, their metabolism slows down and therefore it’s not unusual to catch them during winter.
2. Where is the best striper fishing in the US?
They find coastally striped bass along the entire North American coastline, but they mostly concentrated their population on the East Coast. Here are some of their favorite spots:
- Delaware River – This is a river that flows into the Atlantic Ocean and is known as the most densely populated river for stripers.
- There are several tributaries that are equally good, such as the Indian River Inlet, Lewis Beach area, and Cape May.
- The Chesapeake Bay – The bay is teeming with fish, many of which are striped bass. Concentrate your fishing efforts on the mouths of rivers, such as Patuxent, Potomac, and Rappahannock.
- In New York, you can fish for them in the Hudson River and Long Island Sound.
- Many of their favorite spots are found on the Carolina Coast as well. Areas include Cape Fear, Myrtle Beach, Charleston Harbor, and the Santee River in South Carolina.
- The Atlantic Ocean – striped bass is found in the Gulf of Mexico, Bermuda, and even as far south as Brazil. We can also find them along the East Coast from Massachusetts to Florida.
3. What is the best bait for striper fishing?
The best-striped bass baits include live eels, spot, bunker, and herring. We will entice larger stripers to eat anything from fresh or frozen fish cut into chunks and crabs, sand fleas, bloodworms squid, and clams for smaller ones.
When fishing for stripers, use enough weight so that your bait can get to the bottom. If they are feeding in deeper waters, you’ll want at least 12 pounds of weight. After casting your line, let it sink to the bottom and wait about 10 or 15 minutes before beginning your retrieve.
Avoid using too much weight because the current might take it out. Monitor your line throughout the process to make sure that it doesn’t get snagged.
4. What is the best rod for striped bass fishing?
Stripers are strong fish, so you need a heavy-duty rod to haul them in. Rods between six and nine feet with medium action and a good backbone will do the trick.
Use a line in the 30 to 50-pound range and make sure that it’s capable of handling big fish because you might catch one sooner than later!
The best reels for this type of fishing should feature strong drags, be able to hold plenty of lines, and have smooth retrieves. Remember, this is a strong fish you are fishing for, so having some durability on your side will be very beneficial.
5. What color lures do striped bass like?
When fishing for stripers, white and yellow lures have been proven to be the best colors. They are easy for stripers to see and effective throughout fishers everywhere.
White lures work particularly well around the mouths of rivers and estuaries. When fishing with a spinning rod, a white spinner or a spoon is recommended.
When using a baitcasting outfit, choose a white jig or soft plastic rigged with an exposed hook to ensure that it can penetrate their tough mouths.
6. Can you fish for striper at night?
When summer is hot and the striped bass isn’t biting, night fishing can be an extremely effective way to fill your box.
Night fishing is allowed in most states and regions but check with your local laws before you go out. While modern technology has made this type of fishing a little bit easier, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Be sure to have a headlamp or flashlight so that you can see what you’re doing when it gets dark.
- Use live bait like bunker or menhaden for best results.
- Find a well-lit area like a pier or bridge and fish off of it to avoid other boats that are using downriggers or striped bass trolling lures.
- If you are fishing in an area with many people, try starting out in the distance to avoid spooking any fish when they get used to your presence. Move closer.
- Some anglers find that blue or black colors work best instead of white when fishing at night. There’s no tough and fast rule about this, though.
7. Is full moon good for striper fishing?
There are two types of moon tides; they occur every 14 days. A full or new moon is when the earth, sun and Moon align in one line with each other to produce an increase in water flow during these times.
Boating anglers like myself believe there’s increased striper fishing activity around this time because it makes for better conditions on the water!
There are some who say that the full moon is best for fishing. If you want to get in on this, Plan it out so that you will be fishing when the full moon is in the sky.
Whether it’s true that there are more fish biting of a full moon, new and full moon tides have increased current flow. As a boating angler, the fish are most active during these high currents, making it easier to catch them.
8. Does rain affect striper fishing?
Steady rain or an overcast day is ideal for finding striped bass’s bait. The fish stay down longer in the water because they don’t like bright light penetrating their habitat, making them more vulnerable to predators and anglers alike.
One good sign of a school of stripers below can be spotted by watching surface activity: if you see seagulls diving into the depths chasing small crabs, there might just be some hungry pack members lurking beneath!
9. What depth does striped bass eat?
The best depth for striped bass is approximately 25 feet or deeper. During the day, they will stay in the depths while at night, they come closer to the surface.
You use a trolling weight to determine the depth your bait is running. The fish will come up from 30 feet, so you can experiment with different weights of line and baits until finding out what works best for you.
10. What is the best time to catch striper fish?
If you want to fish for striped bass, the best time is in the early morning from dawn until about 2 hours after dawn and late afternoon from two hours before sunset until dusk. Fishing for stripers can even be well in the hour’s right before a major cold front or rain event reaches your area.
The reason for this is that fronts will push stripers closer to the shore where they can be caught in shallower waters. Another reason is that stripers are hungry after being pushed out of the ocean by terrible weather, so they are more likely to bite at striped bass fishing lures and bait.
11. What to use when striper fishing? (Striper fishing tackle)
For the best results in catching freshwater striped bass, use a medium-weight rod from 6 to 10 feet with either mono or braid.
A good reel to use is one that has a high gear ratio of 5.0 or higher, like the Shimano Tekota 500 or Daiwa Saltiga.
For bait, you can use live eels just drop them off the side of your boat. Artificial striped bass fishing lures are best for night fishing and can include jigs, spoons, soft plastics, topwater plugs, or The Flys.
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12. What size hooks for striped bass?
A circle hook is a popular choice for catching striped bass. Depending on the size of your bait, use an 8/0 or 6/0 sized circle hook when fishing with live menhaden (bunker, pogies), chunk baits, and small spot/eels.
To find out what works best for you, conduct some practice casts into the water until finding the hook size that is appropriate.
13. What is the best rig for striped bass?
When you’re looking to catch striped bass with cut bait, one of the most popular rigs is a fish finder rig. This type of setup features a circle hook between 1/0 and 5/0 that’s attached using a line from 2 to 4 inches long made from chunked up bunker, herring, or mackerel.
For live bait fishing, you can use a basic Carolina rig. This kind of rig features a weight connected to the line with a leader about 18-24 inches long made from mono. At the end of this, the leader is a sliding bead where your hook is attached.
For those who prefer to use freshwater striped bass lures, we can make a good setup with a surfcasting rod. We set this kind of rig up so the weight rides close to the lure, allowing for easier casting. It features a simple line from 2 to 4 feet long with a snap swivel on one end and a weight on the other.
Your hook is attached to the snap swivel, and a leader made from mono that’s 20-24 inches long attaches your weight to the lure.
14. How to rig for striper fishing?
When you use live bunker, eels, or spot for bait, one of the best rigs to use is a basic Carolina rig.
The weight will need to be between 1/4 and 1/2 ounce, while the leader will need to be 18-24 inches made from mono. The hook needs to be between 1/0 and 3/0 with the size depending on how big or small your bait is.
To get started, you want to attach the weight to your mainline using a two ways swivel. Then, the leader needs to be attached directly above this swivel.
How to striper fishing? (How to catch Stripers for Beginners)
If you want to catch stripers, the greatest time of day is early morning from dawn until about two hours after sunrise and late evening from two hours before is a lot of fun and can even be interesting since you have to reflect fast when a giant one bites.
To start, you want to allow your bait to drift in the water by letting out between 6 and 10 feet of line. Once you feel a tug or see your rod bent down, do not panic, since this is normal. Instead, you want to jerk the bait up or jig it while stripping in the reel. If this doesn’t work, try to strip faster or slow your bait down.
Once you hook up with a big striper, then the fight begins that can last up to 15 minutes. Not only are they strong, but they will also try spitting your hook. Just keep tugging up on your rod when this avoids losing the fish.
Best size rod for striper fishing
When fishing for stripers, it’s recommended to pick up rods between six and seven feet long. This way reel becomes easier to handle by not dealing with bulky ones, so can use lighters bait than heavyweights to get more accuracy on the strike.
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What size reel for striper fishing?
If you want to catch large fish like 36-inch stripers, I recommend a big reel and rod. If your target is jigging or using live bait for the fish, then use an over seven-foot-long rod with a 6000 size reel. Otherwise, if you just casting lures from a faraway place that should be around 9 feet with 8000 sized gear attached to it!
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What pound test for striper fishing?
Captain Mike recommends sticking with a 10-pound or 12-pound test. Plus, catching striped bass is made more fun by using this line of strength when you use an appropriate size rod.
Can you bass fish with a bobber?
Bobbers are essential fishing tools that keep your bait at a preset depth while you’re on the water. They should be best suited for waters no deeper than the length of your rod, as this keeps it from sinking too deep and causing resistance if larger fish try to pull it under.
While some people use them with small weights or hooks, they can also work without additional weight because their smaller size allows easier movement in shallow water, where large predators aren’t present.
Warning when fishing for stripers.
- Striper can be a very dangerous fish to handle that often mistakes anglers as prey, so need to use caution with these fish.
- If a striper is hooked, you can tell by its twitches or violent movements. This is when you need to quickly set the hook so it can’t shake free of your line. If this happens, then you should reel up your line and try again.
- Also, it’s important to know that the fish is also very strong so you will need an appropriate sized and suited rod and reel. It’s not recommended to use rods that are too light or heavy for these fish because it can lead to a loss of control.
- With hooking stripers, you want to avoid using a circle hook since they’ll get pinned inside the fish. If this happens, you’ll need to cut the line and use another hook.
- A circle hook would be preferred if fishing for stripers with lures since it will allow for a longer fight.
Striper fishing is a popular sport and there are plenty of resources to help you get started. For example, we’ve compiled this list of 19 questions that will hopefully answer some basic questions about freshwater striper fishing for those who have never been before. If you’re a striper fishing enthusiast, you’ll want to know the answers to these questions.
You can find out about all of this and more on our website. We have everything from information on when your favorite fish will bite into what lures they prefer so that you can figure fewer things out for yourself and get back outside with rod in hand!
We hope the information in our blog post has helped you learn more about how to fish for these delicious fish! If not, please let us know so we can do what we can to provide additional clarity or point out helpful resource links for your specific question.
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