Summer time often rimes with holidays and therefore a bit more time to go fishing. Sadly it is not the best time of year for regular catches, in this article I will explain how I go about fishing this period of the season.


Go with the flow.

I am lucky to live next to 2 big fast flowing rivers, the only thing is that they both lack in depth meaning that you can only fish them during the summer and beginning of autumn otherwise the current is too strong. These same zones are just perfect when the temperatures rise and the fish seek the faster more oxygenated areas.

A typical Loire hot spot.


Summer fishing for pike.

These types of rivers are often home to some very nice sized pike which tend to love to hide in the weed beds. I really like to fish these spots with surface and shallow diving hard lure like:

- The MEGALON (size 105 and 130) this stickbait has the ideal sound to make pike go mad. It also works really well on chub and big perch.

- The ITOKA (size 155F), this 2 in 1 lure is perfect for these spots. Without its bill it will swim just under the surface, with it, it will go down a bit more with a tighter swimming action. This is THE lure for fishing submerged weed beds.

- The DOGORA (size 65F and 100F), this is my favorite shallow crank bait for pike. Its slow rolling action is just what you need to fish across the current in shallow zones where big pike wait in ambush for unsuspecting prey to swim by.

Even if the margins may look appealing, don’t make the mistake of neglecting the main current as many big fish can be found in this part of the river. Rod wise, my favorite one for this season is the YURAI C-210 H which has more than enough power and backbone to muscle a pike out of the current and into the landing net.

A 1.16m pike caught in the middle of the river above a weed bed on the ITOKA 155F.


The ITOKA 155F, almost completely swallowed!

Rocky areas are also great, especially when they’re spot in the middle of the river. Start fishing them from as far away as possible with a hard or a soft bait, sometimes they can hold a nice surprise. For example this 90cm pike caught on the 2” GRUBBY SHAD when targeting perch!

90cm pike caught on perch finesse gear.


Don’t forget to try and catch a zander or 2.

In most big rivers, the zander population is quite good, and the different variety of spots means that you can fish them all day round. The best spots for them are the deeper areas, where 2 rivers meet, behind rocky bars, around bridge pillars...

At this time of year they are essentially targeting fry so the biggest size lure that I’ll use is a 3” size, the GRUBBY SHAD, the WHIZ and the CLIPPER are perfect. I just love the "Red Ghost” , the “Motor Oil Flake”, the “Ghost Brown” and the “Brown Sugar” colors. Using mainly the G’FOOT GUARD mat natural 3.5g and 5 g jig heads I fish them right in the middle of the structures, just where the fish are hiding. For this season I have found the perfect rod for this style of fishing, the GUNKI IRON-T 210 ML.

Depending on the type of spot I’ll fish it differently:

- Underwater trees or branches: I try and send my lure as deep as possible into the structure.

- In eddies and counter currents: I let my lure fall to the bottom and keep it a couple of centimeters above it (pick up open and holding the braid with my fingers) and guide my lure to make it swim as naturally as possible.

River zander caught in the middle of summer.

If you like fishing at dusk, then it’s time to target the main body of the river, where the water flows the fastest. These spots I fish as the sun sets with deep diving hard baits like the GUNKI MOTHRA. These long bill crankbaits work miracles on these spiky fish!

Nice brace of zander caught on the MOTHRA 90F.

I will be back very soon with some more advice on how to make the most of summer time fishing, until then, keep fishing.

David Bourdet.