Be it in a big or a small boat, a fully equipped bass boat or a simple wooden rowing boat, I just love be out on the water to fish. You can fish everywhere and share a really great time with some mates. So, for the start of the 2019 French predator season, I chose to go fishing on my boat with my father and a mate.

A kitesurf would have been more appropriate !

I really like fishing big lakes, and living next to the lac de Madine, I am blessed with a wonderful playground. Well, this year, the start of the season was a bit windy and choppy, but that’s fishing ! It’s a flat-bottomed lake, with an average depth of 3 to 5 metres and a couple of deeper spots of 10 to 12 metres. As always when fishing, I try to find active fish and to do so, you need to prospect.

My favourite lure when prospecting is the DOGORA 100. It a shallow crankbait that produces massive vibrations and yet doesn’t pull too much on the rod. So when searching for fish, I’ll let myself drift with the wind and look for weed beds. I find that pike love to hide in the weeds especially when it very windy. This is due to two things for me : one the pike don’t like the movement caused by the waves; two, it’s the ideal hideout to ambush their prey battling against the water movement, or maybe even both reasons at the same time! Let me know what you think. I try and keep my boat in about 4 metres depth and cast towards the windblown weed beds. Your lure needs to be just under the surface but above the weeds. If there are some pike lurking, hold on to your rod as they tend to really hammer the lures. The DOGORA 65 can also be a good option if you need to downsize a bit. It’s also useful for finding shoals of perch as the pike will never be far ! If ever the fish are deeper, give the GIGAN a try.

The Dogora, a great “search” lure

The Gigan, to go deeper

The Green perch colour is great when the light levels are low, and the fish are focused on natural patterns. The two red spots on its belly enable the predators to target it with ease. It’s a great colour for the clear waters, and often cloudy skies, of the north-east of France.

The Green Perch colour, I love it and so do the pike !

At the beginning of the season, I also like to use lure with blades like the 13 or 17 cm GRUBBY FLASH. What’s great about is that it has been developed to fish as soon as it hits the surface. Awesome for cast and retrieve or up and down style animations. Be sure to use a visible braid like the fluo SLIDEBRAID as it will help spot those sneaky bites as the lure sinks.

Nicolas chose a dark colour for extra contrast.

As always when searching for active fish you need to vary the vibrations all day long in order to adapt to the changing conditions. So be sure to try the GRUBBY FROG or the GRUBBY GUN (single curly tail version of the frog). These lures are often neglected, which is a big mistake as at this time of the year, frogs are way up on Mr pike’s menu !

Frogs are spawning and pike are feeding !

You need to try different lures sizes, even one under 10 cm. I caught a lovely fish on the 10.5 cm Green Perch G’BUMP.

Awful conditions to fish in, but the pike love the wind and the rain !

Finally, make sure you pack some 15 cm PEPS. It turned out to be THE lure of the weekend ! This hyper mobile shad has a flat body and a massive paddle tail that gives it an impressive rolling action. The pike simply cannot resist its flank flashing action. Thanks to this lure, I caught the three biggest fish on the session. Perch version when the sky was grey, Salt & Pepper when it was sunny and Fire Tiger as the sun set.

The Peps, THE lure for slow applications

A boat is great as it enables you to go and find the active fish, no matter where they’re hiding. I don’t use a sonar for this style of fishing but it can help if you don’t know the lake. Tip : look out for the swans, when the dive their heads under the surface, there feeding on weeds and that’s where you need to cast !

I love fishing from my small 3.5 metre boat, and I hope that this article makes you want to give fishing from a boat a try.

If you have any questions let me know via Facebook or Instagram, see you soon.