Pier Fishing Tips and Techniques

General Tips

  •  Fish are migratory. Try different sides of the pier and pay attention to times and weather conditions when you are catching fish. Use a good log book to take notes.
  • Fish the Break Water
  • Watch for birds. Where the gulls or terns are usually so are the fish.
  • Look for cloudy water and fish right where it meets the clear water.
  • Try dropping a line straight down instead of casting. Fish like to be close to the pier.
  • Unless you plan to surf fish leave the long rod at home, they can get cumbersome on a pier.
  • In summertime try fishing at night.
  • Consolidate your tackle so you only have to make one trip to the pier, an old golf bag, although strange looking serves this purpose quite well



One-handed coolers are convenient for holding fish and bait. Any fish that is intended to be eaten should be iced immediately. Avoid soaking your fish in water; drain cooler frequently.

5 Gallon Bucket

A five gallon bucket with a board for a top can serve multiple purposes. If the day is cool a bucket can be bait bucket, cooler, and tackle box. Cut notches in the top of the bucket then suspend your favorite lures from the notches. Put ice and bai into separate plastic bags. Cool your catch with the ice.

Other Essentials

Pliers, knife, plastic baggies, fish ruler, rag, hat or cap, bottled water, sunblock, and sunglasses

Fishing Knots

Know your Knots. Click here to find out how to tie many of the most popular and useful knots.

Terminal Tackle

Terminal tackle refers to snaps, swivels, connectors, leaders, weights and bait rigs you attach to end of your line. Use terminal tackle sparingly, use only what is needed. To much terminal tackle can confuse and distract fish.

Use swivels and snaps to allow for quick changes of lures and baits.

Use a flat finished swivel, black, gray, or olive green is good colors.

Pier fishing weights come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Round Sinkers allow for rigs to drug across the bottom. Pyrimid Sinkers dig into the bottom to allow the bait to float free and realistically.

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