Summer has only just begun, so we can soon expect the kids to be off school, the UK to be heating up with another heatwave shortly on the way! More to the point, the banks of UK rivers and stillwaters will be lined with anglers in the coming weeks. We all love spending an afternoon fishing in the sun, in fact, it is where most of us wish we were at this time of year!
Get Yourself Shade at the Bankside
When it comes to a carping session in the sunshine, it would be wise to invest in a bivvy or at least an umbrella for fishing. Accessing shade for yourself is not only vital to recover from exposure to UV but for your tackle too but when the sun is shining, the temperature and humidity are high, the last thing you want is to return to a shelter with little to no ventilation. The range of bivvies here at Angling Direct boasts features such as adaptive ventilation, to keep air circulating and reducing condensation, insect panels as well as plenty of shelter space for shade. Many of the fishing shelters and brollies are ultra-quick and easy to use and assemble so you can focus on the fishing sooner.
Always Pack a Fishing Hat
Boonie hatsare a great way to keep you cool in the hotter seasons by offering shade to your whole head with the rim sheltering you all the way around rather than just a peak like on baseball caps. If a cap is what you prefer, be sure to load up your neck with suncream!
The Boonie or buckethat style has a classic look that is lightweight, great for wearing on sunny days at the bank as it provides shade and sun protection and often offers a customisable fit thanks to its adjustable cord within the crown of the hat. Many hats in the Angling Direct collection are water-resistant and camouflaged to help carp and specialist anglers blend into their surroundings.
Polarised sunglasses are a must for fishing in the summer. Eyes need protection from UV too and that glare off of the sun can take a toll on an angler, especially when trying to spot fish in the water. A great choice for carp anglers fishing from dusk to dawn is covered in our Fortis sunglasses range.
Aim to pick sunglasses that boast UV 400 protection are lightweight frame and scratch-resistant. Many of the fishing sunglasses we sell, including Fortis sunglasses are comfortable enough to wear all day and come supplied in a branded hard cases.
Not only are glasses need to protect your eyes but when fishing in high, bright sunlight, it can make it impossible to see past the surface glare. Having good vision that goes below the surface is essential if you want to plan the perfect approach, and the brown tint, polarised lenses can ensure you achieve that.
Summer Clothing for Angling
Once you have your hat and sunglasses, your attention should turn to clothing. There are a few clothing options to help you keep your cool and on the bank.
We, here at Angling Direct have got a range of clothing that’s not just the perfect choice for all your summer fishing; it’s also great for the barbecues and other socials that are a feature of the warmer days and longer nights.
If you get a soaking from a feisty fish or are the victim of a short, sharp shower, you’ll be pleased to know that many of our fishing t-shirts are designed to dry quickly, and offer the kind of breathability you need in the height of summer. You can also shop for a long-sleeved fishing top for keeping the sun from badly burning your forearms.
The Importance of Fish Care During Summer
When fishing in the summer, there are some environmental and biological considerations. Fish take longer to process a change in temperature than us humans and some species are more sensitive to water temperatures than others. For this reason, anglers should consider fish welfare more carefully when fishing for all species.
As water temperatures rise, dissolved oxygen levels fall, the speed at which this happens is exacerbated in smaller, shallower waters due to a lower volume of water. Low oxygen levels mean fish will take longer to recover, this is intensified after fish have been on the feed, in short, eating your bait and ending up on the end of your hook is the perfect recipe for exhaustion. This doesn’t mean that we can’t go fishing in the heat, but it does mean we have to take some precautions.
Land fish as quickly as possible and handle them with extra care. Use wet hands when holding and unhooking fish. Wherever possible, keep fish in the water while unhooking. It's a good idea to plan where you can safely land and unhook fish before you start fishing. If you want to take a photo, either keep the fish in the water or keep its time out of the water to a few seconds. This is especially important for larger and more sensitive fish.
What Species to Target for Summer Fishing
One fish to avoid in the peak of summer and if the temperatures are 21 degrees and over, is Pike as they are very sensitive to water temperature changes. In collaboration with the Environment Agency, Angling Trust, Pike Anglers Club, and the Broads Angling Services Group, Angling Direct have installed a 'Live Broads Water Temperature' graph in our Wroxham store. The aim of which is to educate all anglers to the current water temperature and what sort of species they should be targeting and the tackle they need to fish for alternatives.
There are other species sensitive to the temperatures to, it is recommended that if the river water temperature is higher than 19°C then consider not fishing for salmon, trout and grayling. Also, if the river water temperature is higher than 21°C then consider not fishing for large chub, barbel and pike.
Summertime angling promises specimen carp, river roach, rudd, tench, even perch. For sea anglers, June and July time is also a good bet for some double-figure smoothhounds. With smoothhound fishing, as you probably know, you need the right conditions and tides as well as season. Be sure to do some tide research before setting off for a sea fishing trip.
You should try to avoid using keepnets as they will retain fish in warmer water at the margins during hot weather. However, if you choose to use a keepnet place it in as deep water as possible and at right angles to the bank, so any water flow can pass through the mesh.
Release fish as soon as they're fully recovered, making sure they're showing strong signs of movement before doing so. This may take several minutes. Hold them upright and with their head facing into any water flow. This will help oxygenate the water to flow across their gills. You can also hold fish in a landing net so that they are away from the bank, making sure their head is facing into any water flow.
Best Time of Day to Go Summertime Angling
On rivers, consider fishing earlier in the morning when water temperatures are likely to be lower. But be careful fishing stillwaters early in the morning, in case an algal bloom has reduced dissolved oxygen levels.
Use of Fishing Bait in the Summer
It is wise to minimise your use of groundbait during the warmer months. A reason for this is that as groundbait decomposes it can further reduce the amount of dissolved oxygen in the water meaning that fish feeding on ground bait may have a greater oxygen need, so take longer to recover from being caught.
Pack Plenty of Water and Food for Fishing
Not only is it important to bait and take care of the fish in the summer heat, but be sure to take plenty of drinks, preferably water to keep you hydrated when at the bankside. A great way to keep your drinks from getting just as warm as you are to invest and take a cool box or thermal cool bag that is made to keep its contents nice and cool for your time at the bankside.
For further fishing tips, tactics and advice for the summer fishing season, be sure to watch Angling Direct’s Youtube tutorials or follow our social media to keep updated with our guides on the AD blog.