What, When, and Where?? I ask myself these questions after every fishing trip, then I document it. In order to run a successful Inshore Fishing Charter, I find these to be essential elements to record in a journal. If you document Where you fished, When you are fishing, and What you fished with, you will have an idea of where would be a good place to start your trip this time the following year. I record other items too, like the water temperature, IF I caught fish (this could be very helpful in knowing whether or not to fish this area) and also the tide. I fished a location a few weeks ago multiple times during a tide cycle and it didn’t produce any fish until I returned a 3rd time. I know now that this area produces well on slack low water and when I should focus my time.
Water temperature is also a focal point and the reason for this is that fish act differently under different temperatures. Cooler water makes the trout go to deeper water, the redfish school on low tide flats, flounder and Sheepshead head to the nearshore reefs, and some of your bait leaves the creeks. If you keep a good temperature recording in your fishing journal you should be able to compare closely your fish catching in certain areas depending on water temperature. I find a publication called, Tidelog to be the most simple and efficient journal method as it provides a tide cycle for everyday of the year. I purchase one in December and I update it regularly. I have found many journal apps that are great and work on both Android and iPhones.
My Fishing Journal by Mindware Consulting and Fishing Log by MP Fish are both great apps to take a look at.
Keep a fishing journal and keep it up to date to ensure your next fishing trip is productive.