How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

If you’re looking to learn how to fish; well, this tutorial is meant for you. In this article, I’m going to give you a crash course on how to fish: lessons for a beginner angler.

Fishing has been one of the national pastimes and a great outdoor activity whether done with friends or with your good ol’ self. Most of the time, people learn fishing from their parents or their friends. But if you want to start things off by yourself, take the time to read this article for a basic tutorial and a few tips to benefit you.


How to Fish

This is a basic tutorial on how to fish: lessons for a beginner angler. Fishing is not that complicated. It sure isn’t rocket science, but it’s still going to need some skill and practice before you master it. With these instructions, you can learn the basics of fishing.

Acquire your fishing gear

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Get it second hand or brand new - Photo credit:

Before you can learn how to fish, you need to get your equipment. If you don’t have a hand-me-down fishing rod lying around somewhere, then head on to the store and purchase one of your own. At first, a simple one will do, especially if you are going to fish in a quiet lake.

So, now that you’ve got your rod and reel, you still need to get your fishing line, bait, lures, and hooks. Brand new equipment can set you back a few bucks so at least buy quality ones that can last you a long time.

The choice of fishing line will depend on the type of fish you want to catch, as well as the bait. When talking about bait, you have the choice of using live bait or lures. Live bait can be cheaper and it’s great to use in freshwater. Examples are worms, shrimp, leeches, crayfish, among others. You can even find your own in your backyard garden.

On the other hand, lures are used to trick fish into thinking that the lure is alive and ready for eating. They can be more complicated to use than live bait, and can be more expensive. So, you need to weigh in your options and think about what fits your budget.

Here’s a list of what you need:

  • Rod
  • Reel
  • Hook
  • Lures
  • Bait
  • Bobbers
  • Weights
  • Bucket (for storing fish)
  • Net

Tip: You can also purchase best rubber hunting boots so you can be ready for muddy and watery environments

Select a fishing spot

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

A good fishing spot can hold wondrous treasures - Photo credit:

If you’re thinking about learning how to fish, then you probably have a particular fishing spot in mind. Local parks and ponds can contain fish that are easier to catch for a beginner angler. Of course, you need to get a license regardless of where you fish.

You can also pick a pond or lake that is less traveled by, so you have better chances of catching a fish. Make sure that the land is not privately owned first, of course.

When you’ve pre-selected a fishing spot, ask around the local area about the type of fish that dwells in the bodies of water. The type of fish can determine the type of bait or line that you may want to use.

Head out at the right place during the right time

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Fishing can be more successful at dusk or dawn - Photo credit:

Most fish can be caught in the area where the shallow water meets with the deep water. Moreover, freshwater fishing can be more successful if you do it at dawn or dusk.

While you’re out there, check out the water if it contains any suspicious substances like oil or garbage. These can contaminate the fish and make it inedible.

Set up your gear

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Make sure you have your rod secured - Photo credit:

Assuming that you have all of your equipment ready, it’s time to set it up accordingly. Tie your hook and/or lure to the line with a basic but sturdy knot. Then, attach your bobbers and weights so you are ready to go.

Before you cast your line, you need to put bait on your hook. When using a worm, which is one of the most common baits, pierce the body at least two times through the hook. When using a lure, read the manufacturer’s guide on how to use it.

Cast your lineYou need to find your own technique

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

You need to find your own technique - Photo credit:

If you are a beginner, carefully do a throwing motion towards the direction you want to cast your line in. To do that, simply draw your rod back, then make a throwing motion towards the direction of your target while releasing the line.

Wait for a bite

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Patience is a virtue

Now comes the boring part. In order to successfully catch fish, you need to be patient enough while waiting for one to bite down on your hook. You can sit back and wait for a tugging at your rod, or you can trick the fish into thinking that your bait is alive by jerking the line gently.

It’s important not to be rambunctious while fishing, too, especially if you are fishing with others. Do not use a radio or if you must, turn it down low. Don’t make splashes at the water or make sudden movements if you are standing in the water.

When you feel that a fish is biting down at your bait, it’s time to reel it in, but do so carefully. Make a backward and then upward motion with your rod so that your fish will be hooked. Usually, you can tell if a fish is biting down when the bobber is submerged.

Reel in your fish

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Get reeling - Photo credit:

Keep the fishing rod at about 45 degrees. Do not reel in the fish while it is swimming away from you. Instead, lift the rod upwards and reeling it in. Make sure to keep a firm grip on your rod so that you don’t lose your catch. Most fish will put up a fight when hooked. Again, this will require a bit of practice to get the hang of it, especially when catching bigger fish.

Once you’ve got your fish on land, be careful not to get cut up by its sharp spine or fins. Carefully grasp the fish by the bottom of the head while handling it. Use a net to transfer it to a bucket.

Keep or set it free

Easy Tutorial on How to Fish: Lessons for a Beginner Angler

Either keep the fish or throw it back in the water - Photo credit:

If you’re going to set the fish free due to its being small or not the type of fish you wanted, carefully remove the hook from its mouth and set it gently back into the water.

On the other hand, if you want to keep the fish as a trophy, make sure you pack it in an ice-filled container so it stays fresh. Rigor mortis in fish starts about half an hour after death, so you need to preserve it while on the ride home.

If you plan on eating the fish, you need to clean it first. Cleaning the fish is pretty simple and you will get the hang of it in time. All you need is a small and sharp knife to do the task.

When cleaning the fish, you must first make an incision along its belly, big enough so that you can pull the innards out. You can also remove the inside portion of the gills along the fish’s head.

Next, with the knife perpendicular to the fish’s body, start scraping off the scales until there are no more. Cut off the fins since they are very sharp and can cause wounds while handling.

Wash off the fish thoroughly before storing or cooking. Then, you can head on and cook it with your own green-wood grill! Here’s a tutorial on how to build a green-wood grill for camp cooking.


In this article, we have given you a basic tutorial on how to fish: lessons for a beginner angler. Since we’ve tackled the basic parts, it’s time for you to start gathering the materials for your first fishing trip!

We hope you liked this article. If you learned a lot from it, please do share it with your friends. Don’t forget to leave a comment below, as well. Thanks for reading!

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Sheldon Martin

Sheldon Martin is the founder of Captain Hunter. is a site dedicated to the sport of hunting. We have a deep respect for nature and for the environment, and we therefore take the sport of hunting very seriously. Never think that you are alone in the woods again. Our goal is to share what we know with who needs it most.

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