If there’s any form of fishing more exhilarating than sight fishing for cobia, we can’t imagine what it is. Spotting the fish, presenting the bait or lure, and watching the predator attack is just about as exciting as it gets. Are you ready to head out for some sight fishing? If so, remember these cobia-spotting tips.
Spotting the cobia, casting to it, and watching it attack is about as exciting as fishing gets.
Elevation is key. Boats with towers are best for the job by a longshot, but if yours doesn’t have one, do the best you can to get some elevation. While we must remind everyone that safety comes first, in some cases you can securely strap a ladder to a T-top, put a cooler on a foredeck, or otherwise get your eyeballs a few feet higher than they otherwise would be. And the difference it makes is shocking.
Good polarized sunglasses are a must. The Five-and-Dime variety simply don’t cut it, you need a quality pair that increases your visual acuity below the waterline.
Look for anything and everything, not just fish. Flotsam, weeds, buoys, rays, sea turtles – anything. Cobia often hang out around all of these items, and more, so look carefully around anything and everything you see.
Preplan a strategy before you start fishing so everyone aboard is on the same page. Determine ahead of time how you’ll describe the fish’s location to anglers who haven’t spotted it yet (the clock method works well: “the fish is at nine o’clock, 30 yards out”). Post anglers as far apart as possible, so someone will have a cast no matter where the fish is spotted. And have rigs and baits prepped before you even think about fishing.
Don’t waste your time gazing into a sunny glare. There will almost always be a direction with poor visibility due to the angle of the sun and if you’re looking that way you probably won’t spot a darn thing – and you might miss spotting a visible fish on the other side of the boat.