Fishing Apps That Have Us Hooked
Fishing is an age-old pastime that's never been afraid to embrace new techniques and tools, whether it involves different types of bait or rods. Add mobile apps to the angler's bag of tricks, as they offer everything from fishing guides and logs, to solar and lunar timetables, social networking tools, knot guides and more. Check out 15 useful apps for fishermen. (Image Credit: Andreas Berheide/Shutterstock.com)
Fishbrain (Android, iOS: Free)
Fishbrain (Android, iOS) is social networking app used by millions of fishing and angling enthusiasts. Once you sign in, you can use Fishbrain to check out a crowdsourced database with millions of fishing locations. Through the millions of recorded catches, you'll find out where to fish, what bait is working and what fish are biting. You can even contribute your own experiences. Fishbrain also works as a personal catch log to record your angling progress.
Fishidy (Android, iOS: Free)
The Fishidy mobile app (Android, iOS) works in conjunction with the Fishidy website to provide users with a way to save and record their favorite fishing sites and catches and share them with other users. The app provides fishing maps to more than 17,000 waterways, with users able to log catches and favorite sites on the map. In addition, Fishidy includes social features with users able to share information with other anglers and friends, as well as view a feed of current activity and reports for individual waterways. A Premium subscription offers more detailed maps and fishing hotspots, fishing tips mapped underwater structures, and offline maps.
Pro Angler (Android, iOS: Free)
Aimed squarely at saltwater fishermen, Pro Angler (Android, iOS) provides a wealth of resources to users, from a guide to more than 15,000 GPS fishing hotspots, radar weather maps, easy-to-use state and federal regulations and a guide to 250 saltwater fish species. Users can check out weekly updates of "What's Biting" in their region, read up on fishing reports from professional anglers and captains, and guide their boat in to hot spots and artificial reefs. Bonus features include guides to knots, rigs, and gear, a digital wallet for storing important fishing documents like licenses and a variety of fish recipes complete with nutritional info.
FishTrack (Android, iOS: Free)
FishTrack (Android, iOS) is intended for saltwater anglers, providing a wealth of data such as sea surface temperature charts (SSTs), satellite imagery, and marine weather forecasts displayed on a layered map for easy reference out on the water. Users can view the latest SST, chlorophyll and satellite imagery, bathymetry, currents, and sea surface heights, and create and save routes and waypoints. In addition to the navigational data and weather forecasts, FishTrack also lets you look up tides and isolunar tables. The app is available as a free trial for 15 days, but you'll need to pay either $15 a month or $80 a year to unlock premium features.
Navionics Boating Marine & Lakes (Android, iOS: Free)
Navionics' Boating Marine & Lakes app (Android, iOS) provides users with a wealth of up-to-date nautical charts and navigation tools to help you out on the water. Detailed data overlays, sonar charts, community notes, auto-routing, navigation modes, and syncing with a variety of WiFi enabled plotters help keep you on course so that you can focus on the fishing, rather than navigating. Auto-updated charts and weather and tides data mean you're always kept in the loop and up-to-date with potential weather and navigational hazards. The app lets you try things out for 15 days, with in-app purchases and subscriptions available after the trial ends.
Fishing Points (Android, iOS: Free)
Fishing Points (Android, iOS) provides a versatile toolkit of useful info for fishers. You can save your favorite fishing spots, trot lines and trawling paths, with Google Maps and offline chart views to help you get back to just the right spot. In addition, you can create a catch log for everything you manage to snag during your trip, complete with catch photos. The app also includes fish activity, tides, weather and isolunar calendar forecasts. In-app purchases allow you to upgrade to basic and advanced premium versions, which remove apps, add offline nautical charts for the US, allow you to add unlimited fishing locations and introduce more advanced forecast data.
Deeper - Smart Sonar (Android, iOS: Free)
While designed to work with Deeper's portable sonar devices, the Deeper - Smart Sonar app (Android, iOS) also provides useful features for every fisherman with a smartphone. Users can plan their next fishing trip with the aid of the app's solunar calendar and weather forecasts. You can also turn to the Deeper app to map your trip with downloadable maps you can refer to even when offline. You can also log and share your catches with the built-in notes and camera mode. If you've got the Deeper fish finder, you can turn your smartphone into a sonar display, detailing water depth, temperature, vegetation, fish locations, and other useful information with the aid of the castable sonar device.
Fish Rules (Android, iOS: Free)
Fish Rules (Android, iOS) is a handy companion app for saltwater fishermen, collecting in one place the various fishing rules and regulations for a variety of species and federal waters from Maine to Texas. The app uses your GPS and the calendar to highlight relevant regulations; you can manually enter your coordinates to get what you need as well. The app can tell you what fish are in season, how many you can keep, how big the fish have to be and other important regulations. Users can view illustrated guides to regulated species, log their catch, and quickly share images of their catch.
iSolunar (iOS: $4.99)
iSolunar uses data about the movements of the sun, moon and the tides to predict time periods when fish may be most active feeding or moving. The app provides users with Solunar tables for given locations (and users can save favorites for easy reference), complete with expected major and minor activity periods, day ratings, moon phase, moonrise and moonset, sunrise and sunset times, with day, week, and month tables, as well as current and five-day weather forecasts. In-app purchases unlock further features like tide data, custom location mapping and a range finder.
Fishing & Hunting Solunar Time (Android: Free)
On the Android front, Fishing & Hunting Solunar Time is a good option for fishermen and anglers looking for a good source of Solunar time tables to predict periods of animal movement and feeding. The free version of the app provides major and minor time period estimates, rise, zenith and set times for the sun and moon, and a five-day weather forecast all for your current location. An in-app purchase removes ads and unlocks pro features such as saving custom locations and extended Solunar time tables.
FishAngler (Android, iOS: Free)
FishAngler (Android, iOS) aims to provide the tech-savvy fisherman with an all-in-one companion app for their fishing trip, by bundling planning tools, logging functions, and even social features to connect with other fishers and anglers. With FishAngler, you can discover new fishing sites and see what's biting where, as well as refer to 7-day marine forecasts for wind, waves, and water temperature, and tide and river flow data. You can track and organize your catches with a built-in fishing logbook that can record 45 different attributes such as time, weather, and more. Social features provide you with a newsfeed, group discovery, the option to share your catches, and tools to follow particular posts about a particular species, anglers, and bodies of water.
iAngler Tournament (Android, iOS: Free)
It's one thing to brag about your catch, and another thing entirely to have it properly measured, weighed and logged. iAngler Tournament is a mobile app (Android, iOS) that's designed to help tournament organizers and participants track and log their catches, with users able to take photos and log measurements of a catch while still out on the water. In addition to the tournament management and leaderboard options, the app also takes the data gathered on fish caught and provides it for scientific research and stock management, with organizations such as the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission using the data in stock assessments and habitat mapping.
Ikijime Tool (Android, iOS: Free)
Ikijime is a technique for dispatching caught fish with a spike to the brain that's said to be quick and humane, minimizing stress on the fish. The Ikijime Tool app (Android, iOS) provides a mobile guide to the technique, with diagrams for 53 different North American fish species, as well as a variety of others worldwide, showing where to spike a fish, with a searchable database of fish species for easy reference.
Knot Guide (iOS: $1.99)
Spend any amount of time fishing and you're going end up tying knots. Lots of knots. Even if you haven't earned a knot-tying merit badge, fear not: mobile apps like Knot Guide come to the rescue. The Knot Guide iOS app provides users with detailed information about more than 100 knots, divided into 18 categories, including binding, climbing and sailing knots, and most relevantly for us, fishing knots. Users can explore knots by name or category, and each entry comes with a description of its uses, as well as a visual guide to tying the knot. Users can save their favorite knots, as well as read up on knot-tying lingo, as well as share their knot-tying work with other users.
Fishing Knots Lite (Android: Free)
Android users can also check out Fishing Knots Lite, a free app that provides users with detailed pictorial instructions on how to tie a variety of fishing knots. The knots cover everything from attaching flies, hooks, swivels and other bait, with each knot given a short description of use, as well as an illustrated guide on tying it. It looks particularly nice on tablet, with a two-pane interface showing a list of all knots and providing how-to instructions side by side. An in-app purchase removes ads.