How The Age of a River Affects How You Fish It

Two men fishing on a river just before duskMany people all over the world choose to do their fishing in rivers. This is due to both personal preference and geographical necessity. If you’ve done most of your fishing in lakes, creeks, oceans, or other bodies of water and you’re looking to fish a river, you should know that there are some differences between rivers and other types of fishing.

One of the most important things to know about a river before you fish it is its age. This will tell you so much about what you need to know to have a successful day of fishing. Here are some things to know about the age of a river:

Young Rivers

The youngest of rivers tend to feature clear, cold water flowing downhill, cutting through rock. They don’t often have much in the way of vegetation, so they aren’t the best at supporting life. However, they may still have both trout and grayling available to fish.

Adult and Mature Rivers

As a young river ages, it will next transition into the adult and mature stages. At this point, the water will begin to become a bit murkier, and the temperature will rise to the level of “cool.” You will see fewer Trout and, at first, more smallmouth bass. As the maturation process continues, you’ll begin to see more Walleyes, Sauger, Northern Pike, Muskies, Catfish, White Bass, Sturgeon, Crappies, Carp, and more.

Middle Aged Rivers

Rivers then transition into middle age, where you will likely see larger drainage areas and more tributaries. The water is now quite murky and getting warmer as well, while the gradient continues to decline. Species will include Northern Pike, Sauger, Crappies, Walleye, and some Largemouth Bass.

Old Rivers

As rivers reach old age, many of the trends that have been going on for centuries will continue. The water will get warmer and more turbid. The gradient continues to drop. Large drainage areas and increasingly common siltation may make dredging necessary. At this stage, you’ll find a lot of Largemouth Bass, Catfish, Crappies, and Northern Pike.

Regardless of the age of the river you’re fishing, you’re going to need to use the right equipment if you want to be successful. Signature Fishing Rods has a wide selection of different brands of custom rods. Check out the selection or call 630.234.6214 if you have any questions.