Marinas: Overlooked Summer Hot Spots


As the summer months progress, many look to deep-water environments like main-lake open-water basins, creek channels or main river edges in reservoirs and drop-offs or weed edges in natural lakes. Most anglers don’t consider the marinas after spring, but these can be some of the best spots to fish now. Almost all marinas will have some sort of baitfish or crayfish in the rocks, and not to mention the larger predators feasting on the available forage.

What marinas offer

Marinas can be less affected by weather than the main body of water. Due to their relatively closed environment, the waters there can remain more stable in temperature, current and coloration, except for the entrance to the main lake where other factors matter. Marinas can also be a sanctuary from wind too.

Top spots for marina fish

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There are many locations to find these find in and around:

  • Rock riprap of varying sizes can be found in many marinas. The rocks help to shore the banks and prevent shoreline erosion due to wind and waves. Rocks often hold crayfish and attract baitfish to the algae growth. Look for any irregularities in the riprap shoreline to hold fish.
  • Docks offer shade and usually quicker access to deeper water. When fishing docks from a boat, be extra careful when casting around moored boats. Boat owners are rightfully concerned about their investments.
  • Walkways from the shoreline to the piers and boat slips can be productive. Besides the shade provided by the walkways, there are sometimes rocks or debris underneath that can attract larger predators.
  • Weeds are not found in all marinas, but can be one of the more productive areas when they are. Weed growth varies due to water clarity and composition of the bottom. Try the insides and outsides of the weed edges and indentations along the weedline or pockets that you may find.
  • Boat launch ramps and the fish numbers there may surprise you. Try the edge of the ramp where the concrete meets any rock riprap. Another good area is where a ramp ends and meets the bottom. These often offer slightly deeper water because boat motors “blow out” holes when loading and unloading trailers.
  • Steel walls may or may not be available, but they can be another “sleeper” spot. Steel walls as part of a shoreline can be a good area where the wall meets rock riprap or natural shoreline.
  • The entrance to the marina from a main lake is a transition area where water clarity, temperature changes and current will often differ from the confined water inside the marina itself. This is due to more exposure to wind from the main lake. Water depth can also increase around the mouth of a marina, and is possibly some of the deepest.

Rules and regulations

It seems that every marina has its own set of rules regarding fishing opportunities inside that area. Many do not allow any fishing from boats, but do offer a designated area for the shore fishermen. If you’re a boat fisherman, it’s your responsibility to know and understand the rules before launching and venturing out. Knowing and obeying these rules will help you avoid any problems or fines.