Wading For Redfish: Best Tactics, Tackle, & Tips (With Wader Dave)
There’s not much that beats the simplicity of wade fishing!
And when you are targeting big redfish in shallow water it’s the way to go.
So we teamed up with our very own Wader Dave to bring you some of the best tips for targeting redfish while wade fishing.
In this video, you’ll learn how to choose the best spots, which lures work best, and how to retrieve for the most strikes.
Check it out below!
Wade Fishing For Redfish [VIDEO]
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When you are wading for redfish, you want to look for sandy pothole areas that are connected to marshes.
Here you are going to have the best chance at finding a good outflow of bait.
Redfish will typically position themselves just on the outside of the marsh and wait for the baitfish to either flow out with the tide or get pushed out by the wind.
All you have to do is find the shorelines that lead up to the marsh and follow it.
These spots will typically be holding the bigger fish, especially if there is seagrass or oysters around.
There are really only two types of lures you need when wade fishing for redfish.
One is the paddletail to be your search bait.
And the other is a jerk shad to use after you know where the fish are feeding.
Here are the lures that Dave and I were using to catch big redfish:
A paddletail in a lighter color like the white Slam Shady works in a wide variety of areas and works great in both clean and dirty water.
After you’ve found the fish, a darker jerk shad with some sparkle or flash will attract the fish very quickly if presented correctly.
Twitch, twitch, pause.
Twitch, twitch, pause.
This is how I retrieve the jerk shad once I’ve dialed in the location of the fish.
It presents as a smaller baitfish with erratic, darting action that predator fish cannot resist.
When I’m using the paddletail as a search bait, I like a constant retrieve with short pauses and typically you’ll get that strike on the pause.
As you work the paddletail while wading, you can really sneak up on the fish without worrying too much about spooking them and that’s why wade fishing is so effective if you want to catch big fish.
You can find many more wade fishing tips in our Wade Fishing Mastery Course by Wader Dave, and also be sure to check out the Spots Mastery Course that teaches you how to scout for fish by analyzing trends using satellite maps.
Wade fishing is an excellent way to get on some big redfish with minimal resources.
You don’t need a lot of gear or a boat to start wade fishing.
You’ll just need to know how to find the fish, what tackle you need to bring, and how to use it.
Are you planning to wade fish for redfish this year?
Let me know down in the comments!
And if you know someone who plans to start wading for redfish, please TAG or SHARE this with them!
Also, if you’d like to head out with Wader Dave to target some redfish (plus snook and trout!) visit www.wadersguide.com to book a trip with him! Salt Strong Insiders receive a 10% discount on bookings!
P.S. Want access to our best fishing spots and tips, plus discounts to our online tackle store? Click here to join us in the Insider Club!
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Great content as usual, Wyatt. Question, what net is that? I love that it floats.
Thank you Mike!! It’s the G2 Pro Wading Net made by a local company called ForEverLast!
Great stuff Wyatt. What brand / size is that net?
It’s the ForEverLast G2 Pro Wading Net!
Are there in areas in Jacksonville or in the Spring Warrior and Keaton Beach area to Wade fish?
Yes! As I covered in the video, you can employ these tactics outside of the marshes in JAX (I don’t recommend wading inside marshes because of pluff mud) but the dense sandbars that border the outside of them or the edges of causeways often are firm enough to wade, and they provide close proximity to inflow/outflow areas with good bait concentrations, and predators will often hang close by!
What do you do with the Reds or Trout that you decide to keep while wading? Surely you don’t tie a stringer to your waist?
I don’t ever keep fish, but there is a stringer attachment that came with the belt (which I turned into a leash for my kayak) but most folks will wade with the stringer behind them. It’s long enough to where if a shark was to pick up on the scent and go after it, it could easily be ditched and you’d be a safe distance away. Honestly though, I think sharks are much less of a problem than people think they are, and your large presence in the water is often enough to deter them. Larger specimens usually do not come in water that’s the depth you’ll be wading in, unless you’re fishing directly off the beach.
Great video ! What is the make of the wading belt & net that you are using? Appears to be exactly what I have been looking for to minimize the trips back & forth to the shore. I wade fish the Lovers Key, Fla . beach and back bays / inlets
Hey Michael! The belt is from a local company here in TX called ForeverLast, and it’s their G2 Pro Series Belt.
Cool waist pack. Can you let us know the brand and where to buy?
Hey Bob! I’ll have a full review of the belt, but it’s from a brand here in TX called ForeverLast, and it’s their G2 Pro Series edition.
Love the video. Probably a pretty obvious answer, but I guess I’m looking for a bit more detail.
I hear a lot of references to “potholes”. When you refer to this, what exactly are you searching for? Is it a hole in the thick grass that reveals a small sandy hole? Is it just basically like a pothole in a roadway, a small irregularity in the bottom? What exactly am I looking for because I hear this term used a lot in many of the tutorials?
Thanks for the help! I am learning a ton from this community and the club! Love it!
Potholes can be actual depth changes within a flat that are round and depressed within a grass flat, but oftentimes I’m just looking for white circles I can cast at. Some of these are deeper then the surrounding areas, and others are just a patch of sand that’s surrounded by grass. Fish will hold in both, but when you’re on the water, make sure you’ve got your polarized glasses on, and cast at the edges/right over those white circles you see within grass flats! Fish relate to these and they’re easily spotted on satellite maps as well, making scouting a quick pinch!
Great video Dave and Wyatt thanks for sharing. Really liked the graphics on the map
Absolutely Steve! I’ll continue to add these graphics in! Glad to hear you found them helpful.
Nice quick video Wyatt! Great info and tactics. I have an area that I am itching to try and the insights here and from Wader Dave’s course have me feeling confident. Well except for the kayak report I had this week of the 6-8 foot gator cruising the shoreline!
How awesome!!! I can’t wait to see what you catch Gary! Watch out for that gator though!
☆ Busy man today Wyatt putting together videos! I tried the paddle tail scout retrieval today. I need to play with it some more. The mirrolure lil john rootbeer is my go to on the regular.
Gotta bring y’all the most up to date info!
Glad you were able to give the paddletail a shot today. I’m sure you’ll start to see it’s advantages as you cover more ground (and find more fish!)