Free Fishing Log – Printable Fishing Log

February 1, 2009 by  

Our Outdoors
Nick Simonson

“Putting together the fishing pieces of the puzzle”

Use a fishing log to keep track of your fishing memories

Use a fishing log to keep track of your fishing memories

Fishing, no matter how good a person gets at it, is still the grandest puzzle of all. There are so many elements that have to be put into place such as weather, season, bait, lures, and so on. When looked at in hindsight, these puzzle pieces provide a picture of past successes and give the angler a chance to take black-and-white facts, as opposed to blurry season-to-season memories and apply them on the water. To help put the pieces together, a fishing log can be an impressive tool.

Written Record – Printable Fishing Log

The primary benefit of having a fishing journal is based on the fact that ink on paper is always clearer than sifting through memories on the shoreline. Sure, you could remember that those late-March walleyes you caught two years ago were slow biters and needed some real work to catch, but having it written down for review in a fishing log for the seasons to come will help jog your memory with greater ease.

For me, that benefit of having things in writing seems to be the biggest downfall of my fishing logs. I tend to get verbose, and looking back at my old incomplete fishing records, I see they don’t make it much further than May. Adding pictures and drawings turned fifteen entries into 20 pages of rambling. Something simpler is definitely needed that won’t take up a whole lot of time.

So to help myself, and hopefully to help you, through researching log making on the internet and elsewhere, I have created a free fishing log page that can be downloaded here (Click for a Printable Fishing Log) and re-printed or copied to make more entries for a fishing log that is concise and organized. My plan is to use a three-ring binder to store not only the fishing log entries, but at the end of the season, pictures of those same outings.

In putting together my first page of the year (a successful March 12 outing where I landed five walleye and a perch on the recently-ice free Sheyenne River) it took me all of five minutes to get the information transferred from brain to paper. A quick three-hole punch and my new journal is now underway.

Fishing Log Basics

Use our free fishing log to help you track patterns which will improve your fishing

Use our free fishing log to help you track patterns which will improve your fishing

In doing some research, I realized that I do not need to tell a story with every outing, but rather just get the basic information written down so that I can use it in seasons to come. The fishing journal form starts with a highlighted area, with date, time and location information. Added to that is a box that helps me keep track of who my fishing buddies were that day. These primers help set up the rest of the fishing log page.

Next in line on the form are the “Weather” fields that help set the stage for the record. Was it hot, cold, windy, in the middle of a cold front, or during a full moon? All of these questions can be answered, and when coupled with the results of the outing, they help establish how fish bite in certain conditions. Information such as water temperature, moon phase, and barometer readings might not always be available to the angler standing streamside, but when they are, these pieces of the puzzle help make for better fishing decisions in the future.

Get Catching

Next on the log page are entries that tell the tale of the tape. What was biting? What was being angled for, how many were caught, how big were they, and how was it done? The “Results” area lists the target species being fished for along with a secondary entry for other fish that are being caught. As it is not uncommon to catch other fish while angling for your primary quarry, these fields further add to the in-depth review of the process. I have also drawn in the fields of “Memorable Fish,” and Hatches/Baitfish” to flesh out what was being caught and seen. If mayflies are hatching, or there are minnows or crayfish present, these are just more pieces of the puzzle to put into place. Fields dealing with terminal tackle, presentation, bait and depth round out this area of the journal page.

The final two fields are for a more personal touch. There’s a small area for notes as to what was observed and to add some information to the bare-bones workings of the fishing log page. To the right of that is an area for drawing maps of where fish were being caught. Test your artistic skills if possible, as every bit of information helps. The drawings can be tailored to a small section of a river or a whole lake or pond, whatever works for you.

Remember that fishing logs are not completed overnight, and one entry does not make for a pattern. A fishing log is an ongoing process, and similar to a fishing diary, is designed to show growth and knowledge of the past with each piece of knowledge helping to complete the grand puzzle.

Try making your own record using these forms this season, or draw one up for hunting next fall or ice fishing in the winter. You’ll find they are very adaptable to whatever activity you pursue, and will help bring things into focus… in our outdoors.


Comments

5 Comments on "Free Fishing Log – Printable Fishing Log"

  1. Gary Jardine on Mon, 14th Dec 2009 12:26 am 

    Can not find free fish log pdf on your sight

  2. admin on Mon, 14th Dec 2009 2:05 pm 

    See this link:

    https://www.nodakoutdoors.com/media/printable-fishing-log.pdf

  3. ISMAILA MOHD on Wed, 29th Sep 2010 3:51 pm 

    pls. direct me to free fisheries journals. thanks

  4. Lee on Tue, 11th Jan 2011 7:49 am 

    It would be very nice if the link for the log was in the article. Hindsight is usually 20-20. Thanks for providing the link in the comment area.

  5. Dragon on Sat, 9th Jun 2012 2:43 pm 

    Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed! Extremely useful info specifically the last part 🙂 I care for such info much. I was seeking this certain info for a long time. Thank you and good luck.

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