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Review: Surf Fishing by David Brown – The secrets are out

Learn all about surf fishing from David Brown's book, "Surf Fishing."
Learn all about surf fishing from David Brown's book, "Surf Fishing."
Paul MacInnis

Surf Fishing


Whether standing on the beach, wading in the surf or casting from piers and jetties, “Surf Fishing” by David Brown will put some new information in your tackle box that will help you catch more fish.

Brown’s book is a recent addition to Sportsman Best Book and DVD Series. It is a thorough look at the sport of surf fishing. The first few chapters lead the reader through the basic fundamentals of surf fishing before later chapters demonstrate how the fundamentals can be applied to different regions of the county. The last chapter underlines the importance of conservation and resource management to a future that offers the same opportunity to our kids as current surf fishing does to us.

After moving to Florida in 1998 I was overwhelmed by the number of fishing opportunities that existed. The one I dabbled in least was surf fishing. It was not a lack of interest, but a lack of knowledge that kept me away. Questions arose about what tackle to choose, how to pick a location, what kind of clothes to wear, and the list goes on. Now, the secrets are out. Those questions, and many more, are answered in Brown’s book. A single volume on the subject of surf fishing is available to help anyone with an interest.

Early on Brown highlights the economics of the sport and gives helpful tips on making the most of every dollar spent on the essentials of fishing the surf. “From subsistence fishing to personal recreation, the low-cost factor removes economic barriers,” states Brown. In other words, just about anyone can enjoy the sport of surf fishing. I would add, that anyone can surf fish with greater success and enjoyment by learning about techniques and gear from the pages of “Surf Fishing.”

One trait I have always found appealing about anglers is their willingness to share their personal tips and techniques, as long as it was not giving away their favorite fishing holes. That trait is demonstrated in Brown’s book. Even though his personal knowledge of the sport is considerable, he draws on the expertise of willing regional surf anglers to sweeten the book’s pages with local knowledge.

One particularly intriguing subject for me was the question of where to fish. To be consistently successful anglers need to fish where the fish are and Brown’s book provides good information on how to choose a fishing spot. This is the type of information that separates a successful day from a so-so day and it is knowledge that normally comes from a lot of experience. Brown supplies anglers with a shortcut to this valuable information by using local experts to identify and explain fishing spots in their home waters.

The book is complimented by outstanding photography of the fish, gear and bait of surf fishing and includes an instructional DVD that features the author.

Another interesting and surprising element of the book is the identification of the many species of fish that can be found in the surf. In fact, as Brown reveals on the video, his research on the project resulted in establishing a surf fishing bucket list of his own.

Brown ends the video by saying, “Enjoy the experience of surf fishing as well as the activity of surf fishing. Take your family, take your friends and just have a good time.” David Brown’s book is filled with relevant information to help you do just that. I recommend it highly.