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Improve Your Fishing with The 5 Best Fishing Books

All good fishermen seek out ways to improve their game.  This could be experimenting with different lures, attending presentations, talking to other anglers, watching videos or reading books.

During my time fishing there are just a handful of books which I felt really helped me improve as a fisherman and catch more fish.   I thought I’d share them with you, so you too could benefit from them.

Snohomish Coho

The Master Angler

by Phil Rabideau


Phil was a lure designer for Mepps lures, and he brings that experience to the table in this book.  He covers how lures look under the water, and how fish perceives them.  How the lures look change based on the base color of the water, as well as depth.

One of the things I learned from this book was how best to select which lure to use based on the current conditions.  After reading it my catching really improved.

Trolling Truths for Trout, Kokanee and Landlocked Kings

by Sep & Marilyn Hendrickson


Sep is the founder of Sep’s Pro Fishing, which makes fishing tackle.  For some reason their products are hard to find in my local tackle shops, but they make a wide variety of lures – mostly oriented around trolling – that work great.  Their dodgers are among my favorite for kokanee and sockeye.

In their book Sep lays out his vast experience trolling.  If you want to become a trolling master, then this is a must read.  He covers how to achieve the right depth, and how speed and lure selection must match.

Lake Fly Fishing Manifesto

by Mike Croft


Don’t let the fly fishing in the title mislead you.  This is an excellent book which covers where trout are, and how they behave in lakes through all four seasons of the year.  Even if you have no interest in fly fishing at all, this book will help you find fish and get your lure to where they will bite it.

The book is also a fun read – lots of humorous sayings, and funny illustrations help keep it light and fresh, while conveying the useful information.

Regardless if you are just starting to fish for trout in lakes, or an expert looking for a few tips, this book will have something for you.

Stillwater Presentation

by Denny Rickards


Denny Rickards is an expert in catching large trout in lakes.  By large trout I don’t mean a pound or two, but rather really big trout – once in a lifetime trophy trout (well for those of us who aren’t Denny).  I’ve had the pleasure of hearing him speak a few times, and it was both entertaining and informative.

He has written several books, but Stillwater Presentation is the best, in my opinion.   He thoroughly dissects the lake habitat, and the behavior of large trout.  He breaks down lake fishing into different “zones” and then covers how to effectively fish each zone.


It is oriented towards fly fishing, but even if you are casting powerbait there is much you can learn from this book – after all if your bait isn’t where the fish is, then how are you going to catch that monster?

Bank Fishing For Salmon and Steelhead

by Scott Haugen


I’ve read several books on salmon and steelhead fishing.  Unfortunately, most are written by people who are great fishermen, but not great writers.  As a result, most aren’t that helpful and are pretty slim on content.  But not this book – Scott is a veteran author and he lays out the details of fishing for salmon and steelhead in rivers.

Even though it is targeted as bank fishermen, much of the information applies if fishing from a boat.

If you are a beginning salmon or steelhead angler, then this book will help reduce that steep learning curve.  If you are experienced, then you will undoubtedly pick up some useful tips.

Talk Back

I hope you enjoyed this list of the top 5 books which have influenced my fishing journey.   You will find them all enjoyable and informative.

Please comment and let me know what you think about these books.  Is there any book you’d add to the list?  What resources help you learn?

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