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Plan Your Next Fishing Trip on the Computer
By: Brad Wiegmann


  Technology brings new and amazing products to anglers, who use them to catch bigger and more fish.  In fact, todayís anglers would be lost without their GPS or depthfinder units to show them depth, marinas, boat ramps, fishery information, navigational hazards, and so much more.

  For any professional angler or weekend warrior their time happens to be their most valuable asset.  Ultimately, planning the next fishing trip or where to fish in the next tournament means in-depth map study.  Anglers can now plan their next fishing trip at home with the assistance of Navionics new DVD HotMaps Explorer.  This DVD has over 10,000 fishing maps and includes 1 free high definition map that can be downloaded.  Some of the Oklahoma lakes include on this DVD that anglers will find useful when planning their next fishing trip are Grand, Tenkiller, Hudson, Spavinaw, Eucha, Fort Gibson, Kerr, Webbers Falls, Oolagahl, Wister, Eufaula, Skiatook, Keystone, Sardis, Dripping Springs, McGee; thatís just in our region of the state.  Anglers can also view their favorite lakes in vivid 3D, transfer routes and waypoint information between PC and handheld GPS or chart plotters. Another option the DVD has lets angers print road and lake maps from their home PC.  For more information on Navionics HotMaps Explorer DVD or a complete list of lakes on the DVD and PC requirements, go to or

  In general, anglers traveling to new lakes should begin their planning by looking for areas on a map where bass will be located at for that time of year.  Check lake maps for bottom contours, structure, humps, drop-offs, vegetation, and other key areas where bass maybe located.  Once you have decided on a specific area, check out boat ramps and marinas.  Marinas or fishing guides are good sources of information on what baits and areas to fish.  Other excellent sources for anglers to check out are that stateís fisheries department, the library, and on the internet.  On-line just type in the name of the lake and state itís in; numerous sites related to fishing will appear along with sites listing water levels for that reservoir.  The majority of lake maps will also show navigational hazards and flooded creeks or river channels.

  Planning your next fishing trip from home will allow yourself more fishing time on the lake or river you plan on casting a line.  Technology savvy anglers now have another resource for finding fish, a DVD and their computer. Brad Wiegmann is a professional fishing guide on Beaver Lake and outdoor writer.  Contact him at (479) 756-5279 or by e-mail at