Solunar Lunacy… Does Solunar Theory Actually Work?
Do solunar tables really provide an accurate prediction of when fish will feed?
I’m going to answer that question with a true story. Back when I was a teenager two of my buddies and myself decided to go crappie fishing (us Florida boys call them speckled perch or specks). We have lakes all around our county so we had our choice of location. For this night trip we decided on Crooked Lake mainly because we knew the approximate location of a deep hole in the middle of the lake. With no depth finder we were dependent upon some guy’s directions to position our boat equidistant between house A and tall tree B. So basically we were wingin’ it.
I had recently noticed that the calendar in my house was equipped with a feature that showed “peak times” for fishing. It basically gave you a two hour window of when the fish should bite best each day. In addition, the “best days” of the month were highlighted in the calendar. I didn’t know the science behind it all but on this day the “peak time” was about 1am. Myself and my buddies Wes and Travis had class the next morning so we would need to be home and in bed before 1am. We would miss the magic calendar’s peak time. This didn’t deter us though so we planned to be on the water at dusk.
One of us had access to an aluminum john boat with a 9.9 kicker engine. So we loaded up a small Honda generator, 5 gallons of gas, six rod and reels and a half pound of Missouri minnows from the local bait shop. We also were equipped with a 12 pack of Mountain Dew and a couple bags of chips for dinner.
The tactic is simple
We would attach clamp-on aluminum work lights to the sides of the boat (the kind with the round aluminum shield to reflect light). These were all powered by the generator. Running the lights provides us with visibility and since they are aimed down at the water they attract lots of minnows that come to the light. These minnows and small shad then attract the crappie(specks). We would lower the live minnows to near the bottom of the lake on a gold crappie hook under a split shot. Then we load the boat with fish dinners. Such was the plan.
So we arrive at dusk and launch the boat with no problems at all. We traveled to our approximate target area and positioned ourselves perfectly as we had been told by the local “expert”. We knew this hole in the lake to be almost 70 feet deep due to a natural spring beneath the surface. Unaccounted for was that fact that our anchor rope was about 50 feet long. So on to plan B: we were drifting until the anchor reached bottom and we would fish there. Solid plan!
The hours between dusk and about 10pm yielded us one small bass, a catfish and 2 sun bream. Not a single speck came over the side. Our Doritos were gone. Travis was ready to go call some girl. Wes was hungry but I talked them into staying another half hour. The old college try. They had to bite at some point. Big mistake. Or was it?
So between 10pm and our newly set departure time of 10:30pm a tremendous blanket of fog layed down on the lake. At first we thought “oh wow, it’s getting foggy” but eventually it was so thick that I literally could not see Travis at the front of a 14 foot johnboat. I would strain my eyes to watch the end of my fishing rod and try to determine if I was getting a bite. It was time to get home. The problem was, I couldn’t see ANYTHING. So there we were. Teenagers. Teenagers with parents and no way to contact them. Stuck in the middle of the lake with literally no recourse.
The logical thing to do in my eyes was keep fishing. And we did. Then a crazy thing happened. Wes caught a big beautiful speck. While we were celebrating, Travis caught one. As the night got later we began to boat a few more fish. We became less worried about our parents killing us and more focused on catching fish. Next thing you know it’s after midnight and we are still engulfed in an epic blanket of fog. We were still stuck there. And the fishing was REALLY getting good. During the hours of 1-3am was some of the most fun I have ever had while fishing. We caught fish frantically until we ran out of minnows. Like conquerors we sat back and examined our spoils flopping around on every square inch of the boat’s floor. But we were dead meat when our parents found us. We knew they had to be worried.
Just before dawn the fog finally lifted slightly. We made an educated guess as to where the boat ramp was and took our shot at finding it. Eventually we got to the ramp safely. It was time to face the music and get home. Then after we were all loaded up and strapped in we made an error in judgment that would cost us with our parents. Instead of going straight home we “really needed” to get breakfast. So to the local pancake eatery it was.
Travis’ dad had called Wes’ dad who called my dad who drove to the boat ramp. Our truck wasn’t there. And we would pay dearly for letting our stomachs lead us astray. By our logic, all the parents were still asleep and we had already stayed out too late to make it to class so we should just go eat. Not a good choice! Our only reprieve came when my dad saw the bottom of the boat filled with fish. It distracted his fury long enough to allow me to explain being trapped in the fog. Subsequently, he bought me a cell phone and I made amends for the trip to the restaurant. That story lives in infamy amongst three families to this very day.
I later learned that the magical fishing calendar was not magical at all. It was solunar theory that was used to highlight the peak times to fish. On that night our feeding frenzy directly coincided with the major feeding period according to the solunar tables. Doubt solunar theory if you wish but I’ve seen the proof with my own eyes. Through a very thick fog no less but I did see it.
You can learn more about solunar theory and have solunar tables at your disposal by downloading the Fishin’ Wizard App for free at get.fishinwizard.com
Go and test it out yourself. It’s a very useful tool to have in your arsenal.