Higher is not always better, but shorter means you see less. So what is the perfect casting platform height?
Choosing a casting platform for sight fishing redfish is tough for inshore anglers. There are plenty of factors influencing this decision, and one of those is choosing how high a stand should be.
Casting Platform Height
Before I jump into casting platform height, let me gloss over a few things, just so we are all on the same sheet of music.
What is a casting platform?
Also known as a sight fishing stand (I just call it a "stand"), a casting platform is equipment used by anglers to get elevated to better see fish swimming in the water.
It can be as simple as a ladder.
Or something a little fancier.
Either way, casting platforms help you get higher to easily spot redfish.
How high should a sight fishing stand be?
This is the meat and potatoes of this article. Let's break it down.
Higher you go...
A taller stand is great to see redfish from! But there are pros and cons.
- You can see more from a distance. Spotting redfish at 30+ yards is easy.
- Redfish can see you, too! They will swim away.
- Overhead obstructions like bridges are a pain in the neck.
- Mounting/unmounting a large stand is also a pain.
- Larger wind profile.
- Climbing in and out of a tall stand gets old.
Lower you go...
- I've had redfish swim up to the boat because they couldn't see me.
- Mounting/unmounting is easier.
- Smaller wind profile.
- Getting in and out is easier.
- Overhead obstructions are easier to navigate.
- You can't see as much.
What is a tall casting platform height? A short height?
I consider six feet to be really tall. Twelve to eighteen inches would be short, in my opinion.
In Florida, shorter stands work because their water is clearer. In Louisiana we utilize taller stands because most water is stained with tannic acid or just dirty.
What is the perfect height?
Some guys like short stands. Others like tall stands.
In the beginning I liked tall stands, but learned I hated dealing with their nuances. But, in a short stand I feel stunted and blind.
For me, I have learned 4 ft is perfect for all water clarities, but I am learning to deal with shorter stands because I believe they spook redfish less.
What do the pros use?
Leading redfish tournament anglers use both short and tall stands, depending on their personal preference.
Keep in mind how high your bow rests also plays a role. Some are higher, some are lower.
It's up to you. You must decide what you can budget and what you prefer.
If you're new to sight fishing, I recommend getting a foot stool or step ladder from a hardware store.
Learn what you like, then make an investment from there.
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