April 05, 2012
Catchbook Fishing Reports: A Social Fishing App from the Editors of Field & Stream
By Nate Matthews
If you're an angler, you know that keeping a detailed journal of your time on the water is one of the best ways to up your catch rate. That's because, over time, your journal will show you patterns in when and where fish bite, and what lures and baits work best under different conditions. The more detailed your journal is, the more of these patterns you'll see. But keeping a detailed journal requires time and dedication that most anglers can't afford.
Not anymore. Field & Stream's FREE new Catchbook app, just released on the iPhone, is designed to take all the work out of keeping a fishing journal. The app does this by taking photos of fish you've already shot with your phone and automatically converting them into detailed fishing reports that include the weather and water conditions present when those photos were taken. The app pins each report to a map, then lets you share them exclusively with trusted friends and fishing buddies. The more friends you have, the more reports you see on your map, and the easier it becomes to pattern your spots!
Our editorial team has been working for nearly half a year on the project, and it finally launched last week. Now we're looking for feedback from the people we designed it for. You! If there are bugs, we want to know about them. If there's something you think we can improve, we want to know what that is. And if you love something we've done? We want to know that, too.
We'll incorporate your comments into updates to the app, which we're planning to roll out regularly. You can give us your feedback by commenting on this post, or within a new "Catchbook" category in our online Answers section. And, right now, exclusively for readers of this site (and for a limited time only) if you sign up and request user "Field & Stream" as a friend within the app, we'll add 5,000 points to your F&S Online username.
Click here to view the app in the iTunes store, or follow the jump for more details on how Catchbook works. Thanks for checking it out! -- The Editors
POST YOUR PHOTOS
Catchbook lets you turn any fish photo you’ve ever taken with your iPhone into a detailed journal entry that includes the time, date, location, and weather present when you caught each fish. Upload your old fish photos to get started, then make sure to snap away with your camera the next time you’re out on the water. Add records to your journal by choosing the photos you want to upload and telling us the species of fish in each photo. The app does the rest! Add optional information (such as the size and color lure you were using) to create even more detailed records to share with your friends.
POOL YOUR RECORDS
The more friends you invite into Catchbook, the more catches you’ll see on your map. And the more catches you see, the easier it will be for you to pattern your spots. Inviting friends is easy. Invite people you’re already friends with on Facebook, or send your fishing buddies invites by email. You can also find new people to fish with by searching for other Catchbook users who fish in the same places you do.
PATTERN YOUR SPOTS
Every time you (or one of your friends) posts a photo to Catchbook, that photo gets pinned to a spot on your map. Filter your map to show only fish caught at specific times of the year, at different times of the day, under specific weather conditions and water temps, and much, much more! You’ll quickly see patterns in which spots work best under different conditions. Then use the app’s “Best Baits” features to learn which flies, lures, and baits caught the most fish under the conditions and areas you’ve selected.
Map filtering options include:
-- Fish species and fish size
-- Time of year and time of day
-- Moon phase
-- Wind speed and direction
-- Water temperature, water clarity, lake/river level, and tidal stage
-- Barometric pressure and barometric trend
-- Air temperature, cloud cover, and precipitation type
WATCH CATCHES IN REAL TIME
Keep an eye on what people are catching around the country by clicking on the “Catches” tab. You’ll see all the latest fish entered into Catchbook (photos only — no spot burning here).
SEE WHERE YOU RANK!
Find your name in a list of top users by species.