One of the new features introduced in Far Cry 5 is the ability to go fishing. You can unlock fishing early in the game, but the nuances of how best to catch fish, get new fishing rods and lures, and find the best fishing locations aren’t readily apparent. Instead, fishing in Far Cry 5 is sort of like it’s own little game inside a game, and it’s a real challenge to learn how to be the best fisherman in Hope County.
In our Far Cry 5 fishing guide, we’ll tell you all you need to know about the best fishing spot locations, how to get the best poles and lures, how to beat the fishing challenges, and how to beat regional fishing records.
How to Unlock Fishing in Far Cry 5 and Get Your First Fishing Rod
Before you can actually go fishing in Far Cry 5 for the first time you need to get through the opening part of the game on Dutch’s Island. Once you complete the tutorial tasks for Dutch, the rest of Hope County will open up, and you’ll be able to head in whichever direction you choose.
You can buy a fishing pole from any shop that sells weapons throughout Hope Country, but we’re going to point you in the right direction and get you one for free. To get the official Far Cry 5 fishing training you’ll need to head over to Dylan’s Master Bait Shop at the border of the Whitetail Mountains and speak with Skylar. She’ll send you on a side mission called Tools of the Trade, and when you finish it, she’ll agree to teach you how to fish.
If you don’t want to go to all that trouble, there’s another surefire way to get a fishing pole early in the game. After you finish up the tasks on Dutch’s Island, head to the east side of the island and look for a dock. There you’ll find a man who acts as a shop. Not only will he sell you weapons, but he also has the first two fishing poles available in his inventory for purchase.
How to Catch Fish in Far Cry 5
The fundamental basics of fishing in Far Cry 5 aren’t all that hard to get. The fishing in this game works a lot like it does in Final Fantasy XV, so if you’ve played that game, you can apply the same techniques here. Once you have a fishing rod, you can equip it by opening the Utility Wheel and selecting it from the up position; then you’re ready to start fishing.
To cast your line, point towards the water and hold the fire button. You’ll begin swinging the line back. The longer you press the fire button the further your line will cast. Once you’ve got your lure in the water, you can begin enticing the fish by slowly reeling in. When a fish bites, you’ll get a prompt to hook it. Then the fight is on.
To catch a fish, you must start reeling while holding your rod in the opposite direction it’s trying to swim. You’ll have to watch your line though as it will change colors to indicate how much tension is being put on it. When it starts turning from yellow to orange, you need to quit reeling and move the rod in the direction the fish is swimming to release the tension. Once the line turns green again, you can go back to reeling the fish in.
The first fish you’ll likely catch is the Rainbow Trout. It won’t put up too much of a fight, but it’s an excellent fish to practice on before you move to the harder specimens in Far Cry 5.
How to Get Better Fishing Rods and Lures in Far Cry 5
Unless you’re specifically seeking out a fishing rod, the first one you’ll likely come across is the Basic Fishing Rod, though the Natural Fishing Rod is also available in shops from the start. However, there are four rods total in the game, with the best two having special unlock prerequisites.
Far Cry 5 Fishing Rod List
Basic Fishing Rod
- Description: Strong and durable, this rod is perfect for anyone new to fly fishing.
- Range: 2
- Rate of Fire: 2
- Handling: 2
Natural Fishing Rod
- Description: A mid-range fly fishing rod with a high gauge line and a fast reel.
- Range: 2
- Rate of Fire: 4
- Handling: 4
Wonderboy Fishing Rod
- How to Unlock: Help Skylar at the Dylan’s Master Bair Shop in Whitetail Mountains.
- Range: 2
- Rate of Fire: 9
- Handling: 6
Old Betsy Fishing Rod
- How to Unlock: Beat each region’s state records by fishing at hard spots across Hope County.
- Range: 2
- Rate of Fire: 6
- Handling: 9
Basically, the best thing for you to do is to get the Wonderboy Fishing Rod ASAP. Skylar’s quest is easy to fulfill and having the second-best rod in the game is crucial for some of the hard fishing spots.
Far Cry 5 Lure List
You don’t actually have to buy lures in Far Cry 5, though that would have been cool. Instead, you start with the Basic Mayfly and earn the other four when you unlock the Fisher King perk in the survivalist skill tree.
The five lures in Far Cry 5 are:
- Basic Mayfly: Can catch most fish, good all around lure.
- Bass Popper: Used to catch larger bass, but works with other fish too.
- Hybrid Sturgeon: Attracts heavier Sturgeon, but can also be used to catch other fish.
- Salmon Egg: Can bring in big Salmon, but works with other fish as well.
- Trout Bugger: Used to lure the largest Trout, but attracts other species too.
Some of the large, uniquely named fish can only be hooked with the particular lure they find attractive. Usually, you’ll find this out by talking to someone or finding info about the named fish in the region, but sometimes you just have to guess at which one to use.
How to Find Hard Fishing Locations in Far Cry 5
While you can drop your line anywhere, there’s water in Far Cry 5, that doesn’t mean you’re gonna catch any good fish. To find the large fish that sell for the most you’re going to have to find particular fishing spots. The best way to do this is to be on the lookout for outdoors magazines and maps that detail where they are. Once find the appropriate intel, you’ll be able to check your map to find them.
The most lucrative places to fish in Far Cry 5 though are the locations marked “HARD.” It’s here you’ll find the strongest fish that sell for the most money. Beware though; they’re a lot tougher to reel in than the fish in regular spots, so be prepared to put your fishing skills to the test.
How to Beat Regional Fishing Records in Far Cry 5
The ultimate goal of fishing in Far Cry 5 (other than relaxing and having fun) is to beat the Hope County regional fishing records. You’ll find a regional fishing record board in each of the three region’s main settlements. There’s one located at Fall’s End, one in Hope’s Den, and one in the Hope County Jail.
Each regional fishing records board shows a picture of the species you can catch in that region and the record weight for each fish. To find the fish you need to catch to beat each record, you’ll have to search for hard fishing spots. In these fishing spots, you’ll find the fish you need to beat the records but be warned, these will be the hardest fish to catch in the game.
For more info on Far Cry 5 see our game hub or the articles below.