How to start fishing in Red Dead Redemption 2

Learn how to unlock the ability to go fishing at will in Red Dead Redemption 2.

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If there’s one thing that makes me love a video game, it’s going fishing. Each game handles it with varying degrees of complication, and Red Dead Redemption 2 lands somewhere in the middle. Fishing for food and crafting supplies isn’t overly difficult, but players might be surprised at how long it takes for them to be introduced to the mechanic. I spent hours trying to figure it out, but at least you won’t have to struggle trying to learn how to start fishing in Red Dead Redemption 2.


How to unlock fishing activity

Fishing in Red Dead Redemption 2 is locked behind a quest, unfortunately. I was hoping it would be open right from the beginning of the game, but it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that it had taken more than 10 hours of play time to unlock. If you want to go fishing in Red Dead Redemption 2, you’ll have to get well into Chapter 2 of the game. Once you speak to John in your camp as part of the Pouring Forth Oil - III quest, you’ll get a new quest icon for Abigail Roberts. She wants you to take her son Jack fishing, and completing the A Fisher of Men quest is how the ability to go fishing at will unlocks.

Take Jack down to the river and follow the in-game tutorial to learn how fishing works. You’ll need to catch two fish to complete the quest. Once you deliver Jack back to the camp and are free to roam the land again, you can head to any body of water and try your luck at fishing.

To access your fishing pole, hold L1/LB down to bring up the Weapons/Items wheel. Press R1/RB to look at the Items section, then use the right stick to select the Hunting section in the bottom right. Press L2/LT and R2/RT to browse through the options until you get your fishing pole. With your fishing pole equipped, press and hold L1/LB again. Switch over to the Fishing section, then choose the bait that you wish to fish with. What you catch will depend on location and the type of bait your using, so study up.


With a good grasp on how to go fishing in Red Dead Redemption 2, you’ll likely want to dive into our complete fishing guide for Red Dead Redemption 2. You can also take some time to browse through our Red Dead Redemption 2 walkthrough and guide for more help with every obstacle in Arthur Morgan’s path.

Managing Editor

Bill, who is also known as Rumpo, is a lifelong gamer and Toronto Maple Leafs fan. He is known for his guide writing and, unsettlingly enough, enjoys grinding out in-depth collectible articles. Tweet him @RumpoPlays if you have a question or comment about one of his guides.