Fishing Artificial Lures

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Posted by: Captain Woody - Comments Off on Fishing Artificial Lures

thunder-shadAs a long time proponent of artificial lures I thoroughly enjoy a fishing trip with some of my favorite lures. As waters begin cooling usually in early fall you’ll often find me tossing an early morning topwater and as the sun climbs I’ll switch to a large artificial swim or jerkbait.  Depending on the feeding cycle you might not get as many strikes with larger lures but usually they attract larger fish. Like any other artificial’s the biggest factor is proper presentation and the confidence it’ll catch fish.

As a youngster and with a desire to learn how to fish with artificial lures I would take two rods with me. One rigged with a topwater Dalton Special or MirrOlure and the other with a soft plastic worm, jerk or swim bait. Making the decision at an early age; I decided to become proficient at artificial, thereby gaining the confidence needed to catch fish and I’d throw them all day. It must have worked because today I thoroughly enjoy fishing wood and plastic lures and confident in my ability to catch fish using them.

Artificial lures require continuous casting so, your choice of tackle should include a light tackle, 7 to 7½ foot spinning rod and reel spooled with your choice of monofilament or braid. I prefer 8-15 pound braid for its casting distance. Normally you’ll also need a piece of Seaguar Fluorocarbon leader 12 to 18 inches long tied to the braid using a double Uni-knot. It’s now time to tie on your favorite confidence lure using a loop knot.

If you prefer a bait caster to spinning again, you might choose a 7 to 7½ medium to medium heavy rod and reel. If you use braid on your baitcaster I’d suggest spooling nothing lighter than 50 to 60 pound braid. This size is still the equivalent of 10 to 12 pound monofilament and does not embed into the spooled line.

Through the years, it’s my preference to use a good topwater early or late in the day. This does not mean you cannot experience topwater action during other parts of the day. It mostly depends on feeding patterns and presentation. The foremost questions asked is what the best lure is and what color? The lure doesn’t make much difference provided you become adapt at presentation. It ought to emulate a swimming or wounded baitfish and that’s on you. Learning to work a lure regardless of manufacture is to your advantage.

What color baits do I choose? If it’s soft plastics everyone has his or her own favorites.  Anglers are bombarded with elaborate varieties of colors and if were to bring all these color patterns, they’d probably sink their boat.

lures-1So are there any rules for what color pattern to fish?  None, but most anglers’ select transparent or subtle colors in clear water or on sunny days. On cloudy days or stained water, a more solid color pattern is preferred.

So what colors should you carry?  This decision is hard to make.  I usually carry a small variety of color patterns so I can fish in any water clarity or sunny or cloudy day.  However, if I had to decide on only a few colors it would be root beer or new penny for stained water and white or white/light green for clear water.  Now all you have to do is decide what style lure to use and how to work it.
What about topwater and diving lures? Years ago, anglers would pop or chug lures across the surface. Today, one of the best action retrieves is called “walking the dog” or retrieving the lure with a short jerky action. This reel and jerk action makes the lure dart back and forth from side to side. Diving lures are basically swim baits and when reeled have their own action derived from the shape or lip configuration. Basically, color plays a more prominent role in diving lures and the same guides apply as for soft plastics. However, in topwater’s the primary color seen by a fish is the lures belly which plays only a small part in feeding fish. The fish is striking largely on the action of the lure as it’s worked across the surface.

Jerkbaits and artificial shrimp are excellent fish catchers. Jerkbaits rigged weedless or on jigheads seem to attract more attention when using the twitch and reel retrieve. However, when this is not producing significant action slow it down or stop it occasionally. With the new stinky baits tossing one into a likely area and letting it sit produces exceptional action.

Realism is the key in soft plastics. Frequently soft baits stiffen up or become hardened, so if you have one of those expensive swim types that’s rolling or running on its side or do not have the same action as new, you need to soften the plastic. Try suspending it in hot water for a few seconds.  When using a pot over heat never let it sink or touch the bottom. If you do you’ll have a melted lure.

Fishing artificial is both exciting and exhilarating. The idea of consistently coaching a fish into striking a non-natural lure is the true measure of an artificial lure angler. Once proficiency and personal confidence are gained; you’ll find yourself relaxing with a nice artificial lure; anxiously anticipating the thunderous strike of that next trophy that bit on your presentation.

Fishing Florida for over 50 years I offer professionally guided fishing and teaching charters around Tampa Bay, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Bradenton, Sarasota, and Tarpon Springs. So, if you want to catch fish, have a memorable adventure or perhaps learn some new fishing tips give me a call. I also specialize in group or multi-boat charters. Tell me what you need and leave the rest to me.

To Book Fishing Charters please visit my website “www.captainwoodygore.com” or call me at: 813-477-3814.

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