Wednesday, March 13, 2013

3/13/13 Pick 6: Muskie Casting Lures

Muskie fishing can get out of hand in a hurry. At times, you can cast every lure in your possession to known fish holding structures and come up empty. Other days that one lure stands out above all else and you would swear it's the only thing to catch a fish on. Often this leads us to purchasing a second or third color or variation of this lure for our next outing. Multiply this pattern times ten in a typical Muskie season and you can end up with boxes and boxes full of mostly unused lures. I decided it's time to simplify. Here is a list of my six most productive casting lures from the past few seasons.

                                       1) Musky Innovations Mag. Bulldawg

I resisted using these big, heavy, ugly lures for years just because I don't like to follow trends. However, the sheer monster catching ability of these lures is simply unmatched and a big Muskie will hammer these things when she wont even give most lures a look.

2) Musky Mayhem Double Cowgirl        
Speaking of trends, these really are the work horses of today's Muskie hunter. The big double blades fish "bigger" then any other lure in your tackle box. The vibration emitted from these lures takes full advantage of the fish's perfectly evolved lateral line system. I like the JR Double model and tend to prefer gold, green, orange and chartreuse combos.   
                                                 3) Suick                                                                              
The classic Jerkbait that has been around since the 1930's is still a great producer today. I like to work them around emerging weeds in June and early July and again in October and November or anytime over rock structure.                                                                                                                                  
                                          4) Mag Bomber Long-A                                                                
This is the dark horse on my list. Most Muskie people would consider this more of a Pike lure but this is my all time producer for early season or pressured fish. I work these with a quick series of snaps from the rod tip, the more erratic the better. These little baits will zing from side to side, up and down. The real key is to throw slack into your line between twitches like you are trying to snap your line. 
 5) ERC Hellhound    
ERC has mastered the subsurface walk-the-dawg with these baits. You can work the Hellhound with a fast or slow retrieve and since it stays a shallow 0'-3' below the surface it is great over shallow rocks or thick weedbeds.                                                                                                                                   

6) Tie: Top Raider and Flashy Serial Killer
This large spinnerbait is perfect for when you need to grind a lure through weeds where the fish live. This is a great way to get a reaction strike when weed fish get pressured. This is also the best spinnerbait I have seen for fluttering down a drop-off.                                                                        
If I force myself to include a topwater then I choose the Top Raider. There are a lot of good tail rotating lures out there but the Top Raider gets my vote because of it's rock solid construction.                    

Cheers and hooksets!