Trout and lures go hand in hand. It’s a principle that can’t be ignored. Trout have keen eye sight, pointy teeth and are fast off the mark to grab a bite to eat. These things alone make them a class act to catch on a cast or trolled lure.
Casting lures for trout is some of my fondest and earliest memories of fishing. Murrindindi, Goulburn, Acheron and Rubicon rivers all played a big part in my overall knowledge of trout angling. Sometimes it was as easy as a 10’ cast with a size 1 Celta and others you would pull your hair out trying to feed a single fish everything in your box. A lot of water has flown under the bridge in the last 30 years and I’ve been perfecting this unperfectable style of angling and I’ve come up with a few pointers that might help you along this slippery path.
1/Sharpness of your hooks
Probably the most important and the most overlooked aspect of all fishing tackle is the sharpness of your hooks. Seriously, how do you expect to catch any fish at all if you don’t have sharp hooks?! Now, two things you need to do! Either get a hold of your standard trebles that your lure came with and sharpen them or make sure that the lure you bought has Owner hooks on it! Owner is the world leaders in treble and single lure hook manufacturing and there is no way you can get a sharper hook. My preferred trouting treble is an Owner ST-11UL. This sticky sharp, thin gage wire hook is all about penetration. You need to apply so little force to get these hooks to set in past the barb that once you’ve used them you’ll never look back! The amount of fish you can connect with and land as opposed to just get a bite from is staggering.
2/ Have a lure that’s represents both a food source and an aggression pattern
You can’t always pick how the fish is feeling so hedge your bets and give them both options in one from the outset. We are talking about lures that mimic bait fish and also to trigger aggression. Bait fish imitations are easy to sort out as the shape of the lure should be long and skinny; too cover the aggression factor what you need to do is give your lure contrast via stripes or bright colours. In most cases the fish will consider the shape first and the colour second. So choosing a minnow shaped profile is probably the most important thing you can do when considering which lure to use. Keep in mind that a floating lure will have a better swimming action then that of a sinking one!
3/ Using skinny line is a must!
Whether it be as a leader off braid or straight through, the fact still remains; skinny line gets more bites! When you look at the power of your average trout spinning rod and what you should have it loaded to before line starts slipping from the spool, you’d be pulling around 300 – 600 grams of pressure. Then when you consider the strength of the line you might use to do this type of fishing (2-3kg) you are punching well above your weight class. 1, 1.5 and 2kg line are well and truly enough to cover any trout swimming. So don’t think they are tougher then they really are! Also by using these light lines you’ll increase your casting distance, your lures will swim better and of course more bites at the end of the day is what we all want.
A culmination of these simple factors will increase your catch rates no doubt. Thin line, sharp hooks and a great looking little minnow lure....doesn’t get any better than that.