|Northern Pike Fishing Tips: Location, Season and Structure||April 17, 2020 @ 9:22am|
|If you're going Northern Pike fishing, here are a few tips to answer the question, "Where are the Pike?" Finding where Pike are lurking often depends on the season of the year and the structure of the lake best beginner baitcaster.|
So, first of all, get a map for the lake where you'll be fishing. With a contour map (or lake map) that shows depth, location of drop offs and points, you can plan which Pike fishing locations to try first. (The places where the lines of the map are closer together and then suddenly are further apart, are places where the drop offs are.) This will save you the time and energy of cruising around the lake trying to decipher good locations by eye.
Pike fishing techniques vary with the season. In spring, when ice has moved out, you can often ease up on Pike in stealth mode and see them hanging out in very shallow water. This is the time to cast your top water spinners such as Mepps, or Rappala.
In early summer, the water warms up, weeds start to grow, and large Northerns venture to the safety and lower temperatures of deeper water. They will come back to weeds, lily pads, or sunken islands for food and cover. Spoons, top water lures, and Johnson Minnows will slide easily through the weeds and can be tipped with a minnow or Berkeley Gulp, curly tail grub.
In late summer and fall, big Northern Pike reside primarily in deep water, and must be enticed with lures and rigs that run deep, like dead bait rigs, jigs and other deep runner jerk baits. The fish will most likely relate some to shallow water, but they'll spend most of their time in the deeper water as temperatures cool down and winter approaches. I've had good luck at this time of year with large Muskie lures such as the Tandem Black Fury Musky Killer. Casting this lure over the weeds and reeling it in quickly so the blades flutter over the surface of the water, is very attractive to a pike looking for a meal. Pike will follow the lure up to the boat and take the lure just before you pull it out, so pay attention!
In winter, Northern Pike fishing tips become all about ice fishing! You can often find a Northern in 5 to 7 feet of water. They move a little slower in winter, but they still like to grab a quick meal from a dead bait rig. If you prefer spearing them, a decoy will help attract them to your spot. Be sure to tie your spear to your arm so you don't lose it under the ice after you throw it! Don't forget your lake map. It will still be useful in this situation to help you determine where the shallow water drops off and it will help you figure out where to place your shanty and tip-ups.
No matter what season you choose to go fishing for pike, you will have an exciting time. If you pay attention to structure and the unique techniques of each season, your fishing will be even more productive.
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