Northern pikes are known to be the top predators in whichever ecosystem they’re in. These hard fighters often give anglers a run for their money which often raises the question, what’s the best way to catch pike?
Pike fishing is fast-paced and incredibly exciting because of the thrill that this predatory fish brings to the angling experience. However, catching pikes isn’t every angler’s best suit and requires a ton of experience.
Catching pike is challenging with their quick-witted and aggressive nature coupled with their predatory tendencies, so understanding their nature and the tips and tricks necessary to pique the pike’s attention.
Here’s our guide on how to catch pike successfully and get the best pike angling experience.
Pike Fishing Tips
Here we’ve compiled our top pike fishing tips that can guarantee you the pike catches despite the fish’s predatory and unpredictable nature.
By following these tips and understanding the habits of the pike, you can have a triumphant thrill-filled angling experience with pikes stacked up on your way home.
Northern pike is often found amidst aquatic vegetation. Their location is rather strategic as their elongated slender body makes it easy to catch prey in murky and grassy waters.
Thus for pike fishing, your best bet would be choosing an area with ample vegetation with relatively shallow waters. These areas include flats and bays as well as pad fields and wild rice fields.
Areas with structures are an easy bet for finding pike as well due to the camouflaging nature of the location. Pies prefer to hide in areas where their attacks cannot be foreseen.
Cover the Water with Lures
Pies are predatory creatures which makes them incredibly aggressive. They will make their presence known if you’re luring in that area.
If you happen to not get any bites in the first few minutes, change your location and use motor baits to cover a larger surface area with the baits.
As mentioned, grassy and leafy areas are your best bet so cover that area with your lures and keep the jigging and jerking movement going on to aggravate the pike successfully.
Use Flashy Baits
The greedy and easily distracted nature of the pike makes it incredibly easy to lure. Using flashy and gaudy colors is your best bet to get the pike’s attention.
Use the brightest colors you can find, orange, yellow, even neon! Additionally, they get even more intrigued with the vibration-creating lures, so it’s best to invest in spinnerbaits, lipless cranks, inline spinners, and loud topwater baits like buzzbaits to get the pike going.
Choose the Right Tactic
While the pikes are aggressive, it’s essential to understand the best way to catch pike depends on the nature of the pike concerning the season and the locations.
Dead baiting works exceptionally well during winter as during this time pikes are motionless and like to reserve their energy as much as possible. Dead baits attract the pike due to slow metabolism and sluggish demeanor and are more likely to attack at static baits.
Lure baiting is the appropriate approach in warmer weather when the pike is brimmed with energy; pikes are more likely to chase after lures within that time frame whilst the tactic gives extensive coverage over the water surface.
Live baiting is a risky move for any season, but when this energetic fish is in the mood, live baiting is the best tactic to employ. A moving fish intrigues any predatory fish and pikes cannot resist the sight of it.
Pikes are notorious for massive eyes that are ready to catch onto any existence of a meal. So upsizing your bait size isn’t a bad option in this case.
When it comes to pikes, larger and massive baits can be seen from farther distances which is a bonus. The pike will get onto the sight of bigger baits and will use its fast-paced motion to try and conquer the bait.
So don’t be afraid to upsize your bait when going for pike fishing, the bigger the lure the more the pike!
Use the Right Tackles
Pikes are hardcore fighters with a massive built, so you need to make sure that the reel and rod are at par with the size of the pike.
Anglers have reported that the use of tighter lines has lost their pike catches due to it breaking and snapping off the reel quickly. For pike fishing, a sturdy and potent braided line of 30 to 50 pounds is highly recommended when going for pike fishing.
Similarly, average to heavy-duty fishing rods are quintessential for pike fishing to make sure you can easily catch the insatiable pike.
In addition to the heavy-duty equipment, it’s vital to lead up when it comes to pike angling. The bigger the pike, the more you need to ensure a good leader such as a fluorocarbon or steel one.
Pikes have sharp teeth so they can cut off even a 50-pound braided line with ease. The steel or fluorocarbon leader will ensure that this doesn’t happen in any situation and will save you your expensive baits as well.
Despite their rough and tough reputation, pikes are delicate creatures that need to be handled with the utmost care and handling.
This is specifically vital if you intend to let the fish go after the catch. It’s critical not to harm the fish during this process so that the pike can return to its habitat safely. Large unhooking mats prevent the fish from thrashing around damaging itself, however; minimal handling is the best way to go.
If you can manage to unhook them underwater, then do so otherwise proceed to let them off in the water as carefully as you can and ensure that the pike is properly breathing before you let it off to swim away.
While pike fishing may seem to be an extreme sport, this experience has proven to be the most thrilling experience for most anglers, and the thrill makes the hassle worth it.
The best way to catch pike is by understanding the pike’s nature and playing along with its actions, and we hope that this guide helped teach you just that. Happy pike angling!