-By Brandon Wikman
When people talk about musky, they often bring up the infamous “figure-8.” I never fully understood why it was so essential making that silly figure-8 with your lure before swinging it into your boat, until now.
Oftentimes musky, and many other game fish, will follow your bait several yards before chomping into it. This is a common trait in the musky world. Sometimes it’s the erratic movement, swift turn, or circle that will ultimately convince the fish to bite. Many times careless fishermen lose countless opportunities because they pull their bait out of the water too soon!
I caught my second musky ever on a full-fledged follow up only feet away from the boat. I watched as he slumped his back, which jutted out of the water like a shark-fin, and eased only inches away from my bait. It wasn’t until I made my first turn in the figure-8 that he engulfed my buck-tail. I’ve also witnessed many other musky anglers slam on this technique.
If you ever have the chance to feel how rugged and tough the mouth of a musky is, please do. I promise you’ll be stunned by how hard their mouth is. Now considering that their mouth is difficult to pierce, we must come to an assumption that we need to use razor sharp fishing hooks.
Fish, sand, seaweed, underwater tree falls, and rocks will dull your fishing hooks in a hurry. It doesn’t take too much or too long before they turn into “practice hooks.” It’s no different than going archery hunting with a dull broad head. Sure, a dull point may kill the animal you shoot, but I’m not going to take that chance. There’s already enough chance involved in hunting and fishing. I like to improve my odds and control any simple variables I can.
Hooks are often overlooked. Whether it’s bass, walleye, or any other game fish, it’s critical to sport sharp hooks. The finely honed hook will jab into the lip far quicker, and easier than a dull one. This seems super obvious, but so many anglers forget to take out the sharpener and fine-tune their hooks. It only takes a few minutes and truly, those extra minutes will make the difference in a successful hook-set.
Baits and lures come in an array of different colors, shapes, sizes, and forms of movement. Some float, while others sink and so on and so forth. There truly is a bait for each and every day musky fishing. That is why it’s so important to have a showcase of different kinds of tackle to choose from.
Your typical top-water bait is one that can be used any time. The ‘Top-Raider’ has a swirling tail that flutters water and makes a tiny wake behind it. Or else you can try the infamous, “Suick,” which floats, but when used angles back-and-forth in and out of the water. Everyone is familiar with your buck-tail baits that have a spinning spoon attached to it. These are all different forms of lures that can be used at different times of the year, and periods of the day.
Color is by far one of the most significant factors involved in catching a fish. There’s really no telling what day is matched with what color, but the nice thing is that you have the ability to fling the entire rainbow if you wanted. An entire spectrum of colors in your tackle box will ultimately give you an edge when fishing.
These are just a few tips that you’ll need to know before you wet your line!