Use Wake Baits to Catch More Fish

Crickhopper sunfish

Waking the surface with crankbaits and minnow lures is a highly effective tactic for everything from bluegills to saltwater predators like redfish and striped bass. Here’s what you need to know about this fun fishing technique.

You wouldn’t think a 1 ½-inch Rebel Crickhopper and a 7-inch Cotton Cordell Red Fin would have anything in common. One is grasshopper shaped, weighs only 3/32 ounce and is best fished on ultralight tackle. The other is shaped like a big baitfish, weighs a full ounce and is best suited for fairly heavy spinning or baitcasting tackle.

However, these two baits (along with many others that fall in-between in size) lend themselves to fishing the same way. Both work wonderfully as wake baits, and while the scale of everything, the setting and the fish species targeted differ substantially, the actual technique and the explosiveness of the results are the same.

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Stream Trout Lures You Should Not Overlook

Brown Trout catch

Hard baits, including minnow imitators and specialized crankbaits like Rebel Crawfish and Crickhoppers provide major advantages for stream trout and produce great results.

“This is all they’ve been hitting,” the guy behind the fly shop counter advised my son, Nathaniel, showing him a midge so tiny it was barely visible on the tip of his finger. “With it being all catch-and-release, those fish get very fussy.”

Nathaniel wasn’t planning to fly-fish, so the suggested pattern didn’t matter, but he listened politely and nodded, maybe wondering slightly if a small jig might work best when we got to the stream the next morning. Shortened version: The trout were highly aggressive, and Nathaniel caught most of his fish on Rebel Wee-Crawfish and his best fish on a 3 ½-inch jerkbait that he had equipped with a 1/O single hook. Other young anglers we saw that day were having minimal success.

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