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When you hook a pike, you know you’re in for an explosive battle!
This is because pike are an aggresive, toothy fish, often quite large, making them one of the UK’s dominant predatory species.
Beginners will find them very difficult to fish for.
So, we’ve put together a list of great pike fishing tips to help you land a monster northern pike!
What is a pike?
Northern pike can be found in many lakes, rivers and canals, and are one of the largest predatory fish in the UK.
They are a brackish colour, with distinct spots and an elongated snout packed with razor-like teeth.
They are usually fished for between October and March.
Young pike are called ‘Jacks’ and tend to eat small fish and invertebrates.
Pike tent to hide amongst vegetation as they wait to pounce on their prey.
This includes frogs, smaller fish, small mammals and even ducklings!
What Tackle Should I Use To Catch Pike?
Catching Pike requires strong and powerful fishing tackle.
A basic pike fishing setup would include:
- A 6ft to 10ft spinning rod, with a casting weight of between 15 to 40g or so.
- A fixed spool reel with a large line capacity.
- Mono or braid
- Trace wire -which is vital as Pike are toothy which could cut through mono. A trace is used between hook and line.
- A minimum 42 inch landing net.
- Forceps for retrieving the hook.
- Cutters for cutting through wire.
- You can use either a lure, or deadbait to catch Pike.
You can view a selection of key pike fishing tackle below.
Daiwa Powermesh Deadbait Rod
Fox Warrior Pike Spinning Reel
Phoxinus Wire Pike Traces
Fox Rage Rubber Mesh Landing Net
Panther Pike Fishing Forceps
Daiwa Hyper Sensor
What is the best bait for pike?
When fishing for pike, you can choose between a deadbait, such as those used in sea fishing, as these are readily available, or a pike lure.
The most popular pike lures mimic a small distressed fish, and are commonly between 6 and 12 inches long.
Lures that look and imitate frogs, bats and small ducklings are also devastating if fished correctly.
Although old school, lures such as spoons and spinners still work very well.
Top 5 Pike Lures
Pike are less active during the night, so we suggest fishing with brighter lures and vibrate to draw attention. Night time pike fishing can be very rewarding!
Surprisingly, pike feed very little for their size. They actually consume around one and a half times their body weight per year!
Anglers fish for pike between October and March to give them time to spawn, and a break!
You can use a deep running pike lure as large pike can often be found at 15ft on some lakes, rivers and canals!
Records show that a monster pike weighing 46lb 13oz was caught back in 1992 by a Mr Row Lewis.
Pike Fishing Tips
Here are some great pike fishing tips and videos to help learn more about catching monster pike!
1. Use Fresh Pike Bait!
Try buying the freshest deadbait you can!
The best method to getting hold of fresh bait is popping into the closest tackle shop just before you arrive at your venue.
Quality, fresh, deadbaits work the best, trust me on this.
2. Cast Your Bait or Lure Out Quickly
Because large pike tend to feed in short explosive spells, getting your bait or lure out quickly after a take or catch can turn your trip into a session of a lifetime!
3. Find Features To Catch Big Pike
Whatever venue you’re fishing, there are certain to be a feature where big pike could be lurking!
These may include deep areas, structures, weedy corners and moored boats.
Move around, and cast your lure regularly to find the fish.
4. Choosing The Right Pike Rig
When pike fishing using deadbaits, a free-running ledger rig is the way to go.
However, if you’re fishing over a deep drop-off, a float rig creates a better angle.
5. Handle Pike With Care
Like all fish, Pike are delicate creatures and should be handled with the upmost care.
Use a large unhooking mat, and use forceps delicately to remove the hook.
6. Use a Selection of Pike Lures
Like hooks, you can never have enough pike lures!
Available in all sorts of shapes, sizes and colours, make sure you carry a wide variety as you never know what conditions the pike will be caught in.
Savage Gear 3D Suicide Duck
Mepps Aglia Trout Spinner
Korum Snapper Drones
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7. The Right Pike Tackle
Pike have teeth, which means you pay extra attention to handling and unhooking.
Unhooking pike with sharp teeth, and fingers, is not a good combination!
8. Use strong enough line
Pike are aggresive, and very strong fighters – so using strong fishing line is critical to landing pike!
There powerful shakes, rolls and lunges mean choosing a mainline that can handle pike.
We recommend mono of between 15lb and 20lb (0.35mm diameter), or if you prefer braid, 25-30lb breaking strain (024mm diameter).
9. Use a Bite Alarm
You can pick these up for between £10-£15.
10. Fish with Wire Leaders
This pike fishing tip is a personal favourite – try and use wire leaders because it will save you time tieing and crimping traces!
Titanium leader material works best as it is super strong, soft and you can use it for knots, thus eliminating the need for crimps and loops.
We really hope you enjoyed our list of pike fishing tips, videos and answered some important questionsa about fishing for pike.
Whether you are new to the sport, or just want some simple tips to fish for larger pike, we wish you luck for the upcoming season.
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