How to Fish for Pike
By: Doug Stange
Laying down some ground rules and revealing secrets of fishing for pike
Among the most-traveled pike anglers in the history of North America is Jack Penny, Newton, Iowa, who has been at it for more than 30 years, from Alaska to virtually every high-profile spot in Canada, and most of the big-fish waters of the U.S., as well. “Have tackle, the curiosity continues and the fire still burns, will travel for giant pike,” his motto has been.
Penny’s rule for catching big fish calls forth the reason for traveling so far and is no surprise: “The first rule for catching big pike is to fish where big ones live,” he says. “Those who search for pike that measure 45 to 50 inches or more, often travel long distances to faraway locations, most notably into Canada. Plans must be made and trips booked well in advance.
“Seasoned anglers aware of the pike’s habits plan trips during peak periods. The early season – spring in most U.S. waters, and late spring and early summer in Canadian waters – draws big fish shallow. On the best days, the action is fast and furious, in obvious embayments, and perhaps in pools below waterfalls or steep rapids in incoming rivers. Lure choices are easy, because during those special times pike bite almost anything, including the classic spoon presentations so famous to Canadian fishing. Those are the days you tell your kids about, your grandkids, or anyone else that might listen.”
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