A guide to using spinners when fishing.

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“Fish on!“.  The rebel yell of the sports fisherman when a fish strikes their offering, bending rod and taking line from the reel.  The drag is tightened slightly, and the fight begins.  Sport fishing is a multi-billion dollar industry in North America alone, and is a sport, hobby and religion passed down from father to son and from grandfather to grandson.  

Pictures of Tom Sawyer with a stick, a piece of string, a needle and a can of corn, or a few wriggly worms conjure all that is basic about fishing; it brings one back to nature, during a time when your only worries were which hole to fish on the creek.  The feeling is the same today, yet technology has lent her shiny hand to the sport of fishing, and many lures on the store shelves today can out-fish worms, minnows, slugs and mice.

Mice?  Yes, mice.  Everything that fish eat is imitated through lures and/or spinners, and the artificial mouse surface spinner bait is a top-drawer, trophy lake trout and pickerel monster catcher.  More trophies have been caught with natural looking spinner baits than with any other form of bait in freshwater fishing over the past few decades, since the Mepps spinners first took the market by storm.  Spinner fishing is very different from bait fishing, insofar that with spinners, you are trying to fool the fish into thinking that they are either a nice, easy meal, or a threat to their environment.

The spinner should be reeled in slowly with constant, slow jerks to the rod, to imitate an injured animal or insect that fell in the water and is trying to get back to shore.  Since the spinners on the spinner bait will spin at different rates when moving at different speeds, you should first try some practice casts, and reel in with different speeds.  This will tell you whether the spoons spin properly, too fast or too slow, and allows you to adjust your reel speed accordingly.  When fishing in faster waters or rapids, fatter spoons should be used, as they slow the speed of the bait attached to the hook.

Shiny spoons, round, concave, oval or even square in shape will do different things to the bait, like a worm or minnow, that is attached to the hook at the bottom of the spinner.  Some spinners have 1, 2, 3 or more spoons and can have up numerous hooks, one treble hook or any variation.  Hooks should be tied in series, so that they hold the bait in position.  Spoons can range from 1/8th inch long to over 3  feet long for ocean or deep lake fishing.  The idea is to make whatever bait you are using to appear to be as real as possible to the fish.

The real benefit of fishing with spinners is the variety that you will have at your disposal.  You should have spinners of all different sizes and shapes, from long and skinny to short and fat, thin and square to thick and round.  Colored beads and flashy rings are added to spinners to act as added attractants, or for fishing in murky waters.

Fish safe, fish smart, fish responsibly.  Fish on!


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