Monday, April 13, 2009
Fly fishing for northern pike is a blast
You don't hear or read about it very often but northern pike can be caught readily on a fly rod.
In this photo Dave Heneise uses his fly rod while Paul Heneise fishes with spinning tackle.
We've had many fishermen bring their fly rods and the ones who stuck with it for awhile discovered pike are a great fish to catch on these limber sticks.
In fact, we once had a father and son who refused to fish in any other manner.
The key is to use streamer flies on a short wire leader.
Flies 3-4 inches in length seem to work well and ones with lead eyes that make them sink a little more rapidly seem to work even better.
We've also seen people use similar-size plastic squids with good success.
One problem with fly fishing for pike is that it takes a while to work each retrieve, so you often want to have a good idea you are into a mess of pike before cracking out the fly rod.
A lot of guys use their spinning rod until they catch a couple of fish in an area, then switch to the fly rod.
You can also just figure that some places are always going to have a concentration of fish: beaver houses, coves, rock piles, sandbars, weedbeds.
We had one fly fisher who nailed a big pike, I forget the exact size but it was in the mid to high 30+inches, on his fly rod right across the narrows from camp and we all got to witness the thrilling fight it put up before it was released.