Set of plastic fishing baits shot on white with smooth shadows

While lure fishing has been around for over 100 years, it’s popularity has grown tremendously within the last decade. So much so that most new fishermen starting out today will be recommended to begin with lures unless they are specifically out targeting larger ocean and bay species.

There are a few reasons for this, lure fishing is a lot more active than bait fishing, and while bait fishing is still the most common type of fishing, using bait often doesn’t involve a lot of effort except for time. Lures, on the other hand, keep the fisherman active, as you have to continually cast and retrieve the lure to keep it visible to potential target fish. If you are fishing a lake, you will also need to keep on the move, so you can find an area where your target fish are present.

One possible downside to this, is that a lot of lures have been put on the market which seems to be solely based around attracting new buyers, more than they are being sold to actually catch fish. The last decade has seen the lure market explode, with thousands of lures now available. This can make lure choice difficult to the newcomer, especially if you compare the range now to what was available 40 years ago, back then a common style of around 50 lures were about the maximum a store would carry, now it is often in the hundreds.

Unfortunately, with this explosion in range, most people solely rely upon the fishing store workers to recommend lures, while many of these people are still very knowledgeable, there can be a problem when it comes to reliable information versus potential sales margins. Not only this, but those who work in a fishing store most of the time do not solely use their own personal experience when making recommendations, usually the information is second hand, and while almost all fishing store owners and workers are very well-meaning, there are times when this isn’t always ideal.

Starting off with lures

If you are looking, to begin with lure fishing using hard body lures, which are small, usually fish shaped, solid or hollow plastic lures with a ‘bib’ or ‘lip’ at the front to cause the lure to dive into the water as it is retrieved, you will need some basic ground rules to prevent yourself spending a fortune straight up.

Start off with the lower priced lures, often there is no need to focus on lures which look the most realistic, in short there is 2 reasons for this, first a natural looking lure which resembles a real fish colour and pattern will often go unnoticed to many target fish, as the colours of wild fish in existence today have often gone through thousands of years of evolution to achieve their look, which prevents predators from easily spotting and catching them.

Lures which feature colours or patterns which are different to the actual bait fish in the area can often be the best way to go. Secondly another thing to consider is when light penetrates mineral rich waters and hits the lure, the light refracts very differently to what we see in the open air. The predator fish is often looking for a few visual clues, in clearer waters, they will usually be presented with a blue upper colour and a white, green or yellow underneath.

This is because light penetrating directly at the top of the water will often produce a bright to dark blue, while the light which refracts to the lower section are often of a colour that is either white, green or orange / yellow. These lower colours occurs due to the light hitting the bottom of the fish on an angle, rather than direct from the top. Some also have something called tetrachromacy, meaning in short, they are potentially able to view up to 100 million colours compared to our 1 million.

This in itself throws lure designs into a completely new light, as it can almost never be known what the fish will be interpreting, or what the preferred style will be. From what has just been roughly explained, the key is to consider there is no such thing as the one “perfect” lure, far too many variables take place which not even heavy investment in science can perfect, if science could solve this, considering the large income being generated from lures over the last 40 years, these perfect lures would have already been designed by now.

Unfortunately, they don’t exist, and we need to use our own methods for determining lure effectiveness, which comes down mostly to experience. The main idea to keep in mind when starting out is don’t be afraid to try out many lures until you find your personal preference at this early stage in time, as you progress, you will learn which lures perform best in which conditions, and will also note the type of fish you commonly catch on certain variations. Especially at first  where loosing lures can be somewhat common, don’t spend a fortune initially to get going, or you may leave yourself disappointed due to over expectations.

There are a few basic steps you will need to take before you are confident in avoiding snags, and therefore ready to increase your spending on different lures. When using a diving hard body lure, it’s important to know that this lure style is made to imitate a distressed fish, the rear of these lures often wobble heavily, and they dart slightly upward and downwards while being retrieved, these are common traits of a fish which has sensed danger, they will put all their effort into escaping (hence the strong rear wobble) and in doing so will not pay too much attention to their depth (hence the darting a little higher and lower instead of a constant straight line).

This action places vibrations and sounds into the water which will often attract predator fish, if they are looking for a feed that is. The issues with lures is often that if a fish is not hungry, a lure will not regularly entice it to feed. This is the opposite of bait fishing, bait fishing aims to tempt fish which may not be particularly hungry, into taking an easy source of food it has stumbled across in it’s travels, bait fishing will also often tempt hungry fish which are not in a strong feeding mode.

When fish are in feeding mode however, they are not scavenging food as often as they are looking for smaller fish to attack, here the lures come into their own, and don’t think you are limited to using only hard body lures, which take some time to master, another good way to start with lures is often to use soft plastic lures. In the next article, we will look at the common soft plastic grub style lures. Frostlure fishingflicking for fish,lure fishingWhile lure fishing has been around for over 100 years, it’s popularity has grown tremendously within the last decade. So much so that most new fishermen starting out today will be recommended to begin with lures unless they are specifically out targeting larger ocean and bay species. There are a few... Building a web of professional fly fishing techniques,product reviews , and a community of loved recreational fishing.