How to Catch More Fish : Tackle and Tips


Author: Chris Chandran

I lost three good fish due to my tackle not being up to par and I must admit that the fault is all mines. The losses could be prevented if only you had taken a little extra time to check and care for your tackle beforehand. Here is some couple of tips that I hope will help you from losing fish and lures.

Before and after every trip be sure to double check all the lures that you intend to use. Replace the standard bronzed trebles and rings that most American lures come with. Use those of the stainless steel variety and make sure that they are of the same size, or the action of the lure is sure to be sharpening the new hooks and flatten the barbs before putting them on. If you practice “catch and release”, barbless hooks are a must. They do not adequate to more fish lost, just as long as you keep the line taut during the fight. They cause much less damage to the fish and facilitate a quicker release. Last but not least, they are also safer for fisherman as accidents do happen.

A tackle back or similar lure retriever is worth its weight I lures. Save a lure and you get your money back (especially at today’s prices). Be sure though to use a snap with a swivel or the retriever will not be able to grip the lure. I must say that using a snap and swivel will affect the action of the lure and some might prefer to stick with a loop knot to retain the lures’ action. I guess it may be a question of more bites or more lures?

I was using Spiderwire Braid which the new types of line that make nylon feel as sensitive. Due to their low stretch, sensitivity is probably quadrupled; used in conjunction with a graphite rod, you could feel that lure fouling on rubbish or even a single leaf while trolling. All this results in more productive time spent on the water. Their fine diameter relative to their breaking strength means that finer lines can be used. Thus lure dive just a little bit deeper and more line can be spooled onto the reel than before.

We found our most productive lures to be Halco Sorcerers (or Scorpions as they are called in Australia) and Mann’s 10+. The Sorcerer was great for casting with a twitch, crank and twitch retrieve proving deadly on Jacks. The Mann’s meanwhile proved to be more productive on the troll as it got down deeper and was bumping the snags more often. However I have to admit that the largest fish of the trip was caught while trolling a Sorcerer quite a way off the bottom. Later we found out that there was an old tree that had fallen into the river at the spot and managed to catch a couple more fish from it.
Most importantly make sure that your reel has a smooth drag. A jerky, bumpy drag may result in straightened or pulled hooks and even a bust-off in an extreme case. Our Shimano Calcutta’s for example utilize a dry drag-washer system. A quick reel service beforehand to remove grease, gunk and oil from the washers is recommended.

The ability to cast a lure within six inches of a target again and again will result in a higher strike rate. The fact that I wasn’t getting my lure right into the mangrove roots by a ratio of three to one. Practice casting and it will result in more strikes and less lures in trees; that is one lesson I learned the hard way.

Article resources: “Rod and Line Magazine September 2000”

Others recommended tips to catch more fish :

Catch More Fish!



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