Lots of fisherman turn to other fish species due to warm water during the summer months. However, catching summertime trout is easier than it seems. This how-to article gives tips for locating and catching summer trout.

Locating Summer Trout

The most important part of fishing is locating fish. Warm summer water temps drive trout into cold natural springs, tail waters, or head waters. Trout are sensitive to water temperature and seek out cooler well oxygenated water that the pre-mentioned waters provide. Cold water springs flowing into mountain streams are excellent for holding summertime trout. In tail waters trout school up next to the spillway where the coolest and most oxygenated water flows. Head water of streams fish will hold near the bottom of shaded deeper structured (wood, rocks, ledges) pockets. Check water flows , discharge times, and weather before going fishing.

Fishing Technique

Presentation is key for catching educated summer trout. The Freaky Worms tail is designed to trigger trouts aggression to strike. The action of the tail is key, which the fisherman controls with a fine jigging cadence (twitching the rod up and down). Before fishing the freaky worm jig it in the water and watch for tail, jig the worm with a fine cadence so that the tail wiggles without jerking the worm up and down. Controlled depth fishing (CDF) is a technique that trout just can't resist. For best results with CDF use a one inch cigar or pear float with a 1/32 ounce jig head. Fish CDF with a leader deep enough that the worm is just up off the stream bottom. Cast the float and worm into the current up stream and allow the jig head to sink before starting the fine jigging cadence. Most strikes will come from working the worm between the fast and slower water (in the current line). Another technique is to use small split shots one to two foot up from a small straight or wacky hooked Freaky Worm. Fish the split shot technique slower by twitching the rig along the bottom. CDF and split shoting techniques are effective for catching trout year around. If fish are being finicky use Freaky Franks trout sauce to entice them into biting.

Summary

Summer time is a great opportunity to catch trout. Do not give up on trout due to warm water or stock truck not running (some states stock in the summer)-get out and fish because streams and tail waters still hold catch-able fish. Do some research and find locations where cool water runs into a stream or find a spillway of tail waters that releases water from the bottom of a lake. Next, employ CDF or split shot technique with a Freaky Worm and start catching fish. Take time to enjoy the scenery and until the next blog- tight lines.


Many fisherman today purchase fancy depth finders but are unsure how to use the electronic's features to identify fish. Most of your run of the mill fish finders are used for locating brush, drop-offs, channels, or displaying the current water temperature. One thing that a lot of anglers are beginning to realize is that these new depth finders can locate schools of fish with extreme accuracy. Locating suspended crappie in open water is difficult for fisherman to master, however with the aid of electronics finding these fish can be achieved and catching them is very rewarding.

Location

Location is key for starting a summer crappie search. It is important to do homework on a lake because crappie hot spots will vary lake to lake. To begin a search, inquire some information about the lake (lake map or online maps), this will eliminate hours of blind trolling around the lake looking for schools of fish on the depth finder. If the lake is shallow with a few deeper pockets, then those are the spots to start locating crappie and fishing the Freaky Franks Worm. The task of finding these suspended fish becomes more difficult with a reservoir style lake, where the lake is basically one big hole. In reservoirs start searching near points at the mouths of coves. Not every lake will have crappie suspended off shallow ledges leading into an old creek channel. Mark prime locations (humps, ledges, channels, drop offs) on a GPS or map. Electronics are a valuable tool in locating structure, bait fish, and crappie.

Electronics

Understanding whats on the screen is key to locating bait fish, game fish, and structure. In the picture to the right, there are arch shapes that indicate fish. The fish are suspended out towards what appears to be a channel. Depend-ing on how tightly together the arches are packed, one can assume that this is a school of crappie. As you can see, on the bottom center of the screen, this person has their depth finder set to 200 kilohertz. That is about the perfect setting for 50 foot of water as shown in the top left corner. Upon reaching shallower water, turn that setting up. I recommend 455 kilohertz in shallow water because at that frequency, one can pick up a more in-depth picture. While running a trolling depth finder at a high frequency, then set the console depth finder to a lower setting; by doing this the electronics provides a quality view of the bottom without the surface disturbance from the boat. There's one draw-down to running electronics at a low frequency is that schools of fish might be missed on the screen, therefore turn the sensitivity setting up until the images on the screen can be interpreted.

Choosing a depth finder is a tough decision. For someone just getting into electronics, I would recommend starting on the lower end of the fish finder cost scale. It is not necessary to purchase a high dollar depth finder just because of a pro’s endorsement. Build confidence and experience before beginning a search for a customizable depth finder.

Fishing Techniques

Once crappie are located then a great way to catch summer crappie using electronics is “spider rigging”. This type of fishing deploys multiple crappie rods out in front of the boat while slowly trolling or drifting. There isn't one specific way to do this and everyone has their own techniques. A proven spider rig technique is to run two jigs per pole, one tied two feet below the other. For the top jig use a 1/32 oz Slab Slammer and on the bottom use a 1/16 oz jig head with a Freaky Worm. For days when the bite is super slow, then tip both jigs with a minnow and continue making adjustments from there. It is best to keep rod tips about one meter apart and lower the very tip of the rod until about three inches from the water, this gives more control. I recommend using six-pound test high visibility line with 10 foot rods. Most of the rigging I do is in water deeper than ten feet on pinch points with plenty of natural bait in the area. Spider rigging bridges in the summer is an effective technique because bridges offer both structure and shade for the fish to feed.

Freaky Frank's Freaky Worm is a must have bait for crappie fishing. The weighted tail design gives the worm action that will trigger their aggression! The tail produces a natural movement that makes them easy to fish with a spider rig.This worm works well vertically jigged, worked under a cork, or trolled with a spider rig. Crappie just can't resist the freaky worm!

I would enjoy hearing tricks and techniques used with spider rigging, so feel free to email me at jettlappin@aol.com.

Catching 100 trout in a day is easier than it seems. Fisherman set goals, some goals are catching a brood trout, a limit, or the cycle (Brooke, Brown, Rainbow, Golden trout). Catching one hundred trout in day is a lofty goal that can be met through planning, strategizing, and capitalize on opportunities.

Planning

The most important part is selecting the correct location. Fish a stream or lake that is stocked with a large number of fish and within a few days after stocking. The weather is another key factor. A light rain, light chop on the water, or a warm sunny spring day are all prime. The time of year is important because the water temperature is a primary trout biting factor. Colder water temps the trout will bite better mid day and afternoon; smoke hole white, summit blue, and boom boom pink are good colors. Warmer temps trout will bite best early and late in the day; colors to start with are buffalo orange, pond fork or corn yellow, and boom boom pink. Fishing equipment makes a big difference. Fish a ML 9 foot rod with a quality fluorocarbon 4 lb test or 2 lb test line. Once a plan is created its time to create a strategy.

Strategy

A successful day starts with a game plan. When the water is cold trout are going to be deep, therefor fish close to the bottom in the deeper portions of a hole. Use a slip float or traditional cast and retrieve with the freaky worm. It's the weighted tail of the freaky worm that generates the action fish just can't resist. Jig the worm so that the tail moves with a fine action, jerking the worm up and down does not look natural. For warm water use a float, jig the worm just off the bottom in a stream or 3-5 foot leader for lakes. Improvise and change strategies as the day unfolds, change up colors, fishing depth, speed of jig, and locations until the school is found and large numbers are being caught.

Capitalizing

When trout bite a fisherman has to capitalize on every opportunity. Once a school is located cast in the same spot and focus on catching every bite. Do not set the hook to hard, it is easy to get excited and rip the hook out. It is recommended to retie after several fish or catching a brood trout. Take time to release fish unharmed so that other fisherman can enjoy the resource. A push button counter is recommend to keep track of numbers. The counter allows one to focus more on fishing and not keep track.

In summary, catching 100 trout can be done with planning, strategy, the freaky worm, and luck. Experience fishing the location exponentially increases ones odds of catching large numbers of trout. Fishing the correct technique/ worm color for the time of year, water temp, and weather conditions is essential for success. Focus on the float or jigging the worm to capitalize on every bite. Following these steps and executing a game plan will turn catching 100 trout in a day into a reality.

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