Active pike fishing for dead fish

The article will be about that, how to search for pikes and actively catch them with a dead fish. When fishing for pike in running waters, it is worth using the current of the river. The float set is drowned slowly by the water, and the angler penetrates the fishery moving along the shore step by step. The greatest emphasis should be put on the aforementioned "step by step", because in the most interesting places the lure should "stop" as long as possible. Groping the "kilometers" of the river in the dark will not bring us the success we dream of.

Pike most often stand in places with a slower current (they are rarely seen in the swift current). They choose positions close to the shore, such as: water obstacles and breakdowns, and places that give them good shelter (aquatic vegetation, overgrown or washed river sides, etc.). In unregulated rivers such places are relatively easy to find by anglers. It is worse with regulated watercourses, but also in them all kinds of "irregularities" can be noticed and thanks to this it is possible to correctly select the hunting area of ​​pike. They are river spurs, shore faults similar to them, deep washes on bends, narrowing and extensions of the river course, reverse current episodes, tributary mouths, etc..

The whole art of pike fishing comes down to finding these places and, most importantly, skillfully catch them from different, possible sides. The lure must always "overtake" the angler. Pike - as we have already mentioned – lurking mostly near the shore, he might be "worried" seeing an angler above his head before a meal – which is completely possible with clean water – and may not want to meet him "eye to eye".

Simple set

The pike set is relatively simple. The float should have this buoyancy, to keep the dead fish close to the bottom in all the fished places when properly loaded. A narrow olive or a few large pellets is best suited for loading (good when they are of different sizes). In shallow rivers, of medium depth not exceeding the length of the rod, you can fish with a fixed float. However, I would advise you to use a floating float here as well, blocked with a stopwatch (or mat with pellets). The stopwatch is clamped on the line just below the float set on a suitable ground (drawing 1 ).

Drawing 1. „Trotting” – step by step search for the shore. In an interesting place, the bait should stay a little longer. 1. a stopwatch with a thread and a bead, 2. in-line float, 3. blocking pellet, 4. large lead pellets, 5. carabiner with a safety pin.

The in-line float allows us to fish also at greater depths. If a dead fish floats at a different speed than the float or you want to keep it longer in a promising place, then we set more ground than the depth of the fishery.
Clear plastic floats are best for use in clear water, like Drennan's "Piker" and "Zeppler". We arm the dead fish with two hooks. The final one is hammered into the side of the fish, and the other on the back of her head from above. Thanks to this, it will "swim” also when releasing it in front of you. At this point, I would like to draw your attention once again to the necessity to pierce the fish's swim bladder several times. Otherwise it will still be floating upside down in water.

Fishing with the wind

Pike can also be found in stagnant waters, fishing with a drifting rig. Underwater currents are used for this purpose (dam lakes) or the force of the wind. In the spring after spawning and in the summer, the pikes eagerly stand in shallow water on the border of the reed belt or on the banks well overgrown with aquatic vegetation.. In the colder months, they descend deeper and further from the shore. The method of fishing described here is only possible then, when such a fishery is chosen, where the wind will "push” a dead fish obliquely from the shore. Taking her back slowly will not scare her off” pikes.

In light winds or if you want, so that the lure will travel a considerable distance, the use of a float with a sail is very helpful”. Reaching a distance in this way 100 and there are more meters, with an adequate supply of line on the spool, trifle. The advantage of a float with a sail” its visibility is very good, even from a distance. It is only important to grease the line, which should float on the surface of the water. If she were sunk it, due to uncontrolled bulges, the jam would be almost impossible. For the same reason, for long distance fishing, strong is necessary, stiff stick.

A float with a sail should be so loaded with lead, to stand upright also in stronger winds and larger waves. It should not tilt when the angler is selecting the line (for better "contact" with the bait). The wind causes, that the floating float always turns on its axis. Therefore, it must be mounted like this, so that it does not get tangled with the line. In some float models the line runs from top to bottom along their entire length. In others, similar to the "Waggler" type, the line connects to the float only at the bottom, but through the carabiner. The latter method has the advantage, that the float does not interfere with the hook and haul.

For floats with a sail, the so-called. floats-pilots or small polystyrene balls. which are put on the line above the float. They keep the line afloat and indicate the exact direction of the drift. Factory loaded floats constitute a separate chapter. To keep a dead fish above the bottom (20-80 Cm) it is enough to use a lead ball or larger pellet with the mat. Middy's "Insert-Drifter" float is exceptionally universal, which can be equipped with a body or a sail of various sizes. It is loaded at the bottom. It can be connected by a carabiner with a line on the lower handle (just like the "Waggler" type) or at two points (top and bottom), the upper eye is only lightly connected to the spline and tears when jammed, not disturbing in the lobby (drawing 2).

Drawing 2 (on the left): float with a sail, attached like a "Waggler" type (on the left) or a normal in-line float („Insert Drifter” firmy Middy), 1+2. silicone tube, 3. additional lead "putting" the float, 4. stopwatch from a thread + bead, 5. float-pilot, 6. ear (upper) on a fishing line, 7. greased line, 8. stopper knot + the bead holds the float in front of the leader, 9. lead, 10. clip hook, 11. leader.

For drift fishing, dead fish are placed in a balanced way, that it moves as naturally as possible just above the bottom. A system with two hooks is perfect for this (one movable).

A carriage with a float

(Pulling the bait behind the boat, the so-called. cab, in Poland it is forbidden). In large water reservoirs, pikes occupy larger living spaces. Dutch specialists have developed an active method of catching pike in their waters – hauling a dead fish on a fishing rod with a float behind the boat. For this purpose, they use special floating floats with a side line guide. Normal in-line floats are not suitable for this method, because the constantly taut line "pulls" a dead fish up (except for the situation, when a very high lead load was used).
Floats with a lateral outer guide change their position only then, when the line is not tense, that is, when a dead fish falls with the weight to the appropriate depth. While pulling, the line is taut and these floats assume their maximum "draft".
Know the depth of the fishery well before you start fishing. The fishfinder is ideal for this – obviously not for pike hunting, but to determine the shape of the bottom. The famous Dutch pike hunter Jan Eggers is convinced, that these predators stand as deep as possible 7 m . For hauling the boat, the best depth is from 5 into 7 m. However, these observations are only true in the cold season. In summer, pike live much shallower. The lure pulled by the boat "runs" diagonally – that's why we place the float on a larger ground, than the actual depth of the fishery (drawing 3).

Drawing 3: When pulling the bait behind the boat, the float must be set deeper than the depth of the fishery due to the” lines diagonally.

The speed of the boat should not be too fast: late autumn 1,2-1,5 km/h; in the summer 1,5-2,0 km/h.
Depending on the size of the bait, towing depth and speed, a weight is placed over the metal leader
0 weight from 10 into 25 g. Dead fish are armed "head up". Hooklengths are suitable for this. The tip of the upper hook is passed through the fish's mouth, lower – it is placed on the side of the tail. A little tip to do your own towing rigs behind your boat: the upper hook is placed over the loop, passed through the restriction tube. Before starting fishing, the treble spacing is determined based on the size of the dead fish and the stop is tightened.

Dead fish as a wobbler

Each, who often catches dead fish from the bottom, he has already lived or will sooner or later experience such a situation: the lure lies at the bottom for hours and does not arouse the interest of predators, until here – suddenly taking, and at the moment, when we wanted to get her out of the water. The conclusions of this random observation were used to create a new method of fishing: the dead fish are slowly drawn back in the same way as a wobbler. The fish lying at the bottom is pulled up very slowly by 1-3 m to myself, then it is allowed to fall down and so on. In very shallow reservoirs you can fish like this completely without load. In deeper waters, to keep the fish at the bottom, only a few lead pellets are enough. Only in running water is it necessary to use a weight of a mass 20-30 g.
A fish is armed "upside down"; the upper hook is stuck in its mouth, and the bottom to the side of the fish. Our lure can be given a bit more life by slightly bending it while setting it up. For sure, that a dead fish will stay on the system for a long time. thread the free end of the metal leader of the upper hook through the muscles of the fish and pull it through its mouth. We do this with a bait needle, of course. The hooks are hammered as follows: the top to the back, a little behind the head, the lower side -in the base of the tail of the fish (drawing 4).

Drawing 4: arming dead fish to give confidence, that she won't break off that quickly when you pull her up.

Pulling up a dead fish, just like a wobbler, is a very good way of fishing, especially in unfamiliar water.
To fish actively or passively?
The more good ones you find, pike places, the greater the chances of catching these predators. Isn't that already a sufficient argument, speaks in favor of an active way of catching pike with dead fish? Friends, for which the measure of success is the number of fish caught, they will for sure agree with the above statement. Also in unknown reservoirs and in those with a large surface area, the dynamic method of catching a dead fish will produce a pike result much faster, than ongoing, sometimes for hours, Soaking the fish in one place. However, every angler, knowing the fishery and pike habitats, will have better results on a dead fish lying on the bottom than on a "pulled up" fish. After all, pikes do not feed well.

Necessary protection

Pike satisfy hunger during short feeding periods. An angler wandering over the water's edge, which will hit by chance at this moment, will experience an amazing experience, often at the first cast. Deliberate fishing of great pike specimens, however, necessarily requires a longer session by the water. The angler then waits with his lure for the short one, very promising, the moment of feeding. In England, large pikes are "sacred" and after being caught, they are released into the water every time. In Holland he turns his noses disapprovingly, when speaking of pike, their culinary usefulness is mainly seen. Thanks to this approach, pike live there completely "without problems". In Poland, these fish enjoy the opinion of unique pests for many, devouring recessed fry, waterfowl and "little children"… I guess, that it would have to be changed a long time ago, preferably in the English fashion.

The large pike is entirely responsible for the natural reproduction of the species (more precisely, it should be said – on females, for large individuals are all female). They should be protected and put back into the water. Their meat is not very tasty either (the best are pikes for 3 Kg). As for the trophy, it's an alternative to nice, pictures that everyone likes, there is the gaping and toothed head of a 10 kg pike, hung over the bed in the bedroom.

The need to protect large pikes is the most important argument, arguing for releasing them after being caught in the water. This should already be taken into account when landing a fish. The use of gaff definitely does the trick one way. If we want to release the pike, it should be taken with a landing net (There are even special soft mesh landing nets for this purpose, imported from England). There are such anglers, who laugh at this approach. They laugh as long as they do, until the fish of their life are lost to a landing net that is too small.

After taking it out of the water, it is advisable to gently unhook the fish. The pike is put an index finger under the gill cover (from the ventral side) and after a slight head lift, it will open its mouth voluntarily. It can now be easily released from the hook using long surgical tweezers. It is better to push the anchor deep in the mouth under the gill cover and cut the line.. It happens sometimes, that the pike swallowed the bait so deep, that the anchor is stuck in the esophagus or even at the beginning of the "gastric" sac. This does not mean a complete threat to his life. Drennan's Pike Disgorger will even get there. This is a special hook release, also having a tip that allows you to "push" back the "gastric" sac, if it has been drawn a little into the fish's gullet when unhooking it.

In more difficult cases, you should crush the burrs on the anchor. This can be done with the American Berkeley pliers or any pliers with long arms, for cutting (crushing) wire. Unhooking the fish will be much easier, if, as a rule, you fish with burr-free hooks. At this point, we are back at the very beginning of our series of articles about large pikes. The pike breaks not because of the lack of burrs on the treble, but because of a bad punch in the mouth or a wrong haul. Please take my word for it, that it really is.

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