Driftless Trout Anglers

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Life of Riley  
#1 Posted : Monday, September 10, 2018 5:00:09 PM(UTC)
Life of Riley
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I don't know if I'll ever do it, but figured I'd ask just because I'm curious. What is the best hook for worm fishing and how do you rig the worm? I fish a lot of bass and walleye, but never really use any live bait. One reason why I'm remiss to try it is the increased potential to kill fish. I imagine many of them are gut hooked? I'm not sure how I feel about cutting the line and releasing a fish with a worm in his gullet. I've heard different opinions on whether or not a fishes stomach acid really dissolves a metal hook. Thanks for any general info/observations/opinions.

Riley
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Pete  
#2 Posted : Monday, September 10, 2018 6:15:32 PM(UTC)
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Not a bait fisherman, so I won't claim to be an expert. Does anyone use circle hooks for live-bait trout fishing? They're supposedly fool-proof: tighten the line rather than setting the hook and the hook winds up in the corner of the mouth; no gut-hooking at all.

I'd encourage everyone to not use salt water (corrosion-resistant) hooks whenever possible. Where it's been examined, in bonefish, using salt water hooks has resulted in mortality after a break-off. Not from the effects of being deeply hooked; rather from cadmium toxicity, the anti-corrosive used in some salt water hooks.

I think Mark, the site owner, has discussed mortality in live bait fishing in the past. If I remember, there is a big difference between active fishing-drifting a worm-versus tight lining on the bottom; the latter results in much deeper hooking of the fish. Hopefully Mark sees this thread and weighs in.
weiliwen  
#3 Posted : Monday, September 10, 2018 7:54:19 PM(UTC)
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My mom was the world's best worm fisher. She used #12 Eagle Claw worm hooks, with the barb crimped - not for the fish's sake, but because she felt the worm was easier to thread onto the hook. She never used more than about 3/4" of worm. She had a very light touch, and almost always lip-hooked the trout. She'd spend 3 hours on the stream and end up using about 2 worms total. One or two of the smallest sized pinch-on sinkers about 6 inches above the hook and that was all she needed.
Bob Williams, "Weiliwen"
Buckman  
#4 Posted : Monday, September 10, 2018 8:06:03 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: weiliwen Go to Quoted Post
My mom was the world's best worm fisher. She used #12 Eagle Claw worm hooks, with the barb crimped - not for the fish's sake, but because she felt the worm was easier to thread onto the hook. She never used more than about 3/4" of worm. She had a very light touch, and almost always lip-hooked the trout. She'd spend 3 hours on the stream and end up using about 2 worms total. One or two of the smallest sized pinch-on sinkers about 6 inches above the hook and that was all she needed.


Sounds like your mom was spot on. Some of the best trout anglers I know use this method, or use small wax worms and the like. I mainly swapped out to artificial lures and fly fishing back in the 90's when I lived in CO to get access to all the water out there like the Fryingpan and such. Once in a great while if I am getting blanked on lures or it is too choked up, I will use this method with a san juan worm and spin rod combo with a small pinch weight with pretty good results at times.
NBrevitz  
#5 Posted : Tuesday, September 11, 2018 12:22:12 AM(UTC)
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I stopped worm fishing after I really started targeting trophies. I don’t want to kill anything giant. That said, working a worm (not a crawler) actively and setting the hook quickly with #8-10 long shank hooks will result in lip hooked fish at least 95% of the time. Plunking will kill tons of fish no matter how carefully you do it.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
Gurth  
#6 Posted : Tuesday, September 11, 2018 1:32:09 PM(UTC)
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I don't fish live bait unless I'm fishing for food – walleyes or crappies.

Even then, I'll usually start with artificial.

With species I'm not gonna eat (bass, trout, northerns, musky, etc), if I can't get them with lures and "skill," RollEyes Laugh I'd rather get skunked.


YMMV



.

Edited by user Tuesday, September 11, 2018 11:01:23 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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thanks 1 user thanked Gurth for this useful post.
weiliwen on 9/11/2018(UTC)
weiliwen  
#7 Posted : Tuesday, September 11, 2018 4:03:49 PM(UTC)
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Yeah, it seems to me that most on this forum are capable enough with fly or spinner to not need bait at all.
Bob Williams, "Weiliwen"
NBrevitz  
#8 Posted : Tuesday, September 11, 2018 7:04:01 PM(UTC)
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Another thing... If you’re focusing on just trophies, spinners are a better way to go just in terms of covering water and seeing more fish.
"I fish because I love to: Because only in the woods can I find solitude without loneliness."
Noctilio  
#9 Posted : Thursday, September 13, 2018 2:00:46 AM(UTC)
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I don’t normally fish bait for trout but when ice fishing for warm water species I like to use circle hooks. They work well but the one thing I want to point out is that off set circle hooks defeat the point of the circle hook. The off set point can cause gut hooks. If you want to try a circle hook I recommend in-line circle hooks. They are harder to find but probably cause less fish mortality
big_river_bum  
#10 Posted : Thursday, September 13, 2018 6:22:10 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: NBrevitz Go to Quoted Post
Another thing... If you’re focusing on just trophies, spinners are a better way to go just in terms of covering water and seeing more fish.




what if you already know where the trophy is?
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