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Fishing for northern pike is very popular in the parts of the world where they are found, and it’s easy to see why. They are very aggressive and attack lures with a furious and explosive strike and do so often. So what are the best lures for pike in spring?
There is a wide variety of lures on the market dedicated to catching pike, and in this post, we are going to take a look at some of the best pike lures on the market to help you hook into a big, toothy, and mean water wolf.
In a Hurry? Here’s Our Top Picks…
One of the most famous swimbaits to come out in recent memory, the Svartzonker McPike made some serious waves when it first started hitting the water in Sweden. It is responsible for many pike fishing tournaments being won and has caught some seriously impressive trophy pike.
The Mcpike has a larger-sized paddle tail compared to many other swimbaits on the market, with a thin and segmented tail to allow an easy tail kick when retrieved at slow or fast speeds.
The McPike also allows for multiple rigging options, run it with a shallow screw setup, a large jig head rig for fishing deeper water, and add stinger hooks if needed.
The Lipster is a great hard-bodied swimbait for pike, and like any product created by Savage Gear, you can expect it to be a high-quality product that will perform flawlessly.
The 3D Lipster lure was 3D scanned from a real roach, and the practice of scanning real fish is a process that Savage Gear has pioneered in the industry. The realism in this lure is hard to beat, and fish can’t distinguish the fakes from the real thing.
It has been designed to be used with a stop and go retrieve, but straight retrieves work very well in my experience as well.
The stop and go method is perfect for catching pike because pike have a tendency to follow, and at times a sudden pause that stops the lure right in the pikes’ face is all that is needed to cause a vicious reaction strike.
You can even use the bait for trolling, and when trolled at slow to medium speeds, the lure has a deadly swing to the sides and a roll that will drive the big pike wild.
The Bionic Bucktail by Northland Tackle is a favorite of many pike and musky anglers, including myself. It forgoes any fancy gimmick designs found on many lures and instead sticks to a basic but highly functional design. In other words, it flat-out catches fish.
The bionic bucktail incorporated a “deep Vee” design that keeps the bait running straight and true and makes it essentially snag-proof while being able to traverse the thickest of fish-holding cover like weed beds and heavy timber.
It comes with a fully dressed and premium bucktail hair design with a small amount of flashabou thrown in for added attraction and tandem willow and colorado blades for the perfect combinations of flash and vibration to get the pikes’ lateral line into overdrive.
Mepps has been producing quality lures since the 1960s, and the brand has become one of the most recognized brands in fishing for any species.
Mepps spinners like the Aglia have probably caught more fish than any other fishing lure in the world, and the #5 aglia is a perfect spinner for pike.
The aglia comes in a plethora of colors, and you will find a color pattern to suit any water clarity or weather condition. Aglia spinners are also available in naked versions without bucktails on them as well, and both will put fish in the boat.
There are also aglia versions that have been modernized. With the advent of double-bladed bucktails in the musky fishing world, and the effectiveness of the design, Mepps has started to produce the aglia with double french blades, and they are deadly for working just below the surface over heavy weed cover and other areas where pike hunt.
The red-eyed wiggler is a classic pike lure that has an amazing track record and history. It has been the bane or the northern pike since 1929. Any lure that has been on the market for nearly a century and is still producing fish is something not many lure producers can match.
The Red-eyed wiggler swings, rolls, and wiggles to produce a fish fleeing action with an insane amount of chrome flash, and the two bright red eyes seal the deal for any following pike.
The Red-eyed wiggler works especially well in clear water when using the all-chrome variant. Unlike other spoons on the market, the red-eyed wiggler has a double hook in the front and a treble in the rear to greatly increase your hooking percentage, resulting in fewer fish lost.
The wiggler is now also available in 6 different sizes and 20 different hand-painted colors, so your sure to find a few to suit your pike fishing needs.
You would probably have difficulty finding a pike fisherman without a Rapala lure of some sort in their tackle box. Heck, an angler of any species for that matter, and the Rapala super shad rap should be in every pike aficionados’ line-up.
The super shad rap is constructed from a material that is synonymous with Rapala harkening to the start of the brand’s history which starts in 1936, Balsa wood.
Balsa wood makes the super shad rap incredibly buoyant with a great shimmy on the rise, which will drive pike bonkers.
Even though it is constructed of a super light type of wood, the super shad rap can take a serious beating and has been designed with high-quality components to handle the stress given to it from hard fighting species like tarpon, musky, Nile perch, striped bass, and pike.
It’s great for trolling and has an enticing swimming action that works at virtually any speed without succumbing to blow-outs like other crankbaits, and there are some seriously appetizing color patterns to choose from.
Pike Fishing Tips
So you got your killer pike lures, and you are heading for the water. If you are new to pike angling or even an avid pike angler, we have some tips to help you catch more of them.
The Throw-back Tactic
Many times you will see a pike follow or swipe at a lure near the boat, or maybe you saw a pike swing and miss as you cranked your lure past a stump or other piece of fishing holding structure.
Don’t give up on these fish right away. In fact, keep throwing your lure at that stump, it is most likely still there, and if you present your lure to it enough times, it might strike it out of sheer annoyance. Tying on a different lure or a different color is also a great thing to do in a throwback situation, and minnow baits along with swimbaits would be a great choice in this situation.
Straight Wire Leaders
If your using jerkbaits, glide baits, or crankbaits that excel at twitching and have erratic presentations, have a rod designated for using these baits with a stiff straight wire leader attached. I recommend a straight wire leader with no barrel swivel or clip to attach the lure, and instead, use only a split ring for lure attachment for the best results.
Author Note: The flexibility of standard flexible leaders will actually negate the full potential in terms of action with these types of lures, as much of the energy gets transfer to flexing the leader instead of getting transferred to the lure.
When using a stiff straight wire leader, you remove the flex and give the bait a single and defined pivoting axis where the lure is connected to a split ring. This allows you to get the full potential action on these sorts of lures.
Need For Speed
This tactic is another great way to get a following pike to smash your lure harder than you smash your alarm clock on a Monday morning.
Steady straight retrieves with no speed variation work fine in many cases, but on every cast, as your lure gets about halfway to you, add a sudden burst of speed to your lure.
Your imparted speed burst only needs to be a few cranks of your reel, 3 of 5 cranks will do, and then settle back into your moderate or slower retrieve speed, that is, if a pike doesn’t hammer your lure.
This speed burst will trigger the reaction button in a pike’s brain, and the attempted fleeing lure will get crushed in many cases and lead to more fish.
Pike are awesome, and they are usually more than willing to eat a lure. The lures listed in this article are some of the absolute favorites that have caught me more pike than I will ever be able to count.
They will undoubtedly catch pike for you too, and if you throw in some of the tactics I shared in this article, you will be the bane of the pike on your local water.