Trout Fishing Bait

Information on different types of bait including live bait, synthetic bait and old fashioned baits that still work.

Natural Trout Fishing Bait

Trout fish and salmon have a highly developed sense of smell, more so than most other game fish. It is understandable why natural bait would appeal to them. The can detect dissolved substances in small amounts. They not only use this sense of smell to find their way home to spawn, they use it to find food.

Natural bait fishing will out produce fishing with flies early in the season when the water is cold and there are not very many insects available. In streams where there are not many insects, natural bait works very well. In a heavily fished stream, the large trout are very wary and anything out of the ordinary will be passed by. If they are feeding on natural bait, they will stay clear of imitations. Its not that they know they are imitations, its just that when they can smell the food, they will usually ignore the fake flies. Scent a powerful thing.

When Not to use Live Bait

Don’t use live bait if you plan on releasing your trout. Even a small trout will swallow the bait deeply so that it is impossible to remove the hook without causing injury. Don’t make the mistake of using the wrong tackle when fishing trout with live bait. Large hooks and bobbers might work with other fish but it won’t do well in hooking a trout.

Any trout will take a worm. There is an endless variety of live bait for trout fishing and some of them being worms, salmon eggs, leeches, crayfish, crickets, minnows, nightcrawlers and larval insects. But bait fishing does not have to be live bait. You can use cheese, marshmallows, corn, and other grocery bait.

If you run out of bait you can just look around for it by turning over some rocks. In the late summer trout are often found near the bank waiting for grasshoppers to get blown into the water. If you have a net you can round up plenty of grasshoppers for bait. The advantage of grasshoppers are that you can use the dead or alive.

Crayfish can be found in the stream bed under rocks. If you can, try to get them when their shells are soft. Hook the crayfish through the tail from the bottom up. If you are out to catch a trophy trout is crayfish live crayfish rigged on a set of size 8 gang hooks is a hard bait to beat.

Many options are available to trout fishermen who are using live bait. Nightcrawlers are a fail safe when it comes to fishing for trout. They work on several levels including the fact that they are easy to get and they are the right weight for the long cast. Although using live worms can sometimes be too small or hard to cast, many trout fishermen like to use them.

Hellgrammites and water worms also known as insect larva also work well for trout fishing. But, they can be harder to find as the summer goes on. Also, they can be a little hard to work with if you are casting distance. Small minnows make good bait for trout fish especially early in the season when the fish are a little sluggish. Some more experienced trout fishermen like to use a chunk of chub or sucker meat when they are planning on trying to catch a large trout.

Trout fishermen can also explore the world of using synthetic bait. Synthetic bait is man made and comes in a large array of colors, patterns and styles. For some unexplained reason, hatchery trout are extremely attracted to synthetic bait. It is the choice to use if you are going to be still fishing in a lake that is stocked with trout. In many cases, they will do better then live bait. When it comes to synthetic bait, experimentation is the key. You may have to try a couple of different colors, etc. in order to have some success with the trout.

In the past when fishing typically consisted of going out and digging to find worms, there were a couple of traditional baits that seemed to work every time. A couple of these “old fashioned” baits were corn and cheese. Cheese in particular works very well with hatchery trout as well. You can rig a piece of cheese on a set of pre tied gang hooks and use it as bait when fishing in still fishing.

Depending on what kind of bait you are successful with it is not uncommon for trout fishermen to go through several different types of bait during one fishing excursion. You might be successful with one thing one day and another type of bait another day. They bottom line is that sometimes it is very hard to predict what trout fish are going to be attracted to. Try giving them a little of your own lunch and maybe you will be having them for your lunch.