My top tac­tics for lakes of all shapes and sizes

Pin­point­ing pike Big wa­ters by boat

Anglers Mail - - Pike -

LAKES come in all shapes and sizes. They can range from a one-acre hole in the ground (one I know of pro­duced a 31 lb pike) to the big ones such as Lake Win­der­mere, in Cum­bria, and the Lake of Men­teith, in Scot­land. Though all lakes are dif­fer­ent, cer­tain key fac­tors come into play on all of them.

Th­ese days, ac­cess is prob­a­bly the most im­por­tant fac­tor: if pike fish­ing is very re­stricted on a lake, then the fish­ing is likely to be bet­ter than some­where that is, in ef­fect, a free-for-all.

Lakes with im­posed pike close sea­sons gen­er­ally make for bet­ter fish­ing, be­cause even the hum­ble pike can learn not to take lures or baits as read­ily as they might do. All-year­round pres­sure can make pike fish­ing very hard. Watercraft, as al­ways, plays its part. Pike in most lakes re­spond to the sea­sons, and in the colder months, when prey fish con­cen­trate in deeper ar­eas, pike will al­ways fol­low them.

Though not al­ways right in the mid­dle of their prey, pike will usu­ally be nearby. A dam wall of a lake can be a dead cert in the depth of win­ter, but big con­cen­tra­tions of small fish can make pike picky. Some­times the only way that you can catch fish is with a live­bait, which is a bit of a nui­sance, be­cause catch­ing bait takes up valu­able pike fish­ing time!

As spring ap­proaches, you can get an amaz­ing tran­si­tion. On one lake that I fished in the 1970s, the big­ger pike were found off the dam in win­ter, but as soon as mid-Fe­bru­ary ar­rived, they moved to the shal­low end of the lake, turf­ing all the jacks out to the dam end! It helps to un­der­stand things like this, be­cause you won’t catch pike if they are at the op­po­site end of the lake. The re­ally big lakes, such as Men­teith and Win­der­mere, are best fished from a boat. Un­for­tu­nately, hire boats are of­ten rather cramped and small, and on some wa­ters they

■ Search­ing the shal­lows: pre-spawn pike will start to move to shal­low ar­eas in mid-Fe­bru­ary to March.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.