Summer Smiles, Grad Gifts, and Great Giveaways
- May 31, 2023
With fishing season now pretty much in full swing, I’ve been trying to look at various lures and some different approaches to successful fishing outings. This past week, we analyzed the attributes of the various metal spinners available to fishermen, but in this week’s piece, I want to take a closer look at spoons. To
With fishing season now pretty much in full swing, I’ve been trying to look at various lures and some different approaches to successful fishing outings. This past week, we analyzed the attributes of the various metal spinners available to fishermen, but in this week’s piece, I want to take a closer look at spoons. To the nonfisherman, a spoon is a device used to transport peanut butter ice cream from dish to mouth several times a week — at least that’s what it is to me — but it’s also a very functional fishing lure to have in one’s tackle box.
Basically, a spoon is a simple metal lure often with a concave surface that causes the lure to wobble when retrieved. It’s pretty much shaped like the spoon next to your dinner plate, only without the handle. Years ago, the metal spoon was a mainstay for fishermen, partly because it was one of just a few lure types available to fishermen. Today, there are so many lure choices, and types of designs and materials, that the simple spoon has mostly faded from sight. The spoon is seeing a bit of a comeback, and rightfully so since it certainly has its place in the realm of fishing.
The spoon is actually a very versatile lure. For starters, it can be fished at almost any depth even on or near the surface. The metal lure is relatively easy to cast, and several basic retrieves work well. A simple steady retrieve or a stop and go approach often get results, but the spoon can also be vertically jigged with great success. A spoon is also an excellent choice for trolling behind the boat for any number of species.
Today, spoons come in all sizes and can be used to target almost any fish species, and their often-shiny metal finish helps them stand out even in less than clear water. There was a time when a spoon was used pretty much for big toothy fish like pike, muskies, walleyes, and even bass, but today there are designs that catch trout, and even panfish like crappies.
Basically, spoons come in three types: the standard concave spoon, the trolling spoon, and a weedless spoon. Trolling spoons are thinner and lighter and do not cast as well as the standard spoon thus they are better for trolling situations. A weedless spoon has the added feature of a metal protrusion that protects the hook from snagging.
Over the years I have fished a lot of Canadian lakes and the St. Lawrence River, and one of my most successful lures was the excellent old spoon — more specifically, a red and white Daredevil or a Red Eye Wiggler. Most often I would cast the lure and then count it down to the desired depth before I started my retrieve. Once I started hitting fish, I would try to count it down to the same depth each cast. I also found that sometimes adding a four to six inch length of plastic worm (usually black) to the treble hook sometimes brought more strikes.
Earlier I mentioned that spoons could even be fished near the surface and even “on” the surface. We hardly think of metal as something that we could fish on the water’s surface, but it can be done. One of my most successful ways of taking bass out of heavy surface weeds, with occasional breaks, was to cast a weedless Johnson Silver Spoon and then quickly begin my retrieve while holding my rod tip high and more upright. By adding a plastic worm shoved onto the weedguard and then the hook the spoon was next to impossible to hang up in the weeds. It wobbled just fine over the surface of the weeds drawing strikes from ambushing bass and pike.
Make sure you have some spoons in that tackle box and don’t forget to stock up on peanut butter ice cream.
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