Last month I wrote about how to fish my Surface Pikes…now it’s time to learn more about my Diving Pikes. Divers are perhaps my biggest contribution to the fishing community because the bigger fish tend to stay deeper and you need to get down to them if you want to cash in.
5th Annual Plug Giveaway Winner
Before we go there, however, congratulations to Marc Hall of New Jersey – the winner of BigWaterLure’s 5th Annual Plug Giveaway. Marc chose a SLIM Medium Diver in White Scale…a good choice and we look forward to photos of his ‘big catch’ in our BWL Action Photo Gallery.
How to Fish BWL Diving Pikes
Through a combination of different woods and weights, I’ve created Medium and Deep Divers in SLIM and Giant Pike styles. I am often asked how deep these plugs will go. With the majority of my fishing done at night, it’s difficult to say. However, I have never failed to hit bottom with my Deep Diver (in either SLIM or Giant) whether fishing from shore or from a far out rock. One client trolled the Medium and Deep Diver Giants in 15 ft. of water at 3 mph and they both bottomed out. That is pretty impressive considering that all BWL Divers float at rest.
To fish the bottom in deep water, cast your Deep Diver and then reel very quickly, causing the plug to swim right down. When you feel it hit bottom, let it float up a bit and start a slow retrieve. The plug will swim at the depth it is at. If you bump into something, pause, let the plug float up, and continue your retrieve. You can fish the bottom in this way all the way in. In shallower water, do the same thing with the Medium Diver.
When working the water column, once you are in the spot you want to fish, start fishing with a Surface Giant Pike. Fan cast, working the water in front of you. Then fish both sides, and if you are out on a rock, keep the fish honest by casting behind you. If you are into fish, get the most out of the Surface Pike before going deeper with a Medium Diver, and, if there is enough water, a Deep Diver. A good share of the bigger fish caught on my plugs have come from the Divers.
Because these Divers float at rest, if you start your retrieve slowly, you can also fish your plugs nearer the surface which shows the versatility of this plug.
Conditions That Favor the Divers
Divers are heavier and have a slower swimming action, so they do well in the heavy current of a breachway or river mouth. The Deep Diver has done well when floated out in a breach way or coastal river, then holding it in the current. It appears that the fish follow the plug out and then when you hold it swimming in the current, the fish will hit it!
Divers also do well in big wave conditions and in deep coves close to shore where the fish were right on the bottom. I knew the fish were there by observing the success of some bait fisherman.
Finally, I have also used the Diver to get a little more distance in my cast in windy conditions. And, in windy or stormy conditions, you can still use a slow retrieve, keeping under the big waves. Another technique is to swim the Diver down and then let it float up to the surface with that enticing waggle.
Big Fish Around
I traveled to the south shore of Rhode Island last week – my annual sojourn to fish the open ocean. I always begin my season around May 20 to coincide with the arrival of the bigger fish. I knew the fish were aggressive by the small fish that hit my Giant Pike. I also noticed how easily the fish came unhooked and soon realized I was using one of the pikes on which I had crushed the barbs – an idea I was toying with since I hooked myself last summer and because I wanted to go a little easier on the fish.
Bad idea. About 10 casts later, I had a tremendous hit – like something had hit my pike with a sledge hammer. It was 2am, fairly light with a half moon and the water was calm, but I saw no evidence of the strike on the surface.
The fish went right to the bottom and started rubbing on the rocks. I got her up off the bottom and went back and forth. I was well aware that I had no barbs on my hook, so I kept a tight line. Then she made a funny twist and was gone. Too bad – she felt like high twenties, low thirty pounds. You can be sure, I won’t be crushing barbs anymore!
Awesome Surf Bag
I recently received a surf bag made for me by Tom White of Commando Surfcasting http://www.commandosurfcasting.com You may recognize Tom’s name from my story “A Night to Remember”. I wanted to comfortably carry a Troller, SLIM Troller, and a Jointed Eel in a belt bag that I could swim with. Tom fulfilled my request and the bag is a beauty. He is the only one I know who is making a bag that can hold a 12” plug. I reviewed the bag with pictures on SOL — check it out.
New Inventory…Summer Vacation
Last but not least, I’ve just added more plugs to my Traditional and SLIMS inventories. Be sure to take a look and stock up now as I am honoring my wife’s request to take July and August off from plugmaking.
IF YOU ARE CATCHING FISH ON YOUR PIKES AND WANT TO SHOW YOUR APPRECIATION, SEND ALONG YOUR PHOTOS SO I CAN POST ON MY SITE. THANKS!
PERMISSION TO REPRINT: This article may be reprinted provided it appears in its entirety with the following attribution: © Copyright 2001-2011 BigWaterLures.com. Reprinted by permission of Gary Soldati.