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      Members Only Fluid Forum View   08/08/2017

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what tends to be the best baits for muskies at Clear Lake,Iowa? I'm new to this species and am excited to get my feet wet (mostly lures). I have read some great info from this forum and know that it is a great starting point for anglers to use.

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Whatever baits you start with, just be prepared to never have enough. Musky fishing is the biggest black hole besides your truck and boat. There is always something new, something that is hot, something that you won't be able to resist, and before you know it you'll be shopping in your garage like it's the outdoors store before you go fishing if you're not careful!

Basic Baits:

Soft Plastics are a newer category of baits that come in all sorts of sizes, colors, and shapes. These can really be a great bait when nothing else is moving fish.

Examples: Bulldogs, Suzy Suckers, Curly Sues, Killer Eels, Storm Shads, etc

Bucktails/Spinnerbaits are a must have on any lake. These baits can be fished shallow, deep, fast, slow, and come in sizes from panfish size up to Double 13 size blades and beyond. Very versatile and a proven fish catcher for many. You can typically expect many follows using bucktails.

Examples: Cowgirls, Musky Buck, Harasser, Inhaler, Musky Candy, etc

Topwaters can be a great tool to use. These are nice to use when you want to create a ruckus on the water and really fun to fish. Muskies look like Great Whites hitting these things, but also miss often as well. Not a high percentage bait all the time but you can land some monster fish on topwaters.

Examples: Top Raider, Pacemaker, Rambler, Globe, Jackpot

Jerkbaits are also a great presentation to get some of those lethargic fish into more active fish. These baits require a little more work by the operator by twitching your rod or varying reel speed to make the bait move erratically.

Examples: Suick, Reef Hawg, Bobbie Baits, etc

These are the basic baits that will start catching fish for you. My suggestion would be to buy a variety of lures in the various categories to experiment with them and see how they function and if you like that style. Some guys can't stand Suicks and others will throw them all season long without switching. It really is up to you and what you are comfortable with (confidence bait).

Happy Fishing!

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I have only fished it once so far and will be fishing the tourney there on the 31st. I have had my best luck on a Hellhound. I would also get a Triple D, Bulldawg, Cowgirl, and a Wades Wobbler. Not sure if you get a topwater bite there or not. We don't here on the IGL's but you can't go wrong with a Weagle.

Like already stated once you start it's never ending.

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After fishing that lake this spring, i'd recommend either black or really bright yellow/chartreuse baits.

Manta's, bulldogs, bucktails and rattlebaits moved fish for us.

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Awesome! Thanks for the advice. As of now, I have a lure of each described above. With the water clarity of the lake I figured that chartruese and gold may be productive colors.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • The gobbler came in and beat the jake down I shot him and five seconds later the hen decoy fell over from not being able to stake it down in the frozen ground.
    • I don't have near the birds featherslayer has. My groups were one gobbler with three or four  hens. There was zero gobbling on the roost both mornings. When they hit the ground there was a lot of gobbling and strutting for a couple of hours. The one I shot this morning answered my calls a  couple of times but was out of sight the whole while. He stopped gobbling for a hour and a half when suddenly there was a gobble and close. I called a little bit and he popped out of the trees about eighty yards away and stood there in full strut and just checked things out. Did some soft calling and here he came in full strut and went right to my jake decoy and gave him a beat down. That was all it wrote for him. Classic case of him losing his hens and coming to check out that hen he had answered after flydown. This is a little area I'm hunting and I had let a jake go last year and I'm hoping this was him. Good luck to the rest of our teammates.
    • On my first sit right now. 40 birds in the field, at least 5 shooters, 2 of those are very nice. Think they have to come by me to roost. Fingers crossed.
    • Good job buddy. Glad to see you wiped that skunk off the new bow.
    • Way to close the deal guys!
    • I would always use tree tubes for any hardwoods. If it's small enough to need a tube for protection from deer, rabbits, other... than use the tube. If your putting in the time and money to plant them, you might as well protect them.    Lots of them are on the market. I have only used one type of tube myself. Tubex- combitudes (spelling?). If you are worried about deer you should get the 5 foot tubes. Since that is about the upper limit of their browsing heights. I've used the fiberglass green stakes from L & M instead of buying the stakes from tree tubes suppliers. The only problems i have had so far is a curious bear, who wanted to chew a few tubes.    The other thing you should think about talking to your local DNR forester. They can help you to make sure you are planting trees that are correct for your soils. And may be able to help financially to purchase tubes.    Hope this helps, 
    • Thanks. Even got the itch to take a spin after seeing other bikes out today. Just a short ride down to the car wash to knock the dust off. Should have worn gloves though as it was a little nippy on the fingers. Maybe Ill run my Super Glide down there tomorrow
    • Birds in my area are too responsive, and yes i had 2 big fellas come in to my 1 tom and 2 hen set up. Accually i had the whole flock coming in and it was load with the hens and all the toms. One thing i fogured out is if there is alot of birds dont be soft calling. I tried to top the old hen and thats what pulled them my way. Good luck to my team and hopfully everybody could have a morning like I did, it wont be forgotten.
    • Well sounds like all went well. My wife just called and picked her up. She does have a drain tube but according to the wife she's acting normal..... For her!