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Thread: Advice for a Bass Angler learning to chase muskies

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    Advice for a Bass Angler learning to chase muskies

    What would you have a bass angler change about their fishing style, especially long-ingrained habits, when hunting muskies?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MissouriMark View Post
    What would you have a bass angler change about their fishing style, especially long-ingrained habits, when hunting muskies?
    Get used to lots more work with lots less rewards...

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    Quote Originally Posted by MissouriMark View Post
    What would you have a bass angler change about their fishing style, especially long-ingrained habits, when hunting muskies?
    You will have to relearn how to use your trolling motor. Nothing drives me battier than musky fishing in a boat with a cable drive motor operated in a bass fishing manner.

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    If and when you finally catch one, don't lip it!

    Seriously, if you are a good bass fisherman then you should pick up musky fishing easily. Work on your figure 8 at the boat would come to mind first. Depending on the lakes you fish, over 50% of your muskies can be caught in the 8. Always do some sort of maneuver at the boat on every cast. Sharpen hooks more often. Bigger hooks tend to get dull easier. Even sharpen them on brand new lures. Get at least 11 pliers and keep the fish in the net in the water to remove hooks. Hook proof gloves, too. Of course you need a giant net.
    Besides that it is mostly targeting shoreline structure and weed edges like bass fishing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd M View Post
    You will have to relearn how to use your trolling motor. Nothing drives me battier than musky fishing in a boat with a cable drive motor operated in a bass fishing manner.
    Could you explain further please?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Esoxrox View Post
    Could you explain further please?
    I was curious about that too?

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    Bass guys like to stop go stop go with the cable drive. Speed on high. Nothing ruins a cast and angle like it unless your just burning bucktails. Your working a jerkbait, glider, twitchbait, start the cable drive, cast ruined. Much more comfortable and no casts wasted when a trolling motor is run on constant with slight adjustments to speed and direction as opposed to the abrupt moves made from a cable drive.
    Last edited by Todd M; 01-12-2017 at 06:08 PM.

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    I would advise this guy to change nothing. I've been in, at least, half a dozen events (including PMTT events) when a bass group was fishing the same lake and the same ramps. Every time it happens, the bass guys catch more muskies by accident than we catch on purpose. (Hint) There's a whole lot more truth and lesson in this than you will likely believe!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by junkman View Post
    I would advise this guy to change nothing. I've been in, at least, half a dozen events (including PMTT events) when a bass group was fishing the same lake and the same ramps. Every time it happens, the bass guys catch more muskies by accident than we catch on purpose. (Hint) There's a whole lot more truth and lesson in this than you will likely believe!!
    That's the truth! A knowledgeable bass fisherman using musky tackle fishing musky water becomes a pretty good musky guy too. Many similarities!

  10. #10
    Senior Member Steve Heiting's Avatar
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    First, Mark, just as bass guys release all their fish, musky anglers put all their fish back, too. Because of the size of the baits, hooks, mouth and teeth, we carry specialized tools for unhooking. A long needle-nose pliers of at least 11 inches (as mentioned by Dave above) is a great first step. I use a 16-inch pliers (because it keeps my hands farther away from the teeth, and not because I catch bigger fish than Dave ). You'll also need mini bolt-cutters to cut hooks (buy Knipex and don't look back), a mouth spreader (you'll need this maybe once a year, but you'll be glad you have it), unhooking gloves (Musky Armor) to protect your hands and the fish, a big net (Frabill makes the best), a split ring piers to replace cut hooks, extra hooks, and a hook file.

    Net your fish and leave it and the net bag in the water so the fish can breathe through the unhooking process. Tangle the netting in a net cleat so you don't lose your net at some point (see the attached -- unstaged -- pic. If I didn't do this I'd lose a couple nets a year). Unhook the fish in the net and leave it there. Get your rod and bait out of the way (hooks have a nasty habit of showing up again in your hide, and you don't want to kneel on a rod). When your buddy is ready with the camera, pick the fish up and smile for a couple pics, then put it back in the water.

    After that, converting from bass to muskies is pretty simple. We use essentially the same baits, only supersized. Muskies use weeds like largemouths, and rocks and open water like smallmouths. They also like current. They're less tolerant of very warm water (80 and above).

    Good luck!
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    Steve Heiting

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