But, I fish with artificials because I simply enjoy the satisfaction of knowing that I enticed a fish to take my bait – I was able to use my own methods to cause the fish to strike my lure.
Lots of people choose artificial lures based on their close resemblance to a baitfish. And, there are lots of lures out there that mimic a baitfish extremely well. However, there are also lots of lures out there that don’t look at all like any baitfish I ever saw. And I seem to catch more fish on these lures than I do the “natural” looking lures.
There are a lot of lures that will catch fish – in our case for this article, we are talking about spotted seatrout. I have probably used most of them at some point, but I have developed some favorites over the years that I seem to stay with even though I have others in my tackle array.
Other articles I have on my site describe the lures I like to use. I want to show you how I use them in this article.
- The Boone Spinana and its slightly larger look alike the Castana have been around for a very long time. The only changes over the years have been in the body material make-up and some new color combinations. But, both of these lures have produced fish for me for a long time. I seem to keep going back to them rather than trying something new.
- I fish both of these lures the same way. The only differences between them are size and weight – I can cast the larger Castana farther on windy days than I can the Spinana.
- I use an erratic retrieve on this topwater. To describe it would be to say: twitch, twitch, wait - twitch, twitch, wait. Sometimes I will twitch three or even four times between waits. Sometimes I only twitch once.
- These two lures are floaters, and the twitch drives the lure a foot or so under the water. The second and/or third twitch simply moves the lure under the surface. During the wait, the lure rises back to the surface. While I do get strikes twitching, I get many more during that wait as the lure rises, so you need to be ready.
- On occasion I try swimming the lure directly back to the boat just under the surface. I do this after I have tried twitching for a while – just something to break up the normal routine that the fish may have become accustomed to.
- For colors, I prefer the red and white – red head and white body – for seatrout. I like this color combination more because I have caught fish on it since the mid 1950’s on a variety of lures. I also like the new pink and chartreuse color combinations. While I catch primarily seatrout on the red and white, the newer colors will also draw strikes from other fish, like red drum and even flounder. And, yes I have caught flounder on a topwater lure – specifically the Spinana.
Spinana and Castana
- This is another old standby for me. If the fish aren’t taking to a topwater bait very well, I will often switch to this one. The colors I like are once again in the reds, pinks, and chartreuse combinations. I have several old 52M27 Mirr-O-lures in my box. They go back to the 1960’s when we used them for snook and tarpon. This is the green back, silver sided staple that made the lure famous over the years. It is a slow sinking lure and it moves erratically under the water.
- I use the same erratic, unpredictable twitch that I do with the Spinana, only this time the lure may be down two or three feet under the water. The wait period with this one is shorter, because the lure is sinking, and depending on water depth, you may end up on an oyster bed!
- These are good lures when the trout seem to be deeper in the water column – like just off the edge of a river channel or in a deep hole in the bend of a creek or river.
- Newer offerings from Mirr-O-Lure are the Top Dog and Top Dog, Jr. These are both topwater baits that can be worked right on the surface. They won’t dive like a Spinana, and they can be “walked” similar to the old Zara Spook. The technique is called “walking the dog”, and it takes some practice to get it down right. Basically it is a rhythmic twitch/pause, twitch/pause, twitch/pause cadence done as you slowly reel in line. It causes the lure to zigzag back and forth on the surface. I little practice will have you walking your own dog in short order.
- This one is ideal for very shallow water applications because it stays on the surface.