Tips For Tracking Down Springtime Pike

Tips For Tracking Down Springtime Pike


Looking to get on some great northern pike fishing? Spring is one of the best times to catch them. Here’s what you need to know.


Ice-out spawners


Spring means skinny-water pike

Early-season pike like shallow, protected areas with warming water. These locations also attract baitfish, yellow perch and other pike forage.


Shallow flats frequently attract pike. Focus on flats within bays, coves and backwater areas. Flats in front of marshes and feeder creeks also appeal to pike.


Sand beaches and sand bars are also reliable spots. Points are always worth fishing, especially structures leading shallow bays and coves.


Expect to find pike relating to cover within the above areas. Examples include weed beds, logs and organic matter forming dark patches on sandy bottoms. Northerns frequently position along outside edges, pockets and lanes in bullrushes, reeds, pads and other vegetation.


Pike will also orient themselves around boulders, rocky spines and reefs. These type of structural nuances are always prime casting targets.


Tip: Wear polarized sunglasses to reduce water glare for improved visibility when sight-fishing.


Sensational spring pike lures

Now that you know where to find springtime pike, let’s look at lures for catching them. Here are four to get you started.


Super Shad Rap


The Super Shad Rap has a well-earned reputation for catching big pike thanks to its lifelike profile and natural swimming action. Super Shad Raps now comes in four awesome new colours (chrome, goldfish, halloween and scaled baitfish) perfect for shallow-water tactics. Swim a Super Shad Rap with a steady retrieve, work it with a start-stop cadence or twitch it erratically to catch spring pike.


Rap-V Blade


The Rap-V Blade is a unique bait deadly at triggering pike. Built with a metal “blade” frame sandwiched within a durable, plastic body, it produces tight vibrations on the lift or the retrieve. Add a loud BB rattle system, and the result is a sonic signature pike have never heard before. Visual appeal is off the charts, too, thanks to the Rap-V’s internal scales and metalized flash foil. Swim with a straight retrieve, jig it along bottom or yo-yo it over the top of weeds.


360GT Searchbait Shad


The Storm 360GT Searchbait® Shad is another must-have. The natural profile and alluring swimming action drives pike wild. Slowly reel a 360GT Searchbait® Shad to coax sluggish pike. Or, use a burn-kill retrieve to trigger reaction strikes. You can’t fish it wrong as its seductive, slow body roll and exaggerated tail action work at any speed.


Terminator Super Stainless Spinnerbaits


The flash, thump and skirt action on the Terminator Super Stainless Spinnerbaits easily deceive shallow pike. This spinnerbait is excellent for covering water and casting to specific targets. Don’t be shy to contact obstacles, like crawling it across weed tops or bumping it into a log. These moves stimulate strikes.



Other great pike baits are the X-Rap® Haku, Otus, Peto, Twitchin’ Rap and Rattlin’ Minnow Spoon. Read this blog for details


Rod set-ups for pike

As we’ve written in past blogs, optimal rod performance is achieved when the blank’s lure weight rating is balanced with the weight of bait used. When targeting pike using the X-Rap Haku, Otus, Peto, Twitchin’ Rap and other lures weighing an ounce or more, use a Omen Black Gen II Casting 8’ heavy (OB3C8H-SB) or extra-heavy (OB3C8XH) model.


13 Fishing Omen Black Swimbait Rod


Pair either rod with a Concept A3 Gen II baitcaster. Its rugged H.A.M. hardened brass gearing and 40-pounds of Carbon Bull Drag deliver the power and control needed for landing trophy pike.


13 Fishing Concept A Reels


Use an Omen Black Gen II Casting 7’1” to 7’6” medium-heavy rod to fish the Rap-V, 360GT Searchbait® Shad and other lures weighing under an ounce. Outfit the rod with a Concept A3 Gen II or Concept A Gen II Baitcast Reel. With a proper drag setting and strong line, these combos are powerful enough to tame big fish, but just as suitable for average-sized pike.


13 Fishing Omen Black Casting Rods


Bet on ProMix Braid

Sufix ProMix Braid is perfect for spring pike tactics. Use 50-pound for heavy and extra-heavy combos. Drop to 30- or 40-pound for medium-heavy outfits.


Sufix ProMix Braid


ProMix braid offers exceptional lure control - just what’s needed for flawless, start-stop retrieves with a Super Shad Rap or Husky Jerk. It’s also low stretch, providing sensitivity for ultimate bite detection and firm hook-setting power.


ProMix has superior knot and shock strength. It’s also highly abrasion resistant. These are important characteristics when battling powerful predators in shallow water.



Every pike angler needs leaders. The 80-pound VMC Fluorocarbon Leader is durable and virtually impossible for pike to see underwater. It’s a great choice for clear water.

VMC Fluorocarbon Leader

The 75-pound VMC Titanium Leader is also superb. It resists kinking, giving it a long life span.

VMC Multi-Strand Titanium Leaders

Head to the shallows this spring for stellar northern pike action. And, don’t forget a hook file for keeping points sharp, along with pliers and other catch-and-release tools — you’re going to need them.