HOW BAROMETRIC PRESSURE AFFECTS FISHING FISH WITH LARGE SWIM BLADDERS, SUCH AS TROUT AND SALMON, ARE MORE SENSITIVE TO PRESSURE CHANGES.
DANNY COYNE / PRO STAFF / BCFISHN.COM
BY DANNY COYNE
The majority of anglers can agree that there are many natural elements that come into play, which affects fishing. These include air and water temperature, winds, currents water clarity, and the level of light available. Most of us have experienced a day of fishing when the bite was nonstop action, but then the next day we couldn’t buy a bite, despite fishing the same methods in the same areas. This extreme flip in fishing action most likely occurred due to changes in the barometric pressure. Simply put, barometric pressure is the weight of the atmosphere pressing down on everything on earth and it constantly changes from high to low. When observing pressure for fishing, how high or low isn’t as important as
which direction the pressure is moving and what speed it is changing. Fish can feel the weight of the air pressing on the water by sensing the pressure changes in the air of their organs, especially their swim bladders, which controls their buoyancy. Fish with large swim bladders, such as trout and salmon, are even more sensitive to these pressure changes.
because it will cater to the aggressive feeding fish. When fishing rivers, retrieve large streamers or minnow patterns across a fast run, active trout chase down your fly and hammer it. Fishing during barometric pressure is one of the best times you can fish!
So how does all of this affect fishing? To make it simple, let’s break it down to a few periods on how you can use a barometer as a gauge on how the fish will be acting and feeding.
Lucky for us anglers, low pressure systems don’t tend to last that long. However, once the falling pressure has stabalized to a low pressure system, the fish are going to retreat to the deeper water. One of the reasons they are doing this is to equalize their swim bladders. The fishing will slow down as there is a lack of interest for the fish to feed — simply put, because they are uncomfortable. The shallower the fish are in the water, the more they will feel the results of the low pressure system.
FALLING BAROMETRIC PRESSURE Fish can sense an oncoming storm as much as a day in advance. This is when the fish react and become very aggressive because they understand that feeding during the low pressure storm periods can be a challenge. You can recognize the barometer dropping because this is when the clouds start to roll in and the poor weather is approaching.
with large swim blad“ Fish ders, such as trout and salmon, are even more sensitive to these pressure changes. DANNY COYNE / PRO STAFF / BCFISHN.COM
This is a great time to use fast-moving baits and presentations. When trolling a large lake, use fast-trolled lures, such as Sling Blades™ and Rock Dancers®
DURING LOW PRESSURE
Effective fishing techniques during this time are to use slower-finesse presentations in deep water. When trolling your gear, slow down and downsize your lures. The fish will not want to use a lot of energy to chase your bait. When fishing rivers, try a nymph pattern drifted just off bottom in slack water at the tail end of a run. In smaller mountain lakes, using small flies, like chironomids or blood worms, suspended just off bottom in deep water could result in encouraging an opportunistic fish to strike. GO TO BCFISHN.COM | @BCFISHN
RISING PRESSURE Once the storm passes, the pressure will start to rise again, bringing blue bird skies with no wind, but the fishing will continue to remain slow, as the fish have to adapt to the pressure changes. Their feeding habits will take a day or two to return to normal. The colder the water temperature, the longer it will take for the fish to adapt. One good thing after a storm has passed through is that it tends to wash a lot of food back into the water for the fish to feed upon. For example, when fishing a river, a surge of rain can push a variety of terrestrial insects into the water. When the fish become active again, there is plenty of food for them to forage on, so using terrestrial fly patterns during this time can be successful. During a rising pressure system and when fishing larger bodies of water, you may find the fish stacked up within the same zone in the water column. This is a good time to try to irritate them into striking your gear with some sort of lure that provides vibration. Using irritant scents, such as garlic and anise, can also aid in getting those stubborn fish to strike. Again, using slower-trolled or retrieved lures is ideal in these conditions. Fishing near surface on large bodies of water is not a good option during this time. STABLE PRESSURE Once the barometric pressure becomes stable, fishing will convert to average again. This is a great time to try new fishing techniques as the fish have gone back to their normal feeding activities. This is when anglers will have to search for the fish using other natural elements, wuch as wind or current to determine where the fish will be found. Forecasting barometric pressure is a lot more difficult than forecasting the weather, however paying close attention to the weather trends mentioned above will lead you in the right direction. Using weather forecasts that predict the air pressure will aid you in planning your fishing adventure. No matter what the air is doing, any safe weather day is a good day to go fishing in my book!
MACK’S LURE RELEASES NEW DOUBLE D™ DODGER The new Double D™ 5.8” adds yet another dynamic attractor to the Mack’s Lure line of products.
WENATCHEE, Wash — Mack’s Lure Inc., manufacturer of Double D™ Dodger, Original Sling Blade™ and ScentFlash™ product lines, has released yet another dynamic option to its line of tournamentproven attractors — the Double D™ 5.8. The 5.8-inch verison of the Double D™ Dodgeris an expansion of the product line, which also includes a 4.4- and 7.6inch verison, ideal for trout, kokanee, salmon and many other fish species. “The Double D Dodger 5.8 was created out of necessity,” Mack’s Lure Sales Director Bob Loomis said. “The 4.4-inch works fantastic for kokanee and trout and the larger 7.6-inch version works great for steelhead and salmon, but you have circumstances that leave you with a void.
action to your lure. With five attachment points, you can easily spread your lines, while also doubling as a side planer. The Double D™ Dodger 5.8 is now available at MacksLure.com in UV Lemon Lime, UV Pearl, Silver and Hot Pink. SHOP DOUBLE D™ DODGER 5.8
SONIC BAITFISH™ (SBF)
TIPS & TECHNIQUES
dodger specializes in “ This being able to fish deep with
a lot of movement at much slower speeds using larger lures. BOB LOOMIS, MACK’S LURE SALES DIRECTOR
“Ultimately, the Double D Dodger 5.8 was created for fishing the ‘in between species and styles.’ This dodger specializes in being able to fish deep, with a lot of movement at much slower speeds with larger lures. “You would generally hang up and lose more gear with the larger dodgers trying to fish the bottom and have problems attracting fish from much further away using the smaller dodgers. “The new Double D Dodger 5.8 works fantastic for all of these issues and will be a welcomed addition to the 4.4 and 7.6 line up.” Like its predecessors, the Double D™ Dodger 5.8 not only has the proven, traditional dodger action, but it also delivers its patent-pending stop-and-go
THE VERSATILITY OF THE SBF™ BY PETE ROSKO
SBF TECH GUIDE
From a personal standpoint, a welldesigned metal jig is the ideal fishing lure for me wherever I travel. Its only limitation is extreme water depth. It can be cast, jigged, swimmed or trolled. It is the Sonic BaitFish™ (SBF). When I began desining metal jigs almost 40 years ago, my goal was twofold. I wanted to create a lure that was both effective and easy to use. I wanted fishing to be fun, like I remember it as a youth in the 1940s. In one word — uncomplicated. It can also be very expensive as advertisers tell us about all of the high tech equipment we need to
catch fish. I’m an example of a low budget angler fishing with a low budget rig. In 1980, I moved to Port Angeles and purchased a new 14-foot tiller-operated boat rigged with a used 6 HP kicker and a new 20 HP Suzuki — all for $4,100. It was the biggest boat that my garage could handle. Thirty nine years later, I still have that garage and that boat. The only changes were upgrades to Mercury TECH GUIDE outboards. Originally, I was a salmon moocher and troller. But, my fascination with metal jigs steered me in that direction. By early 1983, I applied for a mechanical patent for my new metal jig — the Crippled Herring. That U.S. patent was granted in 1986. Prior to that time, metal jigs did not resemble bait fish.
Note: The Crippled Herring was the first to resemble a real bait fish — the Pacific Herring. The Crippled Herring was also the first metal jig to attach a metal attractor blade to the tail. The Swedish Pimple had one, but it was red plastic and kept breaking off.
I was never able to catch large numbers of fish by mooching or trolling. That dramatically changed with jiggin and casting metal jigs. What also changed was that I needed only a single lure-type to fish anywhere! That included both fresh and salt water and through the ice. A multitude of state, IGFA and foreign country fish records are a testament to the effectivenss of that metal jig. The Crippled Herring was a valuable teaching lesson in improving the mechanics, and versatility, of future metal jigs. In a short time period, the Sonic BaitFish™ has had its share
of accomplishments. Some of those notables are as follows: - “Best Lure in All Canada” Award by the All Canada Magazine and Professional Angler and Writer Gord Pyzer; - Modern day Lake Erie walleye record of 14-lbs. by 11 year-old Will Tibbels; - Sept. 26, 2015. Lake Sutherland, WA. One-man jigging catch of (200) kokanee; - Sekiu, WA. Twice, two-angler (200) coho salmon released, casting 1/3 oz. SBF between Pillar Point & Slip Point. I do not carry downriggers on my boat because I much prefer drift casting and vertical jigging — following the natural flow of water. I rely on my fish locator to help me find the fish. If I do troll, I still enjoy flatline trolling early in the morning with fish located near the surface and where I can work the rod. When fish run deeper, I rig with a diver. This method has given me the opportunity to troll a Glow White Sonic BaitFish™ and out-fish my fishing partner’s hoochies and cut plug herring off of their downrigger. This method also allows me to more easily detect any debris that may catch on my presentation. I am a strong proponent of adding an Indiana spinner blade to the tail of my metal jig. If the eye of the blade is too small to attach to the split ring on the back side of the hook, then attach it with a duo-lock snap like the one included in the Sonic BaitFish™ package. Always place the shiny side out. The Sonic BaitFish™ acts as a mini flasher with its darting action. Adding a tail adds to its flash and vibration.
high winds made fishing the Sonic BaitFish™ impossible. Nice walleyes were belly-down on the bottom in about 35-feet of water. Even casting the SBF ahead of the drift just gave me seconds to feel bottom. Out of desperation, I attached my SBF tipped with a nightcrawler to a borrowed bottom bouncer rig and dropped it straight down. In short order, I caught my limit of six walleyes. With that boat speed, I was actually trolling — not drifting — that SBF. I would like to think that this bottom bouncer technique could be deadly on the Columbia River. I wish I was familiar with it some time ago when I was invited to fish the Tri Cities area of the Columbia River when vast amounts of water were being released from the dams that made jigging very difficult. In closing, I will not be available for my column in the October issue of the Mack Attack Magazine. In early September, I will be leaving Port Angeles to fall fish Lake Erie and will end in Florida’s Gulf of Mexico in October. You guessed it! Yep, it will be with the Sonic BaitFish™ all the way. Also, please remember how deadly the Glow White SBF is on that fall run of silvers in Washington State — casting or trolling. Thank you for being a valued subscriber to the Mack Attack Magazine. It is my sincere hope that my articles add to your success, and enjoyment, on the water.
As a result, I find that adding an attractor in front of the lure actually deadens the jig’s action and minimizes strikes. Do you remember my story where a plain 2 oz. pearl white Crippled Herring was attached 3-feet behind the downrigger and caught 8 of the 9 chinook on Capt. Ed Ruck’s Lake Michigan salmon troll boat?
After almost 40 years of working with metal jigs, I still am learning something on every outing. Previously mentioned in an earlier article, this year’s biggest discovery happened on Lake Erie when
SHOP MACK’S LURE UV SCENTS
HOT DEAL OF THE MONTH
OF THE MONTH Have a questions you want answered? Send your inquiry to us and yours may be featured! Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to us on Facebook, Instagram or YouTube. Just search @MacksLure and you’ll find us! Q: I recently received an order from you guys and I was wondering if the Smile Blade® 0.8 can be cast and retrieved in front of a mini swim bait with a 1/16 oz. jig head. Also, what’s the best way to charge your UV and Glow tapered beads on the majority of your lures?
PHOTO OF THE MONTH Mack’s Lure Guide Staff Jeff Witkowski of Darrell & Dad’s Guide Service in Lake Chelan shows off a gorgeous Lahontan Cutthroat caught on a Hum Dinger 1/2 oz.
A: Great questions! To answer your first question, the Smile Blade® can definitely be cast and is a very effective fishcatcher. It’s aerodynamic, as the Smile Blade® 0.8 is only slightly noticeable when casting into the wind. We always recommend having a bead pegged, or a bobber stop, a couple inches above the Smile Blade® when rigging it for casting to prevent it from moving up the line during the cast. As for our beads, for luminescent, glow in the dark beads, you want to charge it with the brightest light source you have, including a camera flash, sunlight, flash light, etc. For UV, there is no charging needed. They will always glow under UV light conditions. You can see the UV by using a blacklight, which is definitely something you’ll want to keep in the boat!
PHOTO CREDIT: JEFF WITKOWSKI
VIDEO OF THE MONTH Mack’s Lure Pro Staff Mike Hall explains the differences between the Double D and Original Sling Blade, how to use them and tips and tricks to get the most of them.
Thank you for the great questions! Send yours to us to have yours featured next! Follow Mack’s Lure on Facebook and Instagram and tag us with #MacksLure. Facebook.com/MacksLure @macks_lure To submit your catch, send us an email at email@example.com or tag us on social media using #MacksLure.