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Finesse lures aren't just for panfish

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Finesse lures aren't just for panfish
When choosing lures, the first step is asking the right questions. The second step is realizing that a few will do - meaning - that when it comes to finesse lures, even one design is capable of catching almost all freshwater fish species in a lake. The rest is the search until you find one or more fish and then noting depth, cover, bottom contour, etc.

A lure is the best tool to find fish. Every body of water in various states fish different depending on maximum depth, cover, shoreline configurations, etc. I like fishing in water 15' or less max. and fish different depths until I find a depth pattern. It might be 6' in one area near shore or in 1' near pads or other vegetation.

KNOW THY WATER ! Different fish choose different habitat areas even in the same lake or pond and on the same day. IMO, a few lures I designed (by accident), are able to provoke strikes from inactive/ suspending fish, which I assume the case whether in 1' or 15'.

Vertical jigging catches fish only a small percentage of the time for me but only because I can cover far more water reeling a lure horizontal to the bottom at the right depth. When you assume fish are inactive/ suspending, you take for granted they need time to detect, focus on and be provoked by your lure. Most fish I've caught have rarely charged fast moving lures. KVD found that out and pretty much gave upa hit & run approach. There is a right and wrong way to cover water but a finesse approach only allows one way.

A finesse style assumes that fish senses are fine tuned to detect the slightest movements of lures, a subtle lure action provoking fish with slow retrieves. You can still cover water with finesse lures
just not as fast as say some floating crankbaits that must be reeled faster to keep them at the right depth.

I truly believe the above key in catching any fish species and when I say you have the choice of many lures that will catch fish most days - I mean it ! Here are a few I make myself that are finesse lures I know I can always rely on as long as I'm in the right area:


Any of the above when rigged on a light jig IE1/32 - 1/16 oz ball head jigs, WILL catch fish. Some use curl tail grubs and do well and I used them for decades until I started making my own, experimenting with different tail designs which allow the slowest retrieve. They can also be used under a float for the absolute slowest retrieve.

Note: slow unsteady retrieves are also essential!

Note: small diameter line is a must to allow the best lure action, especially the deeper you fish. I prefer thin braid of 8# or 10# test along with a 4-6 # test fluorocarbon leader.

The above is only one angler's suggestion how I catch fish.
(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 10, 2018, 6:01 PM)
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Good info thanks for sharing it with us and you kind lure offer. How clear is the water you normally fish in? By the way, you did not add any pics.
To anyone that is interested in SenkoSam's Finesse lure offer, I've tried them and they work.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
I had to leave the computer to try out some lures in my pond.
The post needed editing, so I took my time to add some examples photos and change the script.

Here are just a few more lure designs that have caught many fish/ multiple species:
beetle spin I made and a lure I modified:




clear tail grub:




finesse lure used under a float:



thin spike tail:


Crappie Magnet grub:


Wacky rigged grub:


Brewer's Slider Worm:

(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 10, 2018, 6:14 PM)
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
I tried the beetle spin yesterday, with a small strip of perch meat on a curly tail grub, no luck, tried it without the perch meat too, no luck. Kind of thought the stained water we fished in might have been the reason why but the water temp was cool at only 47 degrees. Sure seem to work for you.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
I tried it and other lures yesterday with the wind blasting at 30 mph. None on B.Spin and only one fish on a finesse lure with water temp around 42 degrees and a major cold front moving in.

That's fishing!
(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 11, 2018, 6:30 AM)
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
"That's fishing" LOL, isn't that truth but fishing in 30 mph winds is crazy in a boat, when I'm out in my boat, I rarely fish long when the wind gets above 10 to 12 mph. You are a true die hard fisherman.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
No,no,no,no! I'm talking the pond behind my house. No way I'd be on a lake even with a 15 mph wind.
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
LOL, Ok understand now, don't know many folks that can handle fishing in a boat with winds that strong. So you were fishing from shore.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Yes. I have casting access to most of it even with light lures.


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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Nice, you are a lucky guys to have that little piece of heaven in your back yard, even if you have to mow around it from time to timeWink.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Biggest problem is keeping heron from eating the fish. Frown

I also have to make sure there is enough light getting through the ice in winter or risk a winterkill, meaning that I have to snowblow when the snow is 2' or more. One year all the fish died, floating to the surface after ice out because the snow was 4' for over a month and a 2yr drought lowered the water 5'. (from 8'max)

Had to start all over again.
(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 12, 2018, 4:54 AM)
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Have you ever considered a bubbler to keep your pond from freezing in the Winter? I guess if it gets too cold there it would not be practical but I know the State Parks folks use them here during the winter to keep the boat harbors from freezing and they seem to be pretty effective. At some of our high elevation lakes they also use wind to power the aerators they use to keep the lakes from having winter kill. Of course everything comes with a price but those are a couple of options. Did you dig that pond yourself?


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Yes Curt I had it dug out. To play it safe I got stocking permits from authorized fisheries and put in 4 fish species, some of which spawned every year.

I have looked into aerators and prices are a bit on the high side. They do work even in shallow water and pond management sites highly recommend them. Solar seems the only option since electric connections would have to run 40 yards underground from the house outlet. Weed beds are healthy all through winter as long as enough light passes through the ice.

At least it's easy to stock fish caught from my local waters when the water is 70 degrees or below and I no longer add bass over a pound.
Panfish I add of all sizes - especially large perch, sunfish and crappie.
There are also catfish to eat dead fish off bottom or floaters.

The NYS DEC doesn't have a problem me stocking fish in that the pond has no outlet to any waters (stream) and only inflow pipes angled down to it. Fish kept elsewhere are up to the angler to do what he wants with them as long as they aren't transferred from one water to another.
(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 13, 2018, 7:16 AM)
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
OK, the reason I was asking about if you dug it or had someone else dig it, there is another option, you might consider, digging it deeper. Of course if the pond is deep enough and the issue isn't that the fish die because it is too shallow but rather because the plant life dies, then that would not work. Kind of sounds like you are already doing the best thing for it by snow blowing it during the Winter but I bet that's a pain the butt getting your snow blower down to the pond during the Winter.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
The last year of the drought (2 years in a row) made the banks too steep for me to get the snow blower back up. The ice level was 5' below where it should have been leaving only three feet of water covered by ice. I could see the fish swimming around. Never expected all to die.
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Not much you can do about lack of water but here is a small Solar heater that might help:
https://www.amazon.com/...YCNQPKH2VTDW17SD3Q3V

It is likely too small for a pond as big as yours but if you got several, it might help.Unsure


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Thanks.
The pond has thousands of gallons and I might need quite a few except finding them under 3' of snow might be a challenge so sunlight can reach them.Wink
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
The only other option would be to build a small solar array to power a bigger heater that would work on the entire pond but those were around 2k and up plus the cost of the solar panels. The thing about those smaller ones is that going out and brushing off the snow of each one would be easier than snow blowing the entire pond. I'm sure you would rather have a solution that did not require you to go out there at all, and that makes sense but you are limited in your options it appears. I installed a smaller solar array at my house this year and it was a fun project because I did it all myself. I found a web site where I was able to buy the solar panels and the inverter much cheaper than a commercial dealer would charge and they work just as good. My system is a grid tied system that produces 3500 watts but I doubt it would cost that much for a smaller array for your needs.


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
Going down the hill, blowing snow off 3/4 and getting the blower up the hill should take maybe 45 minutes. I need the exercise anyway, plus I may ice fish if I get too bored.
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Re: [SenkoSam] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
LOL, that sounds like a plan, just hope you can get down to the ice and back up with the banks being so steep or did the water level come back up this year


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Re: [wiperhunter2] Finesse lures aren't just for panfish In reply to
We've had a tremendous amount of rain way over average.
Feast or famine for NY and many states. Pond is at max and any more rain will raise it a bit. Shore-to-ice pack will be flat and allow me to drive the blower on and off of it.

Supposed to get up to 4" in the next 36 hours of rain, sleet and a snow mix. Fall can really suck oranges, though in a few entries in my log book years ago I documented still catching fish in early Dec. from my bass boat. That year ice never formed thick enough to ice fish and the following spring came early. Those were the days.....
(This post was edited by SenkoSam on Nov 15, 2018, 1:34 AM)