Maintaining an open mind, and experimenting are tenants of the BBZ mindset, yet you are always going to find an Eppinger Huskie Delve Spoon, a Lindy Tiger Tube, and a Yakima T-60 Flatfish in our tackle during a Plummer’s Lodges Lake Trout Adventure.
These picks allow anglers to cover the entire water column, and fool big Lake Trout.
The Eppinger Huskie Devle
The Huskie Delve 300 series is a large metal spoon. Almost as wide as its length, 5.5” this 3.25 ounce spoon produces a thump, flutter, and vortex that Lake Trout love. The signature of this lure moving through the water column calls big fish.
The big Devle is equally effective casting or trolling. With the same rod and reel set-up, you can troll a stretch of shoreline and immediately turn around and target a cast to an isolated high spot on a submerged reef. Trolling or casting don’t get stuck in the same groove. Change your course, change your speed, understand what your lure is doing during an inside turn, versus an outside turn, when to speed up, when to slow down.
Miss a strike, that fish is probably still there and tracking. Don’t give up after a missed strike. Stay sharp; you can coax Lake Trout into coming back for another good strike. Mix your cadence, free fall/flutter back, sell yourself. Lake Trout often react when your lure produces a change in movement. Live bait doesn’t swim a straight line at the same pace, nor should your lure. https://dardevle.com/product/huskie-devle-3-1-4oz/
The Lindy Tiger Tube
The Tiger Tube we use is eight inches in length. It features an internal jig head system that accommodates a treble stinger hook. The Lindy Tiger Tube, shown, is no longer in production. My Great Bear fishing partner, BBZ’s Bill Siemantel, teamed up with Spence Petros, and Lindy to design the Tiger Tube. I’m lucky that Bill still has some. Otherwise, Basstrix, Canyon Lures, and others companies provide magnum tubes and hardware.
You can troll this lure; it happens to be one of if not the most versatile baits ever. It’s also a highly effective search bait that covers the entire water column. When it’s time to cast this is when the Big Tube shines.
Bill and I have watched fish on the sonar react to the boat. In the same stretch sometimes, we experience short strikes or fish that don’t stay pinned after the initial hook up. You’ve located fish, yet they seem ‘touchy,’ this is an excellent time to target these Lake Trout with an approach they don’t see often.
With a big tube, you can come back, instead of being directly over the fish, you can place the boat out and away from the fish, on a wind drift make long casts. Casting beyond the fish holding spot, allowing the bait to glide on a pendulum swing down into the kill zone. Occasionally apply manual action causing the lure to flare out and upward by popping the bait on tight line, a loaded rod, and quickly reeling line in to prevent any slack that can foul the stinger hook. Like a fly fisherman making graceful casts, each time you properly snap the tube the bait flares up and out, tails flush outward on the pause, the glow of the tube simulates the flash of a baitfish school, directional change, course change, a lot of outstanding attributes are packed into the Tiger.
If Illusion is the game, throughout the entire water column big tubes in the hands of a capable angler can produce magic. All lures are an illusion; big tubes are an advanced deception. Big fish across the planet can’t resist big tubes, Great Bear’s trophy Lake Trout are no different.
The Yakima T-60 Flatfish
This lure is a big crankbait, a Wiggle Wort on steroids that catches Lake Trout on steroids. Its design produces an extreme wobble, a bill and body shape crafted to dive, dig, and deflect when it strikes an object. If crankbaits twerk, the T-60 is Lake Trout bootylicious.
The Yakima T-60 is the bookend of the Eppinger Husky Delve. This crankbait dives and when boat position and rigging allows it digs into the lake bottom, deflecting off cover elements. Varying boat speed, reeling during a troll or moving the rod tip position you can affect how the T-60 moves through the water column.
If you miss a strike or get slapped, free-spool and the T-60 will wobble up; this course change can be the trigger. http://www.yakimabait.com/products/flatfish/
All three lures are set-up with 65-pound Maxima braided line; a double Albright knot connects the main line to a 40-pound Maxima Ultragreen Monofilament leader. The mono leader is important for protecting Lake Trout. Lake Trout are notorious for rolling and wrapping the line around their head and gill plate when hooked. If you use braided line only, it will cut into the flesh and gills most likely producing a fatal injury. Great Bear’s Lake Trout is a precious resource, and unless you plan on eating one for a shore lunch, catch and release is strictly practiced. http://www.maximafishingline.com/
At the end of the leader, a size-5 165-pound SPRO ball bearing swivel with a Coastlock Snap is tied on using a San Diego Jam knot. The snap accommodates quick lure changes, and the swivel prevents line twist. http://www.spro.com/
Both the Huskie Devle and the Tiger Tube are paired with a Daiwa 8-foot DXSB 801 Extra Heavy Swimbait Rod and a Lexa 400HS 8:1 reel. We use an 8-foot DXSB 801 Heavy Swimbait Rod to accommodate the crankbait action of the T-60, and a Lexa 400 7:1 gear ratio. The lower ratio makes it easier on your wrists and arms when the Flatfish is dredging into the lake bottom. http://www.daiwa.com/us/
The Daiwa DX Swimbait Rod at $110.00 is an excellent deal. We use them for multiple applications in both freshwater and the ocean. They’re available at Tackle Warehouse, with free shipping on orders over $50.00 https://www.tacklewarehouse.com/Daiwa_DX_Swimbait_Casting_Rods/descpage-DXB.html
There is a common theme with all three of these lures. They’re versatile, they’re large, and it’s easy to give them life. Stick with these three proven Lake Trout winners and maximize your hook-up rate.
For more information on a trip of a lifetime with Plummer’s Lodges on amazing Great Bear Lake, NWT Canada visit https://www.plummerslodges.com/