Hook points are VERY important. Many hooks are dull straight out of the package. We think they are sharp because they have no problem piercing our soft skin. However many parts of a fishes mouth are thin skin over tough bone. The more successful anglers make it a habit to sharpen their hooks when they are tied on and then again after each fish is caught. Another thing that should be done when you catch a fish is to take off the bait or lure/fly and cut back at least 12 inches of line. When the fish is hooked it often heads for cover and this cover will fray the monofilament line. Feel the line above the lure for bumps and fragments of mono.
In fly fishing the fish isn't bothered by the hook, it sees the movement of the fly and the flies' materials. When fishing with live worms we often believe the hook point must be covered or the fish won't bite. If one uses live or dead minnows the hook point is almost always exposed. All lures both plastic and metal have hooks that are exposed and they continue to catch fish. So why is it that we think that a hook point must be covered with worm or it won't catch fish? The biggest reason is that the fish has time to inspect the bait more closely and mouth it before accepting or rejecting it. With all other methods the lure is on the move and the fish has only seconds to decide then hits or rejects it. It's the dumb fish that feels the hard bait or hook and comes back for another chance. Often these "dumb" fish are young and inexperienced much like a teenager falling in love.
Many beginner fly fishermen use what ever they have on hand and carry the bait fishing technics with them. Some are useful while some are not. I was talking with Dwight Packard last year and discussing some proven methods of catching trout in brooks and streams. See how many of these work for you.
So there are ten tips to prove I still use worms on occasion. My problem with bait is that they die in a hot car. I prefer flies and or lures. Early in the season you will find me fishing for bass and crappie at Lake Sebasticook. Durham Bridge and the Old County Road bride are my favorite haunts. My first choice early is a 2 inch sexy shad on a white 1/8 oz. Jig. Ten years ago Sexy Shad could be found everywhere. Now I can find them in only one shop and I have to order them by mail. If you want some, feel free to contact me. Sebasticook give up huge crappies. There are a few places that they bite on a regular basis. If you have a small boat or canoe it's a breeze fishing there. Land fishermen will give you a hint as to where the hot spots are but there is often only room for 2 anglers in the best shore locations because of the brush and trees. Later in the season when the crappies move in to spawn under the bridge, it's much easier to catch a bucket full. Harry Hatch told me that he loved crappies, so that evening I brought a 5 gallon bucket to the bridge and told the anglers that I have a friend that loves them and only save the large ones.We filled the bucket in a half hour. You will have to ask Harry what he thought of the size of the crappies.
Ron McKusick owns a fly shop that sells flies and fly tying materials one mile beyond the Dexter Airport. He built his own Website. You can buy his streamers and trolling tandem flies at many shops from Fairfield to Rockwood and over to Milo. Ron has tied flies since 1974 and sold them since 1976. If you want to buy flies wholesale for your store, fishing lodge, guiding service or camp, contact him at 207-924-3886 or EMAIL
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