Sunday, December 6, 2009

Winter Finesse Game

For those who want to chase stripers all winter long in the Providence River, realize this is a finesse game. The fish are not as active as they are in the warmer months and the most successful fishermen employ a light tackle approach with slow moving plastic artificials mounted on lightweight jigheads.

My choice of outfit is a 7 foot St. Croix Triumph rod matched up with an Okuma Stratus reel. I like 10 lb. test Big Game mono. Mono tends to function better than braid in very cold weather. You also need to go light on the mono as higher pound tests will kink up in the cold.

For lures, there is nothing better than a Zoom fluke (4 or 5 inch sizes) or any other fork tailed plastic body. You want to get these in light colors with such colors as albino, Arkansas shiner, and smokin shad all good producers. Match these flukes up with a small jighead of about half an ounce. I actually carry a number of jighead styles from a quarter to three quarters of an ounce.

The retrieve is slow with an occasional bounce of the rod tip. Try to scratch the bottom as much as possible. Move around a lot since the fish tend to bunch up in wintertime.