There are many different opinions about the best bait for trout fishing. At the end of the day many trout bait choices are good, but as the United States Marines say, “many can be good, but only one can be the best.” So, is there a best bait for trout fishing? Over the past two decades I’ve spent a majority of my fishing time fishing in rivers and streams throughout the United States for trout, and it that time have realized what the best bait for trout is in these types of situations.
The issue is that rivers and streams aren’t the only place to catch trout. In this article I will list some of the most popular trout fishing baits along with the types of trout fishing situations where these trout baits are the most effective. The bottom line is that the best bait for trout will vary from situation to situation and the more that you understand about what trout baits work where, the more successful you will be as a trout fisherman.
The following baits are being listed in no particular order. As I said, they all seem to have there time and place depending on the fishing situation.
Live Baits – Live baits are excellent fishing bait, especially when fished in the flowing water of either a small river or stream. Some of the most popular live baits for trout fishing would include: worms, minnows, large insects, and even crayfish (great live bait for large trout). Live worms are my personal favorite live trout bait, especially in river fishing situations where wading is necessary.
Artificial Flies – Although not a fly fisherman myself, artificial flies are certainly a something that many trout fishermen consider the best bait for trout. Artificial flies are fished in both lake and river trout fishing situations are most effective when used in conjunction with some form of insect “hatch”. Artificial flies are normally employed while using fly fishing gear, which is specialized gear designed specifically for fishing artificial flies. Artificial flies can also be used as trout fishing bait while using traditional spinning gear by employing something called a casting bubble.
Synthetic Trout Baits – For many trout fishermen, these trout baits are among the best baits for trout. These baits are man made and normally distributed and sold in small jars. Powerbait is a popular and effective brand name of this type of trout fishing bait. These trout baits are most effective when fishing in lake situations, especially when fishing for stocked or planted trout. This type of bait is normally fished with some sort of bank fishing rig (my personal favorite rig for trout fishing with synthetic bait is a gang hook rig). The point is that synthetic trout baits are certainly among the best baits for our multi-colored friends.
Small Spinners/Spoons – For the trout fisherman who uses traditional spinning gear, small spinners and spoons are an effective trout bait. Small spinners and spoons imitate small baitfish and make very effective bait for trout. Some small spinners have hair or fur attached to them for added trout attracting power. These baits can be effectively fished in both lake and river fishing situations.
If anyone ever asks you what is the best trout fishing bait is you can tell them that the final answer will vary, but these four varieties of trout bait are certainly a great place to start.