Select Page

Ultra-light – Ultra Bite

Nothing compares to the feeling of a BIG fish on the end of your line. What if you make them all feel big? While you may find yourself overmatched at times the ultra-light rod set up offers the sensation of big fish fight on that ultra-light tackle. Not necessarily recommended for battling giant fish the thrill of tangling with a trophy comes with many of the hits you get on downsized tackle.

How to use Light weight Fishing Lures
When fishing is tough due to extreme weather or water conditions lightweight lures and slower retrieve are often the answer to getting bit. I’m a fan of lots of rod and reel options when kayak fishing. Constant companions in the kayak are the medium heavy rod and baitcasting reel for pitching jigs and soft plastic worms, craws and creature baits. Also always staged at my feet is a medium action Baitcaster for casting crankbaits, spinnerbaits and top water “plugs.” Equally as important to go along for the ride is a medium action spinning rod with an open face spinning reel to match up with small swim baits, short worms, finesse jigs and baits in the ¼ ounce weight range. Rarely left at home is at least one ultra-light outfit. Ideal for kayak angling and the waters I frequently find myself on the ultra-light can be a life saver when the bite is tough.

example lures
The Ultra-Light System –

For freshwater fishing a typical system that would fall into the category of “ultra-light” might be described like this, a graphite rod, anywhere from five to 6 ½ feet long. The action of the rod, in this case ultra-light, is imprinted at the base of the rod just above the reel seat. It also might include the length of the rod and the recommended line size and lure weights most effective presented on the rod. My personal collection includes rods five foot in length with limber action of a willow branch. Mine run up to a seven-foot model which allows for longer casts, a bit better hook set and effective playing of the fish. (there’s also a few more in-between) Coupled with each of the rods is an undersized open face spinning reel. I like the Lew’s line of rods and reels but there are other manufacturers that offer quality gear. In your search for a reel the ultra-light family of reels is generally numbered as #100 or #1 to indicate smaller AND lightweight models. Don’t sacrifice quality for price in choosing a reel. You want a reel that stands up to any size fish and comes with a smooth retrieve and a great drag system to help you land large fish. When spooling up with line I have migrated to the use of braided line for my spinning reels thereby effectively eliminating the line twist that historically comes with monofilament line. K9fishing offers crappie braided and braided line in a variety of strength aka pound test. I go as low as five-pound test and up to ten on my reels. I have become fond of utilizing a fluorocarbon leader for its strength and added invisible quality (also K9fishing). My leader is normally six to eight-pound test fluoro and is a half foot shorter than the rod. My leader is connected to the braided line with a blood knot. (YouTube) Also when spooling my spinning reels with braid I start with a base of monofilament for the braid to “nest on.”

more example lures
Light Weight Lures –

Back to the smaller lures concept, little lures appeal to fish of varying sizes and when used with a slow retrieve will invariably fool a few fish. These tackle choices are not for the serious trophy hunter but will provide hours of fishing fun and possibly the makings of a fish fry if you are so inclined. This isn’t to say you’ll never get a big fish bite, but it will demand fish playing skills to land your catch. I enjoy the challenge and on the plus side is everything regardless of size feels big! Lightweight ludes included but are not limited to, soft plastic in the forms of craws, tubes, grubs and finesse worms. Many of these undersized offerings are attached to leadheads ranging from tiny 1/16th ounce (there’s lighter) to ¼ ounce versions. The deciding criteria in leadhead weights for me is water clarity, average depth I’ll be fishing and the velocity of the wind. Most of these lures require constant contact so my “go to” is 1/8 ounce. Cast and retrieved with a slow steady return, coupled with the occasional twitch normally generates plenty of hits. Other possibilities are diminutive crankbaits, mini-spinners and tiny spoons. Each is capable of luring bluegill, crappie, bass, trout and almost any species of panfish. Recently while catching bass on a Ragetail baby craw was surprised by a powerful hit and a steady, strong pull that proved (15 minutes later) to be a 25-pound channel catfish. A good drag set, a well tied knot and strong line helped me boat this unexpected giant.

How to use Light weight Fishing Lures
The sensation of the hit and fight for freedom on ultra-light makes it a challenge and fun. Give it a try, go ultra-light and a BIG bite.