Updated on January 11, 2019
HuntnFish has spent many years on the water fishing and has caught nearly every species of fish in Washington State.
An adult Rainbow Trout. | Source
I remember when I got my first fishing pole. I remember my first tackle box, landing net, and of course my first fish. From there it only grew. Eventually I filled that first tackle box, and then another, and another. Then I started carrying tackle trays in a backpack but even that ran out of space. Even I’ll admit I rarely use half that stuff in any of my backpacks, but I like feeling prepared.
The more I thought about it though, I realized that there was only a small handful of trout lures I ever used. So here they are, my 5 best trout catching lures. Also be sure to check out my Top 5 Best Trout Baits.
Worden’s Flatfish: Frog Pattern
This is one of the first lures I ever fished with. It was always a favorite of my dad and way back when, when he was rigging the line, this was what he usually choose. They have caught me numerous trout as well as bass, crappie, walleye and other game fish. The reason I have this listed in fifth place is that they can be tricky to use. They are typically to light weight to cast without adding weight to your presentation, and have a tendency to “roll” rather than wobble when weighted. I’ve had the best luck using a series of snapshot strung at least 18″ above the lure. When these lures really excel is when trolling. They can be rigged deep with weights or by using lead core line, but often my best luck has been slow trolling them along the surface, just fast enough to get them “kicking” on the surface. You can’t beat top-water strikes.
As for my favorite colors and sizes, I’d have to go with Frog pattern in the 1 1/2 inch size. Option two would be the same size in solid Gold.
An impressive haul of brown trout, as well as a lunker Arctic Grayling! | Source
Mepps Aglia Spinner
Mepp’s Aglia lures may be the top producing trout spinners in the world. The blades rotate even at very slow retrieval rates, and their compact design allow for far-reaching casts for the shore-bound angler. When trolling, I find that they tend to ride up in the water column and need to be weighted to be fished effectively (contrary to the flatfish, spinners are very ineffective surface lures- the blade just wont spin).
As for colors, my favorite is the original model with the bare gold spoon. Option two would be the same with a bare silver spoon. As for size, I would first reach for the 1/8 oz. Under most circumstances this is the best middle ground for size and weight. In deeper or faster water, 1/4oz might be a better bet. In gin clear water or small streams, I might size down to a 1/16oz.
A chunky rainbow trout caught by a reader. Way to go Mike! | Source
The Wooly Bugger here is a “Bead Head” version. The gold bead adds weight and some extra flash.
So I agree that this is kind of the odd man (or bug) out in this list, but it’s a must have. Fishing one on spinning gear takes a little more rigging than with a fly rod, but it can be done, and if done correctly will prove very effective. The most common way is to attach a clear casting bobber above the fly. This serves a dual purpose, it is your weight and strike indicator. In most cases, I will attach the bobber about 3 feet from the fly. The further the bobber is from the fly the more natural the presentation will appear. This set up can either be still fished or casted and retrieved. Keep in mind that a fly has no inherit action of its own, so it will help to vary your retrieve speed and give the fly an occasional twitch to make it come alive. When the bobber takes a dip, well you know that drill.
As for color I would say olive is my favorite followed closely by black and brown. If these colors seen too bland for your taste, chances are you can find a Wooly Bugger in everything from chartreuse to puce (Although I can’t say much for how well these colors catch fish). And size, I’d say #6 and #8 mostly.
When targeting brown trout, like the one pictured here, consider going one size larger with your lure, and selecting natural colors. | Source
2. Rapala Original Floater
Rapala Original Floater: Rainbow Trout Pattern
It almost pains me to give Rapala Original Floater second place. If this list took all fish species into account, it would probably take the number 1 slot, but for trout, he’ll take second. These lures can be fished in more ways than I can count. They are rather light, but cast easily enough on a light weight trout set-up. When retrieving this lure, I reel at a constant speed, and occasionally twitch the rod tip towards the lure, creating slack in the line. This will cause the Rapala to pause and hang momentarily in the water. Often, this pause is exactly what a trailing predator trout is looking for to trigger a bite. Additionally, these lures prove very effective on the end of any trolling setup.
Favorite model: F7. (The F stands for “Floating”, the 7 is the size)
Favorite color: Rainbow trout. Option two would be the gold, (black back, gold belly)
When your target fish are eating bait fish as part of their natural prey, like the brown trout seen here, Rapala lures are an excellent choice. | Source
Panter Martin Spinner: this is the yellow spotted model. It seems to be taking the green spots place in production. It has proved equally effective though. I guess I could always paint my own green spots on.
To be more precise, the Panther Martin spinner (they are known for they’re spinner but make a variety of other lures now). I love this lure! In fact, I have a pretty spendy spinning setup that I have devoted just to this lure; it never comes off (except to change it to another size maybe). I would say 80% of the time when targeting trout somewhere new, I will try this lure first. In my book, this is the best all around trout lure ever made.
What I like about it:
- The “through the blade” spinner design is by far the most reliable in my experience.
- The large blades move a lot of water, you can feel the “thump, thump, thump” of the rotating blade right up though your rod. This way, you know that the lure is really working.
- The compact design allows for tremendous casting radius and allows the lure to work deep in streams.
- Can be trolled without any additional weight.
- They catch all kinds of fish
- They have worked practically everywhere I have fished them.
- They are pretty cheap.
Favorite color: Black body with green spots (yellow spots work alright too) with a gold blade. Option two would be yellow body with red dots with a silver blade.
Favorite size: Again 1/8 ozis my favorite.
Panther Martin Best of the Best Kit
Panther Martin Best of the Best Kit.
If I had to bet a single day’s trout fishing anywhere in the country on one lure, it would be a Panther Martin spinner. The Panther Martin Best of the Best Kit provides lure color combinations to effectively fish any light and water condition.
I Want to Hear from You!
I would love to hear your feedback. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments section below, I’d be glad to help! If you found this article helpful, do me a huge favor and Share using the Facebook or Pinterest links at the top of the page. Best yet, if this helped you catch some fish recently, send me a picture using the ‘Contact the Author’ link at the top of the page and I’ll feature you and your catch on an upcoming post! Thank you!
Justin, a reader I’ve stayed in contact with over the years, had an enormously successful day trout fishing up on the Manistee river. Just look at that piggy brown and rainbow trout! | Source