The best crankbaits for trout can be the most effective lures you ever use. Crankbaits are a great but often overlooked type of lure for catching trout of all kinds. People who fly fish know that streamers are great for catching larger piscivorous trout. The same principle applies to spin fishing. Crankbaits are a lot like streamers, but in many ways the lures can actually be superior.
Crankbaits mimic larger food like minnows and crayfish that big trout home in on. Crankbaits also have action and put off vibration which makes them effective in high and discolored water. Trout can even find them at night. Crankbaits come in a variety of styles to work the water column from top to bottom. Finally, you can cover a lot of water with crankbaits that would take much longer to work with other baits or lures.
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The Original Rapala crankbait is probably the best overall crankbait in the world. But the Floating Rapala in sizes 3, 5, and 7 are especially good on trout in moving water. Cast up and across the stream, then close the bail and start to work the lure back against the current. If there are any trout around, there’s a very good chance you will catch some.
You can also hold the Floating Rapala in current, jerk it, or work it in many other ways. Depending on the situation, all sorts of retrieves can catch trout.
The floating lure will dive deep enough to cover most streams. But if you fish very deep waters, you can also try the Countdown Rapala in the same sizes as it has a similar action.
Trout Magnet Crank
The Trout Magnet Crank is like a skinnier tighter version of the Rapala. It might not have the fame or wide application of a Rapala crankbait. But when used in the right situation, the Trout Magnet Crank can catch a lot of trout. The lure works well with a very slow retrieve in still water. This allows the Crank to do a wide and enticing wobble that trout are really drawn too.
The Trout Magnet Crank has proven especially effective at catching trout in lakes. The lure is not very heavy, but you can really get it out there with a long pole and light line. The Southern Belle color is a realistic match for many baitfish. The Brown Trout color works well as a general attractor.
Rebel Crick Hopper
The Rebel Crick Hopper is another small crankbait with a slow and wide wobble. Many people use them for panfish and bass in ponds. But these little lures are killer for trout too. You can fish them on a slow retrieve in pond or lake. Or you can work them in flowing water.
Crick Hoppers work especially well when fished over drop offs and when retrieved over long distances. The back and forth of the lure seems to bring trout in and get them to follow. Eventually the action is too much for them to resist. It’s unlikely the fish think these are actually crickets as they swim through the water. But that doesn’t matter. Trout love these lures.
Megabass Vision 110
Slow rolling lures like the Trout Magnet Crank and Crick Hopper are great for slack water. Jerkbaits are the perfect fit for swift water. Though most people think of these lures as bass or maybe walleye catchers, they work well on big trout in fast flows too.
Despite the name, the Megabass Vision 110 is a great jerkbait for big trout. At just over four inches, it works all over wherever big fish swim. You can either select a color like Sexy Shad that matches the local forage fish. Or, if that doesn’t work, go with an attractor pattern in a totally different color. Fish near natural ambush points where big fish lie in wait.
Rebel Teeny Wee Crawfish
Another great crankbait from Rebel that works as well on trout as it does on other species is the Teeny Wee Crawfish. These lures can catch fish when it seems like nothing else will work at all. The secret is in the tight and fast action which kicks off a lot of vibration. You can fish these in high and fast water too. Because the action doesn’t fail even in a very swift current.
In clear water you can fish the Teeny Wee Crawfish with a slower retrieve. It gets down to the bottom and bangs around on the rocks without hanging up. The action, design and colors all make the lure look like a real crayfish in retreat. Trout in streams like to eat crayfish. And big trout especially like to eat them whenever they get the chance.