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Tiger Muskie Fishing In Western Washington

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Hey everyone, I am going up to Washougal Washington in the beginning of June. I am mostly a bass fishermen, but I have always wanted to catch a Tiger Muskie. I have heard that it is a really hard fish to catch, but I am up for the challenge. Their are not to many lakes around Washougal that have tiger Muskie in them. I have narrowed two lakes that I could possibly fish for Muskie at. Mayfield Lake, and Lake Merwin. I will be fishing on shore. Could anybody please help me on some Muskie tips, and maybe some tips on some spots. It is a dream fish for me, and even catching a small muskie will be considered a success for me. 

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Tiger muskies are a hybrid of musky and pike. They tend to grow faster but not as large as musky. Also they are easier to catch than pure bred musky. My suggestion is use larger lures that are made for pike and musky. Large spoons and inline spinnerbaits, big swim baits and glide baits work and most times will rule out by-catch like bass. In colder water  fish closer to shore. During the heat of summer try the magic hours around sunrise and sunset. Good luck.

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A big bobber and the biggest sucker minnow you can find. Main line to a steel leader to a #5 straight shank hook connect a 4" steel leader to a #5 or 6 trebble hook. Hook the strait shank through the nose on the bait and stick one barb of the trebble into the upper back of the bait behind the dorsal fin.

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On 4/7/2018 at 10:38 PM, FishOnLMB said:

Hey everyone, I am going up to Washougal Washington in the beginning of June. I am mostly a bass fishermen, but I have always wanted to catch a Tiger Muskie. I have heard that it is a really hard fish to catch, but I am up for the challenge. Their are not to many lakes around Washougal that have tiger Muskie in them. I have narrowed two lakes that I could possibly fish for Muskie at. Mayfield Lake, and Lake Merwin. I will be fishing on shore. Could anybody please help me on some Muskie tips, and maybe some tips on some spots. It is a dream fish for me, and even catching a small muskie will be considered a success for me. 

I am from South Florida and caught my first pure bred muskie in the very first day I ever fished for them while on vacation up north. Caught a couple more pure bred muskies after that one and plan on making more trips up north to catch more muskies.I caught it from land in public waters so you don't need a guide if you do your research on muskie fishing. They are indeed a difficult fish to catch but they can be caught like most fish can. I caught my first muskie on a swimbait, just like you use for bass and would suggest you bring some swimbaits when you fish for muskie. Other good lures are gliders, muskie bucktails, spinnerbaits, large jerkbaits,crankbaits, and Zara spooks to name a few lures.

 

You must use a wire leader( at least 16-24") when muskie fishing since they have sharp teeth like a barracuda and you will most likely lose most muskies you hook on typical bass mono. Yes, some people get lucky and land a big muskie on 4 pound test mono with no leader but that is very rare. You could use a mono leader of 150-200 pound test but that is no guarantee since they can still cut mono lines of this size. You can also use live bait such as suckers or anything the state allows you to use. A quick strike rig can increase the percentage of hooked muskie so you can use this rig if you want.Make sure to have a rod with plenty of backbone and a reel with a good, smooth drag since a decent sized muskie fights much harder than any largemouth or smallmouth bass can. I hope you catch a muskie since it will be a experience you will never forget and might get you addicted to muskie fishing, which is a good thing.

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If you have swimbait tackle use 200 size bone S-Waver.

Easy lure to use, cast and slow retrieve, the lure does it's action.

Fan cast and keep moving, fish all around any points. Don't think you will need a wire leader as the lure is slow moving and the musky shouldn't miss it, caught a lot of muskies without a wire leader on big lures.

Tom

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I fish Washington tiger muskie alot as 2 of our 7 tiger muskie lakes are 15 min from my house. They are not as hard to catch as rumored. Don't use steel leader, you'll get less bites using steel than youll lose fish on braid or flouro. The tigers here in Wa love big natural color jerk baits, spinner baits, and red/white or red/silver spoons. I've also caught them with crankbaits and while burning a jig across the top of the water(just in a hurry to get my bait back to the boat, accidental hook up, haha) they love hunting shallow grass and weeds. They will also post up under docks and near rocks. They do seem to like the grasses more than the rocks though. Good luck!!

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Maby the musky  in Washington aren't like the ones in Minnesota, but if I was going on a trip to catch a musky and i wanted to have the best shot from the bank id use live bait and a leader. You can land them without but why risk it. That fish gets a tooth on that line and it's over. You get bit by the right fish you wanna land it.

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I'm with Sully, I can't speak for a Washington tiger muskie, but I caught 7 tiger muskies here in Minnesota last season.  I caught all of them in the early fall when the water temp was between 55-70 degrees and there was also another item that played a role: cloudy/rainy weather.  Every single time I got into fish, it was either cloudy and/or raining.  If I was stuck on shore, I'd try a live bait rig with a sucker and quick strike set.  Look for an area with a nice drop off to deeper water nearby.  If I was in a boat, I'd use artificial lures and cover more water.  You don't need huge normal size muskie lures either - just try some big bass lures.  Tiger muskies will hit smaller lures.  I'd use a leader.  You can get a clear one that helps limit their ability to see the metal wire if you think a leader negatively affects your potential success.

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I think I caught 20+ tigers last year from ice out til November, not one on steel leader and only one bit me off. Along with another hand full of Pike. All I know for sure is guys around here who use steel leader get half as many bites if not less. The clear leader would be a good choice if you're really worried about it.

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9 minutes ago, NorthwestBasser said:

I think I caught 20+ tigers last year from ice out til November, not one on steel leader and only one bit me off. Along with another hand full of Pike. All I know for sure is guys around here who use steel leader get half as many bites if not less. The clear leader would be a good choice if you're really worried about it.

Any tiger muskies over 40"? The muskies that I have caught over 40" had some nasty teeth on them, I am sure they can easily cut 50 pound mono if those teeth where to clamp on the line.In the ocean I have caught barracuda( a fish that has a similar body to a muskie) over 50" without a leader, but that was because I hooked that barracuda in a spot where the teeth could not get the line, which is not often. Most of of the time I catch barracuda on wire leader and even then the wire leader gets messed up from the sharp teeth.

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3 over 40" none over 50" which happens to be the minimum to keep. Probably a dozen in the 30 to 36" range. Oh they have some teeth alright. All my tigers have been caught on 12lb flouro or straight braid. I'm telling you guys, no one around here uses steel leader. Not the tiger or Pike guys. I'd love to get into some barracuda fishing. My brother in law caught one down in Mexico, guess it was kind of a dink though

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3 minutes ago, NorthwestBasser said:

3 over 40" none over 50" which happens to be the minimum to keep. Probably a dozen in the 30 to 36" range. Oh they have some teeth alright. All my tigers have been caught on 12lb flouro or straight braid. I'm telling you guys, no one around here uses steel leader. Not the tiger or Pike guys. I'd love to get into some barracuda fishing. My brother in law caught one down in Mexico, guess it was kind of a dink though

If you like tiger muskie you will love barracuda fishing. Barracudas are pound for pound much stronger than a muskie or pike, with much more endurance as well. They also leap out of the water and don't give up, even when you got it right by the boat. Average size barracuda in South Florida is 10-25 pounds, with some over 50 pounds.Good lures for barracuda are barracuda tubes, and saltwater versions of topwaters, diving plugs,etc.

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