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So after loosing some lures, what leader can I run on top water that will prevent the few pike I catch each basing session from sawing me off without ruining the action of the lure?

 

living in Michigan where there are bass almost always pike are near. Any big bait you throw you run the risk of one of those tooth critters. 

 

I almost always use a leader with lures that are sub surface. I really only run strait braid to top water and worms, ligs so any insight would be great for my top water issues. They leave the worms alone, but on most of my set ups besides my plastics pole I have to run 15 pound braid because I hit so many pike. 

I already have 10, 15, 25 pound leader material all fluero, could I get away with the 15 pound or would a pike just kill that? I know the 25 pound is excellent for pike, but it seems awfully thick and is very hard to tie up, usually my rods only see leaders like that when I’m out throwing big buck tails or massive whopper ploppers targeting pike.

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I'd tie a 3' 17lb nylon leader to your braid with an Alberto knot.  Leave a 3/4" tag on the braid end.

 

oe

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I fish in Michigan a lot. After getting too many pike bite offs while bass fishing I started tying 7” 30lb Seaguar blue label leaders. I caught so many pike up to 35” with these without any bite offs. I tie a 4 turn clinch knot with the heavy fluorocarbon and it’s solid as a rock. I use it with spooks, and whopper ploppers,   And they work great.

One thing to keep in mind. As soon as you get a nick in the leader you have to replace it. I make sure to have 2 or 3 pre tied each trip.

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I target pike often and have had good experiences running an 18" 80lb Seaguar Abrazx leader.  I fish a lot of Spooks and size 14 Husky Jerks with that leader without issue.  I've run 30lb and 50lb Seaguar blue label in the past but have had bite offs.  I tie my own, 130lb ball bearing swivel at one end with a heavy duty snap at the other end.  I do a 3 wrap cinch knot, cinch it down by pulling from both ends with vise grips, then a dab of super glue on both knots.  Heavy fluorocarbon is difficult to work with, but it can be done.  I tend to run my leaders on the heavier side since big musky prowl the same waters I fish pike.

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I use this ~ 

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And this is why

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Works Well.

A-Jay

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   I hate to tell you this, but my solution is to run only only one true topwater; a buzzbait. For those, I can use a cheap metal leader (usually Eagle Claw).  Everything else I run is subsurface. I learned my lesson long ago.  😕🤩🤩🤩  jj

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Thank you guys! I wasn’t sure how bad a leader that thick would mess up a top water. I already use leaders on my piking setup so it sounds like I don’t need to buy anything. I was worried because it looks like weed whacker line that it would ruin lure action. 

I feel like If your born in a norther pike state you can’t help but catch them. Absolute savage feeders. 

 

Im assuming with small poppers I need to just hope it’s a bass haha 

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For hammer handles 15-20 lb mono will do. For big ones I'd go 30 -50. I fish frogs with 40lb mono leader, and  hardly ever loose them to pike or snakeheads (and bass don't care). Straight braid will part if it comes into contact with pike teeth when under tension.

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I make my own single strand steel leaders and have used them for years. I’ve never found that the action has been ruined even on walk the dog topwaters as long as you keep the rod tip up. 

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Wayzata Bait sells 2.5” steel crankbait leaders that prevent 90% of pike bite-offs and yet aren’t heavy enough to submarine most topwater lures.  952-473-2227. 

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Just now, FryDog62 said:

Wayzata Bait

They're in a strip mall, north frontage road of 394/12 between 494 and Cty 101 in Wayzata...just a bit east of Village Chevrolet.

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I hate those slime bag pike

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2 minutes ago, gimruis said:

I hate those slime bag pike

They're almost as tasty as walleye ;)

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Thank you guys a ton, I ended up going with A-Jays reccomendation, because I actually own that leader already, I just didn't wanna rig up my top water pole with a leader and waste any before knowing it was ok lol! Leader material is a 30 minute round trip for me to pick up locally, so I tend to be very cautious on how much I use.

 

I wont lie I love hooking into a pike, just for the simple fact they are such savage fish I just want my gear back when I have my bass poles. I actually have to run leaders on everything where I fish, unless its a pond. Really anything thats a decent body of water in michigan WILL have pike or even bigger trouble musky lol!!!! Braid was revolutionary, Idc what people say about break strength I have had multiple 24+ inch pike landed on 10 pound powerpro to a leader with a medium light (6-12) spinning rod matched to a 2500 series reel. Just let off the drag a little if your not near cover, they dont fight for long, but boy do they fight hard when they are first hooked lol. Figure 8's basically trying to thrash the lure out of its mouth.

 

Now when I am strictly pike fishing I run my 4000 penn to a medium heavy spinning with 30 pound power pro to a leader, and I swear its overkill.

 

I mean I have put gloves on and tried to break 30 pound and its not as easy as you would think. The only time I can see going higher in freshwater is if the species calls for it, or for your frogging pole where you might pull up 20 pounds of weeds with the fish or something lol.

7 hours ago, gimruis said:

I hate those slime bag pike

I only hate them when they steal my gear haha! They are slimy, although to keep michigan a world class fishery I usually unhook my pike partially netted(rubber net) still in the water unless hes over 30 inches or so than I might photograph first

 

7 hours ago, redmeansdistortion said:

They're almost as tasty as walleye ;)

Have you actually tried eating one or are you just trying to make me kill a pike haha!!!!! Because walleye is arguably one of the most delicious freshwater fish species, and I have seen people fillet pike, granted it seems like you loose a ton of fish from those d**n Y-bones, but if they are good eating my buddies private pond is actually overran with them so badly we might have to "harvest" some, before they ruin the pond.

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3 hours ago, AlTheFisherman313 said:

Have you actually tried eating one or are you just trying to make me kill a pike haha!!!!! Because walleye is arguably one of the most delicious freshwater fish species, and I have seen people fillet pike, granted it seems like you loose a ton of fish from those d**n Y-bones, but if they are good eating my buddies private pond is actually overran with them so badly we might have to "harvest" some, before they ruin the pond.

They are very delicious.  Perfect eater size is keeper-size to 30 inches.  I shy away from the bigger ones because they probably have more mercury and other things in them having been around longer. There are ways you can fillet them and not get any bones.  Check YouTube, all kinds of very good videos.

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Never had any issues using 25# Dacron braid direct to surface lures, it floats. Small diameter Super braids like Power Pro have the issue with toothy fish like pike or musky. Micro wire leader will sink but is bullet proof for toothy fish.

Tom

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On 6/3/2019 at 2:59 AM, AlTheFisherman313 said:

Now when I am strictly pike fishing I run my 4000 penn to a medium heavy spinning with 30 pound power pro to a leader, and I swear its overkill

Geez, and I thought my 8' xh with 80 lb braid and an 80 lb Fluoro leader was too light sometimes...

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On 6/5/2019 at 5:41 PM, anderb54 said:

Geez, and I thought my 8' xh with 80 lb braid and an 80 lb Fluoro leader was too light sometimes...

Haha when I go up north I bring the "hammer", but as far as general casting I have landed just as many on my "light Piker" as I do with my "hammer" and yes I name my fishing poles. They have feelings also haha.

 

I have found with the average pike your catching say sub 30incher you do not need big tackle, up north when the pike hit musky size is when I bring the musky pole, although I have landed a musky on 30 pound braid to an 80 pound musky leader. They fight, but its usually not long in comparison to an ocean fish. I do tend to use only my big boy when going for musky so I can haul them in and release them as quickly as possible. For such aggressive predators they are shockingly gentle to handle.

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Also 80 pounds is heavy you could run 40-60 and be fine. 

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