Wait, don’t toss out those dead minnows! Here’s how to give floaters a second life to still catch fish
#1 FLICKING LINE
If you haven’t tried it, it’s hard to believe how little action you need to impart on a dead minnow to elicit a strike. With just a few flicks of your finger against the taut line between your reel and the first eye of the rod, you can make those boring floaters jump to life in a vertical presentation. Short, fast tugs on the line with your trigger finger produce the same effect. A minnow hooked through the lip on a standard jig, for example, allows the minnow to move freely and respond to even the lightest flick of the line. I’ve used this technique to great effect jigging for walleye, sauger, perch, panfish and all species of stocked trout. It’s even worked for deepwater summer lakers when the trusty old white tube jig wasn’t producing over marked fish. Similarly, the flick trick works gangbusters with a dead floater hooked through the lip when drop-shotting for smallmouth bass and other species. Pick a flick pattern, repeat it, then change it up from time to time, just as you would when normally jigging.